“Leaders are not born, they are made”. When we think of the most famous people on Earth, we often get discouraged. We realize how great and amazing these leaders are, and we believe we can never reach their level. But what if we told you there is a way? What if we told you that you can become exemplary leaders by simply inculcating these 25 qualities of a good leader in your personality.
Most successful leaders that we see today have not had it easy. They have struggled quite a bit to reach the level of fame and respect that they enjoy today. From having an optimistic mindset to showing consistency, they have set the bar high for everybody.
If you want to follow in their footsteps and create a legacy for yourself, we suggest you focus on these 25 qualities of a good leader. These will prove to be a game changer for you- and your career.
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How Can Good Leadership Transform Your Career?
If you have to ask this question, chances are that you have not had a lot of success in your career so far, or you have not reached your full potential yet. But do not worry, success is not far away. By improving your leadership characteristics and making some necessary changes to your personality, you can achieve whatever you want.
Good leadership transforms your career in many ways. For starters, it makes you a formidable force in your office or your company. You are revered, not just by your clients and your peers, but also by your juniors. They start treating you with more respect and reverence.
Additionally, by having characteristics of good leadership, you increase your chances of getting ahead in the game and landing your dream position. From getting a quick promotion to getting into the limelight, you can turn the tables for yourself within a short time. Moreover, these qualities help you in getting good recognition.
On top of that, people who possess the qualities mentioned below are also able to build good relationships with their clients and their associates. From gaining their trust to getting their respect, these leaders are able to do it all.
So if things have been stagnant for you recently, and you are unable to figure out the issue, we suggest you try improving upon your leadership qualities.
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What Are the 25 Qualities of a Good Leader?
Most people have to go through a lot of trial and errors in life in order to find out the perfect blend of qualities that are fit for good leadership. But do not worry, we have the list of the 25 qualities of a good leader right here.
- Hires the Right People for the Right Job
- Empowers Others to Reach Their Full Potential
- Possesses Emotional Intelligence and Empathy
- Possesses Problem-Solving Skills and Capacity
- Shows Respect to Seniors and Juniors
- Has a Continuous Learning Attitude
- Has an Optimistic Mindset
- Encourages Strategic Thinking
- Delegates Tasks to Appropriate People
- Is on the Lookout for Other Emerging Leaders
- Validates and Appreciates Good Work
- Celebrates and Encourages Small Wins
- Possess Great Organizational Skills
- Is a Great Listener
- Acts as a Role Model to Others
- Coaches and Mentors Others
- Effective Communication and Good Articulation Skills
- Good Grip on Subject Knowledge
- Prioritize Relationship Building
- Is Consistent and Reliable in Personality
1. Hires the Right People for the Right Job
The primary job of a good leader is that they can realize the potential of somebody and then hire the right person for the right job. This means that good leaders should be able to keep their biases and their prejudices aside and think only about the greater good: in this case, the good of the company.
Leaders who fixate too much on unnecessary things like a candidate’s university degree or GPA and do not look at a person holistically often end up making bad decisions.
2. Empowers Others to Reach Their Full Potential
Once the leaders have hired the right people for the right job, the next thing they do is to empower these new employees so they can reach their full potential. New employees often make a lot of mistakes. This is not because they are stupid or not right for the job.
In most cases, new employees make mistakes because they are nervous and are trying to fit into their new jobs. Good leaders are able to realize this difference and go easy on these new employees. Additionally, they also empower their old employees so that the company can prosper together.
3. Possesses Emotional Intelligence and Empathy
Most leaders have a good IQ. They also have all the necessary skills and qualifications to be a leader. However, leaders often lack emotional intelligence and empathy and are unable to retain their employees. From bashing their employees unnecessarily to not giving them any concessions, these leaders end up inducing fear and hatred in the hearts of their employees.
All the above combined makes for an unsuccessful leader who is not able to create lifelong connections with their employees and their clients.
4. Possesses Problem-Solving Skills and Capacity
Some leaders are very resourceful and are always quick on their feet. As soon as a problem arises, they come up with a solution that can fix it all. However, these problem-solving skills become redundant when leaders do not have the capacity to fix anything.
