Most companies have a no assholes rule. We do too. But there are many people who would pass the asshole test but not the ego test. And ego is the far more dangerous disease. Assholes are not contagious but ego is because it creates an arms race of competing egos. Anyone can be a victim but executives are the most susceptible making it an attack on our central nervous system. I would rather hire the humble asshole than the arrogant nice guy.
6. Always pass on ego For most of this talk I have talked about signals to hire. I’ll conclude with a signal to not hire. Confidence and ego are opposites. Modesty and humility are traits of the strong. Ego and arrogance is a disease of the weak and insecure. The truly confident don’t need people to know they are great. They are happy to know it themselves. And the truly Great use their greatness to make those around them greater.