Talk about practicing humility in business. Now more than ever, business leaders are looking at how others can help them survive during this global crisis. You may be depending on government stimulus dollars and loans to get you through it. You might be depending on vendors to maintain your inventory. Maybe you’re depending on hard-working essential employees to work longer hours. Whatever your current reality, the fact is that you can’t do this on your own.
Your business depends on employees, customers, vendors, and partners to make it all happen. And this becomes more transparent when times get tough. But how do you translate humility into an effective form of leadership when direction and clarity are needed most? How do you help make employees feel more involved and more responsible for their work? Here are some things to think about to help you sort things out.
Being patient is especially challenging during rough spots. You’re under a lot of stress. More than ever, you are expected to be a super hero to a lot of people. Just as you are depending on others to help you, others are depending on you for answers. Remember to take care of yourself, remain calm, and keep a level head. There is a lot of truth to the old saying, “cooler heads prevail.” Hot heads may get attention, but a calm approach is a more effective influence.
According to Dr. Rob Bell, a Sport Psychology Coach, “Humility is a big brother to patience.” Both humility and patience are mental skills. Practicing both leads to mental toughness, something every leader needs to succeed.
Things will not always go the way you want. The sooner you realize that the better. There will be plenty of diversity including different styles, different methods, and different outcomes. Find ways to make the differences work for you and what you are trying to achieve. You will be amazed at the results!
Accepting your faults and exploring how to improve yourself is important for all of us. But as a leader, it will open up more viable solutions and effectively guide your decisions. For example, you wouldn’t swim across the lake for crucial supplies if you don’t know how to swim. Instead, as a leader you would delegate a more capable person to get the job done.
Ask for feedback
Think of feedback as potential, optional lifelines. You may not accept all feedback as fact, but you should at least give each some consideration. Encourage employees to speak up! Ask for feedback from stakeholders including customers. Make it easy for people to leave their comments and share feelings about your products or services. Doing this may help you find better ways to do business. Take feedback seriously. Repeated negative comments may signal issues that need to be addressed. Plus, you never know when and where that next million-dollar idea will come from.
Consider all sides
Looking at problems and issues from all vantage points provides the best potential solutions. Think of it as a Rubik’s Cube. You need to see all sides to solve the puzzle. Going in blindsided will leave you vulnerable to possible disaster. Here humility is especially key. No one is expected to know everything. It coincides with the thought that no one can be at all places at all times. Be open minded and receptive to what may be the most important concept of your business.
Leading a company can be distracting. There are many things going on as you run your operation. When information comes across to you, pause and listen. It may not apply to what you are doing at the time but may be a warning of things to come. Or, it could represent the idea of a lifetime!
But humility is not easy. Some think of it as a sign of weakness. A sign of defeat and admitting that you don’t know what your doing. But it’s actually the opposite. Being humble takes strength and courage. It’s not a natural reaction or state of mind. It requires that you remain in the present. That you are unassuming. And that you respect others and their opinions. For some, being humble might take some practice, especially if being modest isn’t your forte.
Good for business
Being humble is good for business. It goes hand in hand with honesty, selflessness, serving others and doing the right thing. Humble leaders are willing to admit they don’t have all the answers. They’re not concerned with getting credit for their achievements or the achievements of others. It’s about modesty and being open to what others have to offer.
Your employees and other stakeholders will appreciate and be encouraged by your honesty and openness. Finding a nice balance of strength and conviction while being humble can reap big rewards for your business. Especially during rough patches that require the best possible leader to get through it.
Bitbean is ready to help your business. Contact us today to learn how we can help you find ways to improve your processes.