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Is ego hindering business transformation? Russell Watkins

Ego is a complex force that can either fuel success or hinder progress. Understanding its nuances and managing it effectively is crucial, especially in the context of driving transformative change within organisations.

But what exactly is ego? At its core, ego represents an individual’s sense of self-esteem, self-importance, and identity. As leaders, it’s often natural to exude confidence and assertiveness, traits often associated with a healthy ego. However, the challenge arises when these traits tip into the realm of egotism – a state characterised by excessive pride, self-centredness, and a disregard for others’ perspectives.


In British English, the word “egotistic” carries negative connotations, highlighting the cultural aversion to egotistical behaviour. This serves as a reminder that while confidence and assertiveness are valued in leadership, ego-driven actions can breed toxicity and impede progress.

Russell Watkins, Co-founder of Sempai®, a company specialising in Lean transformation, brings a unique perspective to this discussion. With his extensive experience spanning various manufacturing sectors, Russell is well-versed in the intricacies of organisational change and the role ego plays in either facilitating or obstructing progress.

At the Future of Manufacturing annual conference 2024, Russell will delve into the dynamics of ego within the context of business transformation. Drawing from real-life examples and reflective sessions, he will explore the fine line between assertiveness and egotism, shedding light on when and why ego tends to obstruct rather than propel business goals forward.

One of the key takeaways from Russell’s insights is the importance of effectively managing ego for positive outcomes. By fostering self-awareness and humility, leaders can navigate the complexities of organisational change without succumbing to the pitfalls of egotistical behaviour.

Moreover, Russell will highlight the positive aspects of ego, emphasising its potential as a driving force for innovation, resilience, and visionary leadership. When harnessed effectively, ego can fuel ambition and determination, leading to transformative outcomes for businesses.

Ready to learn, share, and be inspired with ideas to fuel your business growth? Join our annual conference for manufacturing leaders.

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