Ronald Reagan, the 40th President of the United States, took office in 1981 when the country was buried in the middle of a financial quagmire. Reagan wasted no time and began his term with sweeping economic reforms. Be it deregulation, tax incentives, capacity utilization or privatization – he addressed every issue with a lot of deftness, integrity and honesty. As a result, by 1989, the US was back on track towards becoming a widely respected, global superpower!
Before quitting office, Reagan was asked as to what he thought were the essential qualities of a good leader. He replied –
“The greatest leader is not necessarily the one who does the greatest things. Rather, he is the one that gets the people to do the greatest things.”
Despite the years that have passed, his statement holds credence even today!
Leaders are indeed the primary foundation upon which the success or failure of a community depends. They have the innate ability to help people achieve common objectives effectively and sustainably. They also possess the requisite skills to set direction, inspire vision, and bridge divides without leaving anyone behind. In fact, over 83% of businesses currently believe that it is pivotal to craft leaders with adequate leadership qualities, at almost all levels of an organization!
Although there are many leadership attributes which underline the making of a good leader, listed here are the top 10 leadership qualities which can empower people to start leading from the front –
Honesty is by and large considered to be one of the most important leadership qualities that a good leader must possess. This is because honesty constitutes the building block of integrity and trust. Honest leaders can act as a constant motivating force while being perceived as truthful, sincere, and unbiased at all periods. Such a sense of unwavering faith helps these leaders push their followers towards better achievements.
Irrespective of how dark the situation might be, the true test of a good leader lies in their ability to derive positivity from it. If a leader can utilize every available opportunity without losing morale, they would be held in high regard by almost everyone. Optimism, therefore, becomes a primary leadership attribute which doesn’t just help instil confidence in leaders of various hues but also allows them to learn lessons and strive for the best.
One of the most significant qualities of good leaders is their capacity to act with sensitivity, humility, and empathy towards everyone on their team. A sense of compassion permits leaders to understand their subordinates and treat them with consideration. However, sensitivity does not imply tolerating rule violation or shoddy performance. If the need arises, leaders should be able to act stringently and yet remain perceptive.
Transparency in operations and decisions is an essential leadership attribute that leaders across the world try to practice regularly. Transparency, as a leadership quality, illustrates trust and genuineness while also strengthening autonomy. A strong leader does not hide information, seeks the opinions of others, and offers clarity on every single issue at hand.
The passion for achieving definite objectives and in the process, pulling everyone along, is seen as one of the most pivotal qualities of a good leader. Passionate leaders don’t just order their team members around aimlessly. Rather, they infuse them with vigor and confidence, so that they can work relentlessly towards the achievement of a common goal. As the passion of leaders gets reflected in the conviction of followers, this leadership attribute becomes quite valuable.
6. Communication Ability
The ability to communicate candidly and clearly is one of the foremost characteristics of a leader. Leaders are primarily required to convey messages, build strategies, and resolve grievances on an everyday basis. This can only be done by the power of proper verbal and non-verbal speech. Communication, in fact, forms the building block of all other leadership qualities because it helps leaders liaise, influence, inspire and understand.
Leaders in communities and organizations across the world tend to be identified by the courage that they display in difficult times. As a leadership attribute, courage is simply a must for overcoming criticism and delivering outcomes. Courage can either be physical or moral. While the former prepares leaders to risk material harm, the latter equips them to follow their convictions with absolute confidence and certitude.
Out of the many qualities of a good leader, their ability to take strategic decisions backed by a futuristic vision stands out of the crowd. A visionary leader has a clear idea of what they intend to achieve in the short and long run. A concrete vision is a leadership quality that can be used to tap into the potential of others and help them turn mere paper-based propositions into actual, real-time success stories.
Despite living in a digitally powered, technological world, leaders are expected to be creative and innovative at all times. While technology can find solutions to most problems, the qualities of a good leader entail being able to improvise and think out of the box in ways that a computer cannot. Promoting freethinkers, delegating power, and encouraging unique ideas are some necessary leadership qualities which propel most leaders towards greatness.
Last but not least, a leadership attribute that is valued across various cultures is accountability. Leaders should explain all their actions, chalk out the reasoning behind their decisions, and take responsibility in case anything goes wrong. This fundamental characteristic of a leader can end up endearing them to a broad set of organizations, teams, and followers.
The Way Forward
In the contemporary world, the importance of good leadership attributes cannot be overstated. Leaders don’t just foster instant communication or deliver successful outcomes – they also strengthen decision making, intensify long-term commitment and thereby, lead by example.
While some people believe that the characteristics of a leader cannot be inculcated, years of intensive research has proven otherwise. It is indeed possible to hone your skills and acquire essential leadership attributes by learning in a dynamic environment.
If you want to begin your journey of imbibing topmost leadership qualities – you can start here. Shaw Academy’s online leadership and management course won’t merely develop your enterprising and entrepreneurial approach, but it will also broaden your horizons, brush up your creativity, and nurture the best qualities of a good leader within you!
Register for this professional course now!