As a leader in business and life your ability to demonstrate “Humility” and what I call “Shutupness” is so critical to your business/life success. Let’s take the common view of leadership some say that in order to be an effective leader one has to exert control, have a dominant/forceful personality…a General Patton by standards. We’ve all had bosses that have those types of traits and while I’m not here to say one or two specific attributes can dictate someone’s ability to be an effective leader a “My Way or The Highway” approach has long passed. When I hear someone say that another person is “Humble” why is the immediate thought “Oh ok that person is weak, soft or passive”? Our society (Corporate America included) has become a vicious dog-eat-dog environment so “only the strong survives” mentality pervades. Well, having humility in ones self is not a sign of weakness but a “Sense Of Self”…and we all can agree that having a sense of self is a sign of confidence…a leadership trait. I for the life of me do not know where this thought of humility equates to weakness comes from, my only guess is not many people actually know the meaning of humility. “Humility” is the state or quality of being humble; absence of pride or self-assertion…a sense of one’s self/purpose. Exercising the “Humility” trait as a leader helps you define your ability to lead with openness, patience, transparency, integrity, and support of others and to others. People will follow you if you have their best interest no more/no less your opportunity to lead is not a selfish act it’s an unselfish act that is a form of “Humility”. “Shutupness” is a word I made up, trust me you will not find this term in the dictionary. Why is it those in positions of authority NEVER SHUT UP? You see it everyday on TV on the Internet our so-called leaders are the main ones talking…. you never see them “LISTENING”. Someone coined a long time ago that the person who does the most talking in the room is the designated leader where does that come from when the other people in the room want them to SHUT UP!
So, my personal definition of the word “Shutupness” comes when someone exercises constraint and patience due to being sincerely interested in listening to what the other person(s) has to say. Yes, “Listening” can be the dictionary term for “Shutupness” but it’s not just listening (which a lot of us still need to work on) it’s the respect we have for one another to not always be fascinated with hearing ourselves blabber.
Two skills every leader should have are “Humility” & “Shutupness” skills which are easily attainable it just takes….”Humility” and “Shutupness” to consistently master.
By Andre’ Harrell (AH2 & Beyond Consulting)