Talking about vulnerability. Good follow-up to a talk on humility.
How he came to this view on the importance of vulnerability: His faith, the example of his dad growing up, experience as a consultant right out of college — they were told “always look smarter than your clients, etc.” Wasn’t real.
The desire to avoid vulnerability in our society stems from our over valuing of avoiding suffering and difficulty. People say “no, always be on, always make yourself strong.” But there is something attractive about people that are humble and vulnerable.
The three fears that keep us from being vulnerable.
1. Fear of losing the business
Another way to say it: Fear of being rejected.
Rejection is something we are called to — Christ was rejected. We have to be willing to be rejected. “Enter the danger.”
We have to speak the kind truth. Can’t have “terminal niceness” in our churches. We fall into it because we don’t want to be rejected.
People are hungry for those who will tell them the kind truth.
Don’t be afraid of being rejected. 8 out of 10 times you won’t be. But sometimes you will — and you have to accept that.
[My observation: Just make sure you really are accurate about the truth and what needs to be done and how you are assessing the situation. If you tell the kind truth, but are actually wrong, that’s not helpful!]
2. The fear of being embarrased
When we’re serving others, we have to do things that could embarrass us. We need to be willing to say “I don’t understand that.”
Your job is not to look smart, but to help them do better. If you are editing yourself to manage your own image, people will not trust you and you will not inspire them.
Be willing to ask dumb questions!
Celebrate your mistakes.
3. The fear of feeling inferior
Be willing to put yourself in a lower position. This is what Jesus did: washed the disciples feet.
Sometimes people aren’t going to reward you for doing the dirty work. But you should do it anyway.
This is about honoring your client’s work: being so interested in them that you care more about their success than your own.
There’s a standing ovation for Lencioni.
(Note: Lencioni just found out he was speaking this week, as he took Howard Schultz’s slot after he withdrew.)