5 Leadership Skills We Can Learn From Ants

By Leslie Anglesey

Updated Over a Week Ago

Minute Read

Ants and leadership skills?

OK, I’m about to ask you a weird question, but please indulge me just this once. Have you ever tried looking at things from an ant’s perspective?

I mean, have you ever tried to view the world as if you were an ant? If you answered yes, then that’s great, but I might add that it’s a bit weird as well.

I haven’t tried it myself, but I think I’m about to. Why, might you ask? While I was at Starbucks devouring my favorite Chicken BLT Sandwich, I couldn’t help but notice how an ant (yes, I’m talking about just one ant!) lifted a crumb that looked four times its size. It’s incredible how the ant took on the task, no matter how big and intimidating it might look.

That observation got me thinking if I were the ant, would I have lifted the huge crumb, or would I just back away and give all sorts of reasons like “It’s way too heavy” or “I don’t want to dirty my ant hands” so that I won’t have to carry it?

We Can Learn a Lot From Ants

I have to say that I can’t tell (which is why I was contemplating seeing things from an ant’s perspective). In any case, what became clear to me is that there are many things that we can learn from ants.

Ants have a lot of traits that, when we apply them to our business and leadership skills, will undoubtedly yield dramatic results.

What kind of traits am I talking about?

Let me share a few of them:

1. Ants Aren’t Intimidated by the Size of Their Workload

  • Ants aren’t intimidated by the sheer size of the objects that they need to carry, so why should we?
  • Most of us have goals that we’d like to achieve (If you don’t, then you’re in trouble). These goals can be very huge and may seem way bigger than what we can handle.
  • In situations like these, people tend to shy away from their real goals and try to map out goals that are way easier to achieve. I mean, being realistic is important. If you set goals that aren’t attainable, you’ll only end up frustrated and demotivated in the end. But you should think about the real reason why you made your goal easier. Is it because it isn’t really attainable, or are you intimidated by it?
  • Remember that human potential cannot be taken lightly. No matter how seemingly impossible your business goals are, I want to remind you of the saying, “When there’s a will, there’s a way.” Think about how ants tackle their seemingly impossible tasks and made them possible.
  • A mindset like that will get you the business success you’ll surely be proud of.

2. Ants Value Teamwork

  • A single ant can only do so much, but when they work as a team, they are able to achieve greater heights!
  • Ants don’t just leave their “fellow ants“ alone when carrying huge objects; they help each other, making it possible for them to achieve their goals.
  • When applied to your business, this kind of leadership and teamwork will make your business process work like clockwork! If you aren’t sold on how valuable teamwork is, think about Kobe Bryant playing against the entire Chicago Bulls team alone. Kobe may be the best, but against five players with cohesive teamwork, his skill won’t amount to anything. That said, if you want quality results, then starting with quality teamwork is definitely the way to go.

Ants don’t just leave their “fellow ants“ alone when carrying huge objects, they help each other, making it possible for them to achieve their goals.

3. Ants Are Organized

  • Isn’t it amazing that even when so many ants carry a single object, they seem to be moving in the same direction?
  • They are so organized in how they carry out their tasks that they are able to accomplish them no matter how big the task is.
  • Can you imagine your business processes having the same level of organization? Can you imagine how much your business can accomplish if your employees work towards the same goal?
  • Ants are awesome creatures as they are, but when humans get organized and work towards achieving one goal, they can move mountains!
  • If you’re a business leader or owner, you should make it a point to get your team organized and working towards the same goals. If you can make this happen, it’ll just be a matter of time before you’ll start experiencing the success that you’ve been yearning for!

4. Ants Save for Rainy Days

  • I’m sure that even you’ve seen it yourself. Ants don’t just eat on the spot even when they see a HUGE Chicken BLT Sandwich (I find it miraculous for anyone to resist it! Even if we’re talking about ants!); they try to carry the food to their ant colony and save up for the rainy days (at least that’s how it looks like to me)!
  • When applying this to your business, it isn’t wise to keep on spending the moment you see the slightest available cash you can spend. Remember that you can never really tell what might happen in the future. That said, having your reserves up will surely help you cope with unforeseen things.

5. Ants Get the Job Done

  • I’ve never seen a group of ants leave what they’re carrying and just call it a day! They persevere and make sure that they get the job done!
  • Whether they work in shifts or they have some magical way of transporting huge objects, that’s just minor detail. The main point is they get the job done in the end. Period!
  • Can you imagine what your business would be like if you had employees with that kind of commitment? Can you imagine how much your business can accomplish if you all have the same mindset as the ants toward finishing their job?
  • That right there is a golden nugget that everyone should pick up. The more things we finish, the faster we can move on to other things that will help you advance your business.

Isn’t it amazing how these ants have the blueprint for a business’s success?

If they were businessmen, they’d probably own everything on the planet. The good thing is we can observe them and learn from them.

We can break down their traits bit by bit and integrate them into our business process, making our businesses more productive.

I urge you to take the time and reflect on the traits that these ants have and how you can apply them to your business.

I’m sure you’ll have tons of million-dollar ideas that you can take away from it.

As an important note, you should remember that reflecting and learning the concept behind it is one thing, but actually applying it is another.

Do not leave this on your thinking pad, but take the necessary steps to implement the traits. It is only when you start applying these concepts that you’ll start seeing results.

What Have You Learned from Ants?

If you have learned something from ants that you think might be helpful to readers, share them in the comments section below.

Would you like to contribute a post?

Leslie Anglesey
Leslie Anglesey
Leslie is a writing specialist, educator and contributor to paper writing company EssayTigers. She is a networking expert and a guest speaker at university seminars.
  • Thank you very much for this awesome insight. what a wonderful write up.

  • Jonathan Herrera says:

    Proverbs 6:6-11 KJV
    [6] Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise: [7] Which having no guide, overseer, or ruler, [8] Provideth her meat in the summer, and gathereth her food in the harvest.

  • agbor princeley says:

    Ants they have a sense of responsibility

  • Ants work without supervision. They know what to do and go for it.

  • Ant’s are really amazing creatures! Tiny and yet well determined and very organized.

  • That is very true; everybody should have faith and confidence in themselves.

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