April 17, 2017

Humble Leadership

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A Note from Luminex: This morning’s blog post is the fifth in a 10-week series on leadership. Enjoy!

Recently, as a leader of a group working on a project, I asked one of our team members what he was seeing concerning our project — big picture.  That led to a 30 minute conversation.  That also led to a long email that this team member sent me a couple of days later thanking me for asking the question.  In the email, he stated that he had been doing similar work for almost six years and no one had bothered to ask what he was seeing concerning the big picture.

I’ve been thinking about that – why wouldn’t a leader ask for input?  I answered my own question a few days later when I went into another meeting to give an update on something else I was working on.   During this update meeting, I was a bit frustrated as the group began to give me feedback.  Later, I realized I was frustrated because what I really wanted was for this group to simply agree with me instead of offer honest feedback.  Sounds silly, I know, but that’s the truth.  It is also true that the honest feedback from the group helped me see some things I would not otherwise have seen.

In the Bible, James quotes Proverbs 3:34 as he offers, “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”  (James 4:6).  Part of being an effective leader is having the humility to listen to others, including God.

In our better moments, we know this.  We know that on our own, we do not have everything we need to lead well.  That is part of the reason we pray and read the Bible.  That is why we spend time with a coach.  That is why we put teams together to do important things.

How open are you to humbling yourself and receiving the grace of God?  How open are you to humbling yourself and receiving help, encouragement, and honest feedback from others?

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