Unleashing Leadership: Unlocking Greatness and Embracing Change

Humility

October 04, 2023 Travis Maus Season 2 Episode 33
Unleashing Leadership: Unlocking Greatness and Embracing Change
Humility
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Ever wondered how humility can transform your leadership style? Prepare to decode the often misunderstood concept of humility in our latest episode. We go beyond defining humility, emphasizing its importance in fostering a team environment and dispelling the myth that it equates to being at the bottom of the ladder. Our candid discussion explores how humility is actually about acknowledging one's significance and knowing when to step back, enabling others to take the lead.

Drawing an intriguing analogy, we compare leadership humility to running a fortress - a balance between solid barriers for protection and open gates for communication and collaboration. We provide you with insights into the delicate act of showing your authentic self while leveraging your leadership position only when necessary. As we navigate through this episode, we also tackle practical ways to dismantle ego barriers and silos within your team. Tune in as we embark on this enlightening journey, equipping you with a fresh perspective on humility in leadership.

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Speaker 1:

This is on leaching leadership. I'm your host, travis Moss, and welcome to episode 33. And before we get into what episode 33 is about, I'm going to warn you we are not having deja vu. We are in the book ideal team player, although we did cover the same topic when we did team of teams. So back in episode six or seven we talked about getting yourself some humble, and you had to get yourself some humbleness because you had to be prepared to change the way you think about complicated and complex things. Remember, things you cannot control are complex and you have to admit that. So now we're gonna fast forward to the ideal team player and we're talking about humble again, but we're talking about a little different now. It's one of the three virtues of being an ideal team player. So now we have to be humble.

Speaker 1:

But I think we need to start to define it. We need to talk about what it really means to be humble, and so I googled the definition. What does it mean? When somebody says be humble? Because it's kind of one of those buzzwords that we talked about a couple episodes ago, you put humble on the wall. But what is humble? Right, it's, and I made the argument that it's a virtue, it's an actual thing, it's a, it's a definable thing. So we need to take it back off the wall. We need to make it a concrete. This is what it means to be humble.

Speaker 1:

There is no argument about this, and so the definition is having or showing a modest or low estimate of one's own importance, of low social, administrative or political rank lower in dignity or importance. So this sounds like a very crappy situation. It sounds like the person at the bottom right. There's nothing in there that really talks about being successful in managing your success and not being overbearing to others and that type of thing. So how do you know? What do high performers do? Are they supposed to sit around the table, play their little fiddle and say, oh you know, we got a humble beginning, so anytime there's something wrong, I'll take the blame for it and eat it. Or you know I can't speak up. You know I can't defend my own dignity. That's not what it means to be humble. In fact, I think you could argue the opposite, you know, and we're gonna get into that a little bit. So I I decided I would rewrite this definition to a modern use from a standpoint of. I guess that's not really fair. I'm not rewriting definition. I'm applying it so that you know how to act as though you are humble. Because if being humble is being at the bottom, you're not going to be at the bottom, you're going to be at the top. So how do I still act as though I was at the bottom with the virtues of somebody at the bottom? Basically, it's what it's saying. So I'll read the definition, then we'll do some comparisons to kind of see how I said it.

Speaker 1:

I have an awareness of my own importance, but do not seek to draw attention to it unless absolutely necessary. I act in a way as though I am accountable to everyone around me and I understand that I am not the most important person in the world and I am not overly concerned with my image. A couple of points here. Let's start with it. Instead of having or showing a modest or low estimate of my own self importance, I have an awareness of my own self importance, but I do not seek to draw attention to it unless absolutely necessary. I'm gonna let others around me shine. I don't need people, I don't need to be reverent in the face who I am and how important I am in place of a low social, administrative political rank. So you're at the bottom? Well, you're not at the bottom anymore. I act in a way that's accountable to everyone around me. When you're at the bottom, everybody's your boss. When you're at the top, you have less bosses, right? Treat everybody as though they're your boss. Give them that kind of respect. If you don't think they deserve it, they shouldn't be on your team. So you make the change, but you don't disrespect them while you're on your team in place of lower dignity or importance. I understand that I'm not the most important person in the world and not overly concerned with my image. If you are more concerned with your hair, your outfit, your speech, looking the part, you are missing so much I mean, there, we can't even get into it on this. We'd have to do an entire episode just on that.

Speaker 1:

You need to be more concerned about what's going on with your team around you. What are they dealing with? If you got a bad hair day, who cares? That's called being humble. You can have the bad hair day so the rest of the team looks good. You Surround yourself with people that look really good. You want everybody around you to be looking better than you look and I'm using that figuratively right, looking as it's not just looks, it's, it's action, right, it's Proactivity, if that kind of stuff you want, you want the recognition for the team, not for you. Put yourself back in a little box, put that ego back on the shelf, right, all right. So that's my definition.

