In many lists, the seven deadly sins are given as follows: lust, gluttony, greed, sloth, anger, envy, and pride. The last one, pride, may not even be a sin since pride in one’s workmanship has produced many fine objects. The synonym for pride, arrogance, has no redeeming features whatsoever. .. and it can indeed be a deadly sin.
These thoughts came to mind in reading a post by Mathew Ingram, someone who is often worth reading. You might have realized he was talking about his industry, newspaper publishing, when he titled his post, “Don’t despair – okay, maybe just a little“. He is commenting on AP chief executive Tom Curley‘s closing speech at the Knight-Bagehot dinner held in Toronto this week. His main topic was on the evolution that is necessary in the newspaper industry if it is to grow and prosper.
Ingram was particularly struck by one saying from Curley. “The first thing that has to go is the attitude. Our institutional arrogance has done more to harm us than any portal.” That institutional arrogance is equally a deadly sin in many other large companies and organizations. That arrogance can blind individuals to the changes going on around them. That arrogance can blind corporations to the true needs of their customers. Well said, Mr. Curley. It’s a deadly sin that’s certainly worth avoiding.