Walking the Talk with the Nine Habits of Trust: Choosing to Be Humble at National Accident Law

At NAHL Group, our commitment to being a trustworthy business to both work in and with is one of the cornerstones of what makes our Group of companies different to so many others. The Trusted Executive programme is key to this and we’ve been hearing about the Nine Habits of the programme from the perspective of a number of our leaders. In today’s blog we catch up with Lee Hamilton, Head of Portal at National Accident Law, and he tells us why habit No.6, choosing to be humble, makes such a difference.

The Trusted Executive really matches the culture of the business overall – it fits with its Values basis and sits well with what we’re trying it achieve with our internal and external customers. It allows our leaders to reflect and challenge themselves on how rounded they are as professionals and people. It directs us to truly consider how good we are as leaders, people managers and individuals.

The nine habits of trust model

Be Humble – what does that mean?

At National Accident Law the leaders of the business don’t have individual offices, we sit in the open plan office as one team which recognises that everyone plays a part and is absolutely key to our success. For me, the Be Humble habit keeps everyone grounded, it removes the damaging elements of ego that can cause bad feeling and upset the balance of the office atmosphere. For NAL, if people were shut away in offices we wouldn’t have the open communication that builds the strength of purpose that we need in order to grow.

We currently we have some system challenges which, while not being the core part of my role, I’ve been getting involved in trying to resolve. It means that I’m getting back into the detail of cases, working through them to counteract the issues the system is throwing up. I hope that this kind of activity demonstrates that we’re all prepared to do what’s necessary to get the job done. Doing this means that my day to day job is put on hold and gets picked up later. Everyone at NAL works in the same way and it’s been pivotal in ensuring we’re moving towards where we need to be.

Humility builds the right culture

The idea of being humble for a leader isn’t traditional so it’s unusual for it to be given the same standing as other more traditional habits like choosing to deliver (habit no.1). For humility to have such a focus is really important as far as I’m concerned. Whatever job you have in the business, humility is key to our culture and what we bring to it. It’s what makes us different and able to deliver against such big targets and to do such ground-breaking work.

As long as everyone respects each other and appreciates that colleagues across the business have challenges where they may need support, guidance and help can create a great sense of team. I’d like us to oversee those challenges together. There’s a risk that, due to our busyness, we can become insular and not ask for help but there are so many people who are able and happy to help and give support in order to build a stronger workforce that this can be so great.

Humility – building an even stronger business

I think if we all take ourselves out of our own shoes for a moment and think about others and the issues they might be facing then that sense of working together for a common goal can really become second nature. I see the Be Humble habit as going hand in hand with, habit No.9, choosing to be kind (another unusual one for the business world!). It’s that sense of looking out for others, helping and respecting one another. I think we have a strong ethic of that here already which is great and I know that we can keep building on it to, ultimately, build an even stronger business.

For more information on the Trusted Executive Foundation please refer to this short introductory video. As a first step on the journey of trust, individual and organisational trust surveys based on the nine habits are available. Please contact The Trusted Executive Foundation for further information