Speaker 1:

The book then comes out and talks about you know what they consider Some different scenarios of being humble or not being humble. So here's a couple of them need to be able to laugh at yourself. Humors, how you get through when all else looks helpless. You're not gonna be very good working with a team. In the book they really get into the management team and the structure that they create with the three executives and then they bring in a fourth at the end, and how fluid that is, and so I love that, and so I decided I would try to mimic that.

Speaker 1:

And you know, when you knock down information barriers, when you knock down the information hoarders, when you knock down the egos and the silos, you actually can have a management team like that and it feels really, really good and you get a lot of work done and you're able to work through problems. Otherwise you wouldn't have thought about. But you got to be able to laugh because you're gonna do stupid stuff. You're gonna do stuff that after fact, you find, because you surround yourself with really good people, they're gonna call you out every now and again that you're doing something stupid and if you can't laugh about it, you're gonna have a heart attack, you know, or brain aneurysm or something. You got to be able to laugh, man.

Speaker 1:

You are not being humble when you do the same thing, the same way, because you were anchored in pride. We're just gonna let that one go over and you're on to the next one, taking yourself so seriously. That's like the first one there. You are not being humble if you over project confidence or try to maintain control when you are not in a situation as good for the team and I skipped to this one instead of the previous two because I think it Encapsulates those a little bit too. Listen, man, just because you're in charge Doesn't mean you should be doing whatever you're doing.

Speaker 1:

When you are Responsible for something and you don't know what you're doing, you have to raise your hand and say I don't know what I'm doing, even if that means giving up a little bit of control. That's what it means to be humble. Being humble is not, I'm just gonna put my head down and take one for the team, grind through it. It's putting your hand up and saying I can't do this, I don't know how to do this. I need help with this. If you want me to do it, understand where I'm at with this and and the risk of that brings to the team. And still, if you want me to do I'm happy to try it then Not. Well, geez, you know, I just worked really hard and that should count for something. It doesn't count for anything. It really doesn't count.

Speaker 1:

If you just work really hard, if you were wholly inadequate for the position and you don't Acknowledge that, you are not humble. And the funny thing is is acknowledging it doesn't mean that you won't get the opportunity. Acknowledging it probably means that you'll get support, you'll get more resources, you'll get understanding. You'll actually get more accolades if you're successful because you've climbed a mountain. The great thing about humility is that it's about personal choice.

Speaker 1:

Think about humility as if you are running your own personal fortress, and you're. And what's a fortress designed to do? Is designed to keep outsiders, invaders, away. You're trying to keep. You know you're trying. You're up at the top of the hill. You're trying to prop up your civilization. You're trying to show this beacon of safety, basically, or, or you know, control like this is a good place to be. And so I built the fortress because of when, when all else fails, I can pull up the gates and I can defend the hill, and that's going to Scare outsiders away, invaders away. They're not gonna want to Mess with everybody because they're going to have to take on the fortress and the fortress has lots of guns and walls and tracks and people and all that kind of stuff, resources, and it will cause them mass losses if they're going to try to conquer it. So you have a fortress and you're in charge of this fortress and On most days, most days, like 99 out of 100 days, you want that fortress to be inviting the gates down.

Speaker 1:

The banners are blown in the wind, the markets open, we're open for business, people are coming and going. They want to be around it. There's entertainment, there's lots of laughing, there's people communicating. It's a nice place to be. People want to be there. But there's also war mode and every now and then, that one out of a 90, one out of a hundred. We got to go to war mode. We got to protect ourselves from the outside invaders. This is back to our definition.

Speaker 1:

You have to know when to use your position Right, when to show people who you really are. That's war mode. War mode the gates drawn, your guns are showing your teeth are you're showing how sharp your teeth are? Right, the streets are empty. They're closed. You're you're using the weight of your position. You're making sure everybody knows that you're in charge and you're going to defend. You're telling the outsiders you want to come here. You're gonna have to conquer me. You're postured in a way that Everybody understands what's going on. It's serious now. There's no laughs, right? It's not time to debate and argue about things. It's time to get in line. Every now and then you got to be postured like that but, like I said, it's very, very rare. So humility is understanding when you should be bringing that gate up and and doing that only when absolutely necessary and when that gate should be down and the market should be open and we should be allowing people To come and go and participate and have a positive experience. So humility is all about personal choice.

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