It is hence important that leaders create ways to increase the revenue of their organizations. This not only adds to the budget allocated to different departments, but also allows leaders to have the necessary capacity to find appropriate solutions to problems.
5. Shows Respect to Seniors and Juniors
It is very easy to be respectful to your seniors: people who are responsible for giving you a leadership position and people who can take that job away from you. However, showing a similar level of respect to your juniors and the people at the end of the hierarchy can be pretty difficult.
Leaders who are consistent in their behavior and do not waver according to circumstances or people are often revered by others. They are loved and respected by their juniors, and equally respected by their senior management as well.
6. Has a Continuous Learning Attitude
Learning does not stop when you reach the top. Leaders who think of their learning process as a means to an end fail in the longer run. They start associating their struggle with their aspirations. Once they reach their aspirations, they are unable to look beyond and remain stagnant in their jobs.
Leaders who keep an open mind and are always looking to learn new things not only enhance their leadership capacity, but are also able to move with the times. They also feel much more secure in their roles as compared to leaders who don’t stop learning any new skills once they have reached a top position.
7. Has an Optimistic Mindset
Professor Dumbledore once said: “Happiness can be found in the darkest of times, only if one remembers to turn on the lights”. Failure and leadership go hand in hand; they are part of a package. Leaders who shy away from challenges because they are too afraid to fail to end up achieving the bare minimum. Having an optimistic mindset means that leaders can look beyond a crisis and not consider it as the end of their career.
However, optimism does not always come naturally to people. You have to make a conscious effort to remind yourself that there is a silver lining, even in a crisis situation. Reiterating positive words to yourself and your team can help you find opportunities even in the most difficult of times.
8. Encourages Strategic Thinking
Strategy is not stagnant. People who think of strategy as simply taking a decision can not be more wrong. Strategizing means finding the most appropriate solution to a complex problem. It allows leaders to compare the different alternatives they have and then choose an alternative that works in their favor.
Now, the problem with most leaders is that they want to take quick decisions. Strategic thinking takes time. A leader has to weigh all their options before they can reach a conclusive end.
9. Delegates Tasks to Appropriate People
Favoritism in the workplace does not only destroy your credibility, but it can also hamper your company’s progress. Imagine both Sarah and Anna working in an office. Anna is clearly more qualified than Sarah and has a lot of work experience. Sarah is relatively new but is very likable.
Now imagine the boss assigning a complex task to Sarah only because she is popular in the office and has good connections. In most scenarios, people like Sarah will disappoint and will not be ready enough to complete the task. As a result, both the leader’s reputation and the company’s progress suffer.
10. Is on the Lookout for Other Emerging Leaders
A leader who is unable to find and train new leaders is not a good leader in its truest sense. One of the best qualities of a good leader is that they can find hidden talents and bring them to the limelight. In any office, there are always employees who have all the characteristics of emerging leaders.
The job of a good leader is to only actively seek these people out, but also to hone and polish their skills, so they can reach the top managerial positions. This means that you will also have to play coach and mentor people who have leadership potential.
11. Validates and Appreciates Good Work
Most leaders reserve their appreciation for the best of works. They rarely give out compliments or praises. They may do this because they do not want their employees to get overconfident and then slack later. What these leaders do not realize is that a lack of appreciation can make employees lose all motivation.
This is why good leaders always validate the work of others. This does not equate to them handing out compliments all the time. However, when they see someone working hard and putting in the right energy, they take out time to appreciate the efforts of these employees.
12. Celebrates and Encourages Small Wins
Every leader celebrates big wins, however, there are very few leaders who celebrate the small wins and that is where they mess up. Imagine your company got a huge order that needs to be completed and shipped by the end of a year.
Now, will you be the kind of leader who only celebrates this achievement once you have shipped out the order and received the entire payment, or will you be the leader who celebrates every time the workers are able to exceed expectations for a given month? Leaders who celebrate small wins end up incentivizing their employees to do better. So make sure you do not reserve these celebrations for the bigger things only.
