When it comes to leadership, it seems the attributes that are unseen are the most powerful in the long run of a leaders legacy: honesty, integrity, etc.  The potency of these underground vitals cannot be ignored but must continue to be cultivated, nurtured and grown in us as leaders.   There is one attribute that seems to be one of leadership's best and possibly the most powerful.  As a matter of fact, once you master it, it promises promotion, power and elevation. {James 4:10/Matthew 23:12}

You're not that big of deal even though others might say you are.

I read recently a story about Roman Generals. The leadership of these men would be honored with a triumph, a procession of honor, through the city celebrating that general's successful conquests.  While the people are recognizing the strength of the general, a slave would hold a laurel wreath above the head of the general while speaking this in his hear during the entire procession, "Hominem Te Memento" which means "Remember you're only a man...."  Basically, that slave is commissioned to tell him continuously "you're not that big of a deal even though others say you are."  As leaders we need the voice of humility to keep us grounded, modest, courteous and respectful reminding us of who we are. 

I draw less attention to myself when I am more comfortable with myself. 

As a leader, humility is not denying your strengths but embracing your weaknesses.  I'm not saying improve your weakness so they aren't weaknesses anymore.  We have to manage our weaknesses and improve our strengths.  Humility realizes there are great parts about you along with your flaws. The more honest I am about my strengths and weaknesses the more humble I will become.  Humility is not thinking less of me but thinking more about God.  Giving God credit to my successes and owning my own failures.  It's connecting all my blessings back to God and celebrating others success.  The more comfortable I am with being me the more I don't need others to approve me.  I draw less attention to myself when I am more comfortable with myself.

You can compare yourself to others success or you can contribute to others success.

Humble leaders want others to shine.  They genuinely get excited about the growth of other organizations and the influence of others.  You can compare yourself to others success or you can contribute to their success.  Gut check:  If a successful leader fails, are you broken over their loss or thinking "I knew they didn't have what it takes"?  If an organization crumbles, do you think "I knew it wouldn't last" or do you pray for the people involved?  If a successful leader becomes more influential, do you say, "their success is all about them" or do you say, "God use them to make a difference"?  

I think a good starting place for humility to grow in you is to consider others better than yourself {Philippians 2:3-5}.  Humble leaders want others to shine and they do this by:

Fostering collaboration.  Humble leaders realize that they can't do it themselves.  They realize they can get new creativity, more traction and better ideas when they bring others to the table.  They see the gifts and talents of others and aren't threatened by their ideas or talents.  Humble leaders find ways to elevate those around them to become better.  If someone has spent time with you, are they better human beings, feel inspired and a more refined follower of Christ?   

Building trust.  It means your are humble enough to be authentic and comfortable in your own skin and that genuineness translates to others opening up to you, becoming vulnerable with you and ultimately trusting you.  Not only are they open with you but it means you are open with them.  It means you are being honest with others and sharing the truth when it's difficult.   A humble leader says, "you can trust me with your life because I can be trusted with mine." 

Celebrating often.  A humble leader knows when to see someone doing good and making it known.  They are quick to not just call out the bad to show their "leadership strength" but even quicker to to celebrate the good they are doing and make it known.  That's why "celebrating wins" is a good practice for any leader.  To highlight what someone else did in your organization or group takes the attention from you to others.  

Have I told you you're awesome today?