Level 5 leaders embody an equal mix of personal humility and professional will. The book provides a good example of this type of mix with Abraham Lincoln. He never let his ego get in the way of the bigger picture of the country. He was shy and humble but never wavered on his will to get the country to a common ground.
Personal humility embodies an attribute in which most CEOs would laugh at if told this what makes up a Level 5 leader. In today’s business world, most CEOs like to show their ego publicly and credit the success of the company to themselves. Humility is not a natural gift, it starts with realizing your past failures and weaknesses. (“To be Humble,” 2003) Level 5 leaders realize their weaknesses and their company weaknesses. But what separates a Level 5 leader from others is the realization of these weaknesses and the correct steps to find a resolution.
Professional willaccompanies traits of determination and the willpower to do what is right for the company. The book provides a sufficient example with Colman Mockler, the CEO of Gillette. Many bids came from other companies in order to take over Gillette. Mocklershowed the professional will in which he would fight no matter what it took in order to keep the company. Although he would have received tremendous personal gain from this buyout, he could not waver the desire he had for the company. He fought to keep Gillette’s upcoming technology in razors on the map by personally calling investors to invest in the technology they were creating. In the end, Mockler’s determination helped drive Gillette to become a successful company that leads the market in technology razors.
Another Level 5 leadership trait in which the book does not go into detail about is taking risk and not having the fear of failure. In an article written by Tom McCarthy, there is a story that depicts when risk can become a leverage tool for others to manipulate the fear of failing. In the story, the director of sales is...