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Humility - A Powerful Leadership Trait

by Jonathan Jones

While much attention is paid to the charismatic Leader, I contend that humility is a more powerful leadership trait than charisma. The pressure on the charismatic leader to stay “on” reduces the time necessary to step away from the business. Should something happen to a charismatic leader, then what happens to the organization?   

The quality of humility can, if the leader is mindful, center her in a healthy ability to connect with others. A humble leader puts her focus on the organization and the people she leads. Humility comes of respect for the hard work it took to arrive where she is that can translate into respect that others are also working hard to succeed. The humble leader then treats people around her as peers rather than subordinates. She takes the call to lead as a serious responsibility to ensure the success of everyone in the company, rather than just her own. Humility means recognizing the effects of every decision in relationship to the organization, the customers, employees, and the families involved.  

Rather than worry about how you look running an organization, put your passion and energy into building a great organization and let the results speak for you. If problems arise, accept responsibility and engage your team to make adjustments.  Take advantage of people around you who may be smarter than you are. Think about the sustainability of the organization by creating mechanisms to enhance performance of talented people to achieve desired goals. And lastly, recognize those who achieve the results you are looking for; make it about their talents, not your leadership .

While the charismatic leader gets much of the attention, it is usually the humble leader who engages the team and gets the results needed for the long term success of the organization.

Jonathan Jones ( or 314-608-0783) is a CEO peer group chair/coach for Vistage International.
Submitted 7 years 307 days ago
Categories: categoryCulturecentric Leadership
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