13. Possess Great Organizational Skills
In today’s chaotic world, a lot of people are undermining the importance of good organizational skills. There was a time when children were taught organizational skills as a necessary skill set, and rightfully so, too. People who can organize their belongings, their desks, and their offices, are often the ones who can organize their thoughts as well, too.
Good leaders have notepads, stationery, the necessary files, and all their belongings sorted into groups and sections. This allows them to save time and energy while finding things.
14. Is a Great Listener
It goes without saying that good leaders are good listeners. All the best training programs in the world like Best Diplomats will teach you how to speak well. They will also teach you how to articulate your thoughts and ideas into proper sentences. However, the ability to listen can not be taught anywhere; it only comes through conscious effort.
When you are heading a team, you need to be able to listen to their concerns and give good advice when necessary. Additionally, lending an ear to your employees also helps you gain trust in leadership. In the long run, leaders who listen well have a greater chance of being followed by their employees.
15. Acts as a Role Model to Others
When we think of great feminist leadership, we often think that these people inspired millions of others by simply existing. However, that is not the case. Leaders make a conscious effort to be as good as possible. They do not do this, so they can create a facade, rather they do this because they realize other people are looking up to them for inspiration.
Since leaders are followed by thousands or even millions of people, it is necessary for them to set the bar high. From inculcating exemplary traits of leadership to being the voice of reason and morality, they should do all they can to inspire the next generations.
16. Coaches and Mentors Others
It is good to be a role model to others. You end up inspiring a lot of people who work for you. However, leaders need to go the extra mile and ensure they are also mentoring people who work under them. A couple of ways to do this include
- Holding one on one meetings with individuals and coaching them.
- Holding team meetings where employees get a chance to know the leaders more closely.
- Conducting and sponsoring good training programs so that employees can fulfill their potential.
17. Effective Communication and Good Articulation Skills
We have already stressed the importance of having good listening skills. However, it goes without saying that communication skills are equally necessary. As a leader, you will often have to present complex ideas and strategies to your clients and your employees.
Now imagine that you are unable to articulate these ideas. Not only will you end up losing trust in your leadership, but you will also not have everyone come on board with you willingly. Good articulation and communication skills help you present the most complex of ideas in a simple way.
18. Good Grip on Subject Knowledge
If you are heading a manufacturing firm, you should have a good knowledge of the manufacturing process that occurs in your building. Similarly, if you are heading a school, you should also be well-equipped with the exam and specific subject knowledge.
Although it is not necessary to be an expert in the field, it does help make you a much more reliable leader in the eyes of others. Additionally, it helps you strategize better and come up with solutions to fix any problems that occur during your tenure.
19. Prioritize Relationship Building
More than profits, more than revenue, and certainly more than customer acquisition is a leader’s ability to not only build but also sustain relationships. As a good leader, you may be able to get a lot of clients on board. However, it will take skill and patience to retain these clients as well.
Make sure you work on your customer support and train your staff so that they deal with clients in the best possible way. Moreover, interject and interfere whenever you feel like a customer or a client is not being treated well. This extra effort will help you build customer loyalty. You will most probably end up having the same clients for the foreseeable future.
20. Is Consistent and Reliable in Personality
This is a quality that not only makes for a good leader, but also a good human being. And these two things go synonymously. Leaders who continuously showcase different personality traits end up losing trust in their leadership. Additionally, they come off as opportunist people who seldom care about others.
A couple of ways to build a consistent personality is to first list down all the attributes you want in your personality. These can include honesty, integrity, truthfulness, and compassion. Next, make a conscious effort to include these personality traits in yourself. This may take time, but you will be better off with it.
21. Time Management Is Key
People who do not respect other people’s time and are casually late to meetings or conferences end up leaving a very bad impression on their audiences. But this is just the tip of the iceberg. Leaders who can not manage their time often end up losing the trust of their clients.
From delaying orders to showing a casual attitude, they come off as non-serious. Additionally, bad time management creates a domino effect that impacts all the other timelines in your company. As a result, both you and your company suffer.
