What is the difference between confidence and arrogance (Part 2 of 2)?
Great article, Roz! I agree that a confident person does not exhibit arrogance, but rather is comfortable in her own skin and eager to continue to learn and improve, and welcomes the opinions and expertise of others. A confident person is curious and open-minded instead of defensive when others disagree with her opinions or offer another point of view. A confident person wants to know why people disagree with her, and moves forward in enlightenment; an arrogant person shuts them down and retreats into ignorance. Confidence and leadership go hand in hand and propel people forward, while arrogance isolates and causes regression. They are polar opposites – Jeanne Nelson, PROWESS Workshops, prowessworkshops.com
I have to say that of the many, many posts that I have written since launching The Remarkable Leader Blog no other with the exception of The “Dress for Success” Myth or Why the “It Is Better To Look Good Than Feel Good” Approach Doesn’t Work! and, Is your boss trying to sabotage your career series, has generated as much buzz as Part 1 of the difference between confidence and arrogance post.
In fact several LinkedIn group discussions have presented countless responses offering a variety of perspectives on the difference between confidence and arrogance. However, it was a comment by Jeanne Nelson that caught my attention, which is why I shared it with you in the opening paragraph of today’s submission.
From my standpoint, Jeanne’s thoughts provide an accurate description of the values that define both a confident and arrogant personality type.
Within this context, let’s delve a little deeper into how a confident person’s values and the corresponding character traits are reflected in their actions.
There are times where you will be expected to demonstrate courage to do the right thing when others aren’t stepping up to the plate. This may mean that you have to say something that no one else wants to own or acknowledge but you know needs to be said for the benefit of everyone involved. In this regard it is all about intentions and motives in that you want to help to resolve a situation rather than pointing a finger or putting someone under the bus.
I was recently talking with a company President who confirmed the importance of intentions. He told me that he will always listen to someone when he knows they are truly interested in the direction of the company while avoiding the “blame” game.
Confidence in this example is demonstrated by the courage (character trait) to tell the truth, and to do so in a manner (intentions) that helps to build-up rather than tear down.
In the end, confidence is what I call an inside job. You have it when you have nothing to prove. You take a stronger position and stand out when you speak with confidence. You know that you’re not doing it to be recognized but you have a bigger goal in mind . . . to make a difference. As long as confidence – as a General at Quantico once told me – is married to humility, you’ll always be fine.
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