Have you ever wondered why some leaders are loved and revered and why others are just tolerated because of their position? What makes certain leaders great where people seek them out and are willing to follow them anywhere? After studying a variety of leaders for over two decades, I have found there are common trends among the most respected leaders in the world. Below outlines the Top-10 traits for being a successful and highly regarded leader:
- Leaders Know Everyone’s Name
From the janitor to the C-Suite, leaders genuinely care about every person in the organization. They know people’s name and a few personal things about them, which makes them feel valued.
- Leaders Value Everyone’s Opinion
Leaders solicit input from everyone on the team, make informed decisions, take necessary actions, follow up, and hold everyone accountable, including themselves.
- Leaders Motivate and Push People Out of Their Comfort Zone
Leaders see the true potential in people, look for ways to develop them into being their best, and allow them to maximize their gifts in the world.
- Leaders Create a Safe Work Environment
Leaders listen to the team members and build trust by helping them work through conflict, being vulnerable, and empowering them to solve problems without judgement.
- Leaders Don’t Pretend to Know It All
Leaders are not experts at everything, but they surround themselves with people who are. Leaders are experts at building a team consisting of the right types of people with the right skillsets and areas of expertise and maximizing their strengths while working together in a harmonious manner.
- Leaders Don’t Tolerate Drama
Leaders take proactive action to prevent toxic behavior from infecting the team and empower all members to do the same. When that happens, the TEAM ends up doing a great job of protecting the positive culture created.
- Leaders Ask Great Questions
Leaders calmly ask questions that ignite an empathetic response and get to the “root level” issues. Even if they may already know the answers to the questions, leaders will continue to ask, not for their own benefit, but as a way for others to think differently, be more engaged, and discover new solutions in the process.
- Leaders Give