Why humble leaders are more popular

Leaders who are humble are better liked and more effective than those who do not demonstrate as much humility when directing others. This is the suggestion of new research to be published in the Academy of Management Journal, which showed admitting mistakes and highlighting the strengths of followers are factors at the heart of humble leadership.

Bradley Owens, Assistant Professor of Organisation and Human Resources at the University at Buffalo School of Management - which has been in operation since 1923 and houses students from all over the world - noted that while failure can be embarrassing, those who overcome their fears in this regard can find the process beneficial.

Mr Owens observed leaders who "broadcast their feelings as they work through the messy internal growth process will be viewed more favourably by their followers".

He added these individuals will have the ability to legitimise the journeys of those following them and are likely to have organisations performing to a higher standard.

Emma Donaldson-Feilder, Chartered Psychologist, commented: "It is clear from a range of resource sources that authenticity and integrity are important qualities in leaders.

"This research study reinforces that message and adds an interesting element relating to humility and openness about feelings.

"It seems that a combination of humility and awareness of strengths would be a powerful and believable leadership approach - important not only for performance, but also for engaging and showing care for employees."