Confidence is generally a respectable and necessary workplace trait.
However, there is a darker side to confidence.
People who display overconfidence, hubris, and narcissism engage in self-destructive behaviors at work because their self-aggrandizement blinds them from their personal judgment and their managerial and leadership performance.
If you believe you may be displaying any of the following signs of excessive confidence, you need some coaching and feedback. Ask a trusted friend, colleague, or mentor for some honest feedback. Work to change your attitude—promptly.
- You tend to believe that your ideas are the only ones worth acting on. When others contribute ideas and suggestions, you tend to turn them off while promoting only the ideas that you come up with. You tend to get angry with others for their unwise and impractical suggestions. You are resistant to learning from others or from previous experiences.
- You tend to act on solutions without input from others. You believe that it is up to only you to supply new ideas and solve problems. You are convinced that you are the only one who knows as much as necessary to do the right thing. When others summon up ideas and suggest watch-outs, you tend to brush them off with “I know that” statements.
- You tend to express an opinion on everything—even when the topic of interest is outside your area of expertise. You act as if you’ve accepted the reality that you have to work with less-qualified people who just can’t get the right things the right way (i.e. your way.) If only your opinions were considered and if you had your way, your team and company would do “so much better.”
- You tend to defend your mistakes and your failures. You don’t recognize your limitations and the mistakes of your ways. You can’t take help. You are closed off to others’ feedback and suggestions for change.
- You tend to externalize blame. You’re often a victim of everyone else’s failures or a victim of external circumstances. You gripe that others just don’t understand you or they aren’t qualified enough to see the wisdom of your ways.
If you can’t recognize and accept the problems related to how your behavior comes across to other people, you may be derailing your managerial and leadership potential.
Idea for Impact: Greatness lies in balancing self-assurance with self-effacement. I recommend leadership coach extraordinaire Marshall Goldsmith’s outstanding What Got You Here Won’t Get You There. Addressing already-successful people, Goldsmith describes how personality traits that bring you initial career success could hold you back from going further!