Humility in Business


In one of my internet searches, I found a speech by Mr Mahindra of Mahindra Rise group. The speech was delivered to a group of graduates but attracted me because it was about what they don’t teach at business schools. As a teacher on the MBA course, I wanted to know what we are missing and as it happens, that speech did hit the nail on the head.

These are some of the things an MBA course will definitely not teach the students. Humility, brevity of communication and self knowledge. Even the top business schools cannot deliver or test students on their abilities to remain humble whilst working with people who might not have been fortunate enough to attend a business school. The speech also emphasised the leadership skills of the speaker. More often than not, leaders assume that they are in this special position because they know more than the others who work for them.

Successful entrepreneurs must understand that their role is to pull together resources that will make their businesses successful, they must employ people who are smarter than them, who may challenge their thinking and most importantly; communicate their dreams with brevity. More often than not, it is easy to keep ideas and aspirations in the head of the entrepreneurs to the point where the business barely functions when the leader is not in situ.


A business set up on the foundation of one person will struggle to survive into the future and will find it tough to compete in a complex and competitive world.

Organisations function well when the leader is humble enough to understand that the overall goal of the organisation is much bigger than the individuals within that organisation.

Best regards.

Dr.Ade Otukoya  B.Sc, LLB, FCCA, MBA, PhD