5 Traits of Good Leaders

Posted on 18th March 2021

Every business or organisation needs good leadership. Inadequate or bad leadership creates problems that can create reputational damage, diminish the ability to achieve business goals and can have a negative impact on everyone within the organisation. Good leaders tend to show traits which successfully steer the course even when the inevitable challenges occur.

Driven Visionaries

A good leader paints an inspiring picture of the future. They are inspirational figures.

They inspire commitment by defining great possibilities and give a positive image of success that is exciting and creates a desire to be part of it. Good leaders tend to have the drive and optimism to work towards their big vision.

Strong work ethic

Most good leaders are very driven with a work ethic that goes over and beyond what an average person might be prepared to do. This tenacity and work ethic might be overwhelming for some as it is a quality that can stand in sharp contrast to the tendency to clock watch as goal completion is of paramount importance. This tends to be balanced with an ability to unwind and take time out.

Competent communicators

There are many leaders that inspire others simply based on their verbal communication skills, but competent communication is not just about good oratory. Good leaders tend to listen as much as they talk. They understand the benefits of getting different perspectives and taking in information as well as giving directions.

Objective decision making

An extraordinary trait of all good leaders is an ability to keep subjective opinions that are not backed by evidence or facts away from their decision making. It’s very remarkable as it seems to be the converse of how bad leader operate and make decisions.

High degree of self awareness

This is one of the most distinctive traits of a good leader. Being very clear about strengths and weaknesses requires emotional intelligence a component of self-awareness.

Interestingly, although there is a popular view that good leaders are born and not made, this is not necessarily the case. With the right support, a bad leader can become a good leader. Skills and competencies can be developed and anyone that starts a new regime at a gym will be able to attest to the fact that muscles need training, and training needs to be consistent and even when it’s painful – you stick with it until you see the results. Acquiring leadership skills is very similar to this process. Research from psychologists indicates that whilst it is true that some people possess intrinsic leadership qualities, leadership competencies can be developed.

A good starting point to developing or acquiring leadership skills would be to start with a personal development plan, find a good mentor or coach and take the first steps no matter how painful to becoming the leader you desire to be.

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