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Why Humility Plays an Important Role in an Entrepreneur's Life Humility is a vital entrepreneurial quality needed for success

By Sanchita Dash

You're reading Entrepreneur India, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.

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In our day to day life we always keep in mind the polite nature of a shopkeeper or an individual providing us with the services and it's the same polite nature which makes that person or place the obvious choice for us.It's actually the behaviour which can make or break the prospects for an entrepreneur.

As in every profession, humility is an important trait an entrepreneur should possess. Being humble takes one ahead in the long run in their personal as well as professional lives. In entrepreneurship, humility takes a greater role.

When you are starting from scratch, it is your nature that also helps attract the right talent in your direction. Similarly, as one grows it is their humility that keeps them in touch with the ground reality and also develop a persona that is loved by all.

Entrepreneur India spoke to startup founders about how they have realized that in order to be successful; being humble plays an important part.

Vital to an Entrepreneur's Success

Humility is a vital entrepreneurial quality to success. Saahil Goel, CEO and Founder, Kraftly believes that leaders from all walks of industry need to realize the importance of being humble in personal as well as professional life. Goel goes on to quote Rick Warren, "True humility is not thinking less of yourself; it is thinking of yourself less."

Helps Keep Your Goals Clear

Being humble about your work, you always leave room for improvement. Advait Kumar, Co-founder, Swajal, believes that humility keeps an entrepreneur grounded in reality and keeps their goals clear. Kumar also spoke about how Bezos in a recent interview when asked about a company disrupting Amazon said - that it's not a question of if, it's a question of when. "Humility is a virtue that also allows you to stay ahead of the classic innovator's dilemma while your startup can be disrupting an incumbent your company might be the one to get disrupted in the next innovation cycle," said Kumar.

Kumar also believes that humility allows you to build and lead an effective organization which is aware of the reality of challenges. As an entrepreneur, you need to have the humility to take on any responsibility as your organization scales up, from going door to door as a salesman to calling customers personally. "Most startups fail due to a lack of self-awareness and over-optimism on their ability to solve their challenges," he said.

Instills the Right Culture

Culture plays a crucial role in a company's success. The values a founder lays down for his/her company defines the growth graph of the start-up. Monika Misra, co-founder, IKeva, believes that when you start a company you play every possible role – from a receptionist, to the IT guy and even the coder. "So when you grow as a company, remember to not look down upon those roles," she said.

Once a company turns profitable, it's not just the founder's success, believes Misra. She said that founders need to understand and acknowledge the participation of their employees in the company's success.

Agreeing with Misra, Ketan Kapoor, co-founder and CEO, Mettl, believes that a humble leader spawns other humble leaders around himself/herself. "It also bring a Higher attractiveness index - a humble leader is liked more by clients and employees that somebody who is not. You grow faster and can prevent risks because if an entrepreneur is humble, he/she is receptive to new ideas that help grow faster and prevents risks along the way," said Kapoor.

Keeps the Team Spirit Alive

Your Humility ensures that your employees respect you. Goel believes that humble leaders focus on the strengths of their team members which results in building the great organization. "The more a leader acknowledges the strengths of their team members, the chances of building a successful organization are higher," he said.

Goel added that even though you become an established entrepreneur, you should not forget that you need to be a true leader. Humility plays a major role in it and this has really helped us in building a team which knows how to stick together in crisis and celebrations. "Humbleness comes with selflessness. Once you accept the equality between your team and yourself, it helps in creating a healthy learning environment in the company," he said.

When you are building a team, every team member is aligned with your vision of the company and are more often than not, equally passionate about it. "You need to be humble towards accepting the team as an important part of successful delivery of any product," said Misra.

Sanchita Dash

Entrepreneur Staff

Former Senior Correspondent, Entrepreneur India

In the business of news for 5 years now. Making my way across India thanks to my career. A media graduate from Symbiosis, Pune, I have earlier worked with Deccan Chronicle (South India's leading English daily), T-Hub (India's largest incubator) and Anthill Ventures (a speed-scaling platform). 

Stories, movies and PJs are my thing. 

If you hear 'The Office' opening score randomly, don't worry it's just my phone ringing. 

 

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