Whoa, wait a minute! What kind of title is that you might be asking! All of us have invariably been told by a professional colleague, a team partner, a work partner, a friend, or our significant other, "You are the best!" In short, you are not.
Success Doesn't Happen Alone
No honest person can claim success was done entirely on his or her own. Success is a combined, collaborative, or team effort. Always. Period. A critic could have inspired you to work harder. A partner could have helped you with a task that helped you complete a huge project. A signifcant other could have sacrificed quality time so that you could focus on finishing an important matter for a high-paying client. Whatever your successes may be, they were not achieved of your sole efforts. So, when we receive the compliment from our client, our significant other, or whomever is doling it out: "You are the best!" it is entirely possible (and even reasonable) to accept the compliment. But, there is a different way - acknowledging the efforts of those who made it possible.
Humility is Important
As humans, we want to be glorified, it's in our nature. From an evolutionary standpoint, those who were the most glorious, strong, and capable got the best mates, the most food, and survived the longest - it makes sense how that can transfer into the 21st century workplace. However, just like in the caveman days, one person didn't hunt the sabertoothed tiger or the wooly mammoth, it took a team. And while the hunters were out catching dinner, others stayed behind to protect and manage the community. Therefore, while it may be difficult to be humble, give it a try. When you're told, "you're the best!" or some similar compliment, redirect that compliment back with a "we" statement, such as: "it took team effort," or "I am grateful my wife watched the children for the 100th time or this wouldn't have gotten done," or "thank you, team work makes the dream work!" Don't misunderstand, you might have been (and likely were) the greatest contributor to the success for which you are being complimented, but you did not do it alone.
First, be humble. When you receive the compliment from a colleague, partner, or anyone who is recognizing your success, acknowledge those who were critical to you making that success a reality. Second, personally acknowledge the efforts to those individuals who helped you make the success a reality. Finally, encourage others around you to show humility, gratitude, and recognition of how their successes were possible in the first place.
Craig Reynolds is the Founder and Chief Creative Officer of Cardinal
Communications, Chief Creative Officer of the Feel You
App, Community Ambassador for W.L.J Angel
Gowns and proud parent of Cardinal Communications' Pooch Ambassador to Small Business, Rudy. Contact Us to learn how we can
help your small business or non-profit grow and succeed!
"Be Authentically You!"