22. Long-Term Over Short-Term Benefits
As a leader, you sometimes have to make hard choices. You are often asked to make a trade-off between short-term and long-term benefits. The short-term benefit is immediate and will obviously bring a lot of praise to you. However, the long benefit will come slowly and will delay the validation you need.
As a leader, it can be tempting to choose short-term benefits at the cost of long-term benefits. However, before doing this, think of the kind of impact and progress the long-term benefits will provide and then choose wisely. In cases, where short-term benefits prove to be a means to an end, a way to achieve long-term benefits, there is no harm in welcoming them graciously.
23. Taking One for the Team
When failures hit you, remember that you accepted the leadership position with all its good, and bad. You can not enjoy the benefits and then run away at the first sign of trouble. When calamity hits you, make sure you show courage and faith in your team and be the bigger person.
Rather than finding faults in others and looking to put the blame on others, make sure you show grace and take one for the team. This will not invalidate your contributions to the company, and neither will it make others lose faith in you. On the contrary, it will increase the respect your team has for you because they know you will have their back come what may.
24. Inclusivity and Transformational Leadership Attribute
Hiring from a similar pool can be tempting. It is easier to work with people who share a similar background and expertise as you. However, diversity is much more valuable. One of the best qualities of a good leader is that they see beyond somebody’s race, religion or ethnicity.
They only value the expertise and skill set an individual brings to the table. A good leader also does not need HR policies to compel them to hire inclusively. They will do so because they believe in the beauty of diversity. Only will this mindset can a leader truly transform the company.
25. Knowing When to Step Down
Giving up on a position can be hard, especially when it comes with certain perks and privileges. However, knowing when to step down from a job is what good leaders do. It is almost an instinctive feeling. Now, there are two scenarios that can compel you to take this decision.
You should step down if you feel that the company is doomed to fail and will not survive in the changing times. You should give in your all, but once you have tried down every road, you should graciously accept that the company will not grow.
Secondly, you should step down if you are not what the company needs. If your skill set or aspirations do not align with the vision of the company, make sure you leave your job and look for something that is more in line with your goals.
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How Can Best Diplomats Help You Fulfill Your Leadership Potential?
There are some qualities of a good leader that you can adopt by simply making a small effort. However, there are some things that require extensive training. You have the option of spending thousands of dollars on extensive workshops and training. These not only waste your time, but also prove quite redundant in the end.
At Best Diplomats, we have finally cracked the code for what works and what does not work for leaders today. Through our short training programs and conferences, we are able to hone the skills of future leaders. From helping you discover your potential to helping you form lifelong connections with a diverse group of people, Best Diplomats can be the missing piece in your life puzzle. So come join us today and revolutionize your career within weeks.
Leadership is not easy, and it is not for the faint-hearted. It brings with it many challenges and hurdles. However, by making a small effort and honing your skills, you can tackle these problems instinctively. The trick is to prepare for them pre-emptively, so you do not have to face a crisis that you can not get out off.
By improving your personality and adopting these 25 qualities of a good leader, you will become a complete package, and you will never disappoint yourself or the people who put their faith in you. And isn’t that the dream of every leader?
What Makes a Bad Leader?
People cannot be categorized into good or bad. However, they can be categorized into good and bad leaders. Bad leaders are individuals who show inconsistency in their leadership characteristics and lack effective communication skills. Moreover, bad leaders are non-inclusive and are discriminatory towards their employees.
How Can You Identify a Weak Leader?
Whether you are assessing yourself or someone else, there has to be a metric on which you can make your assessment. Here are some signs of weak leadership.
1) Makes selfish decisions that go against the best interest of everyone.
2) Is too self-involved and is unable to take criticisms.
3) Is resistant to change and is not flexible in their decisions.
4) Does not act according to their core values.
5) Cannot inspire and motivate others to do better.
What Leaders Should Stop Doing?
If you want to be an exemplary leader, there are a couple of things you need to stop doing on immediate bases. Here are some things you should avoid.
1) Believe that you are knowledgeable of all things.
2) Neglect outside coaching and assistance.
3) Look to blame others for your mistakes.
4) Care about self growth at the cost of growth of company.
5) Avoid giving credit where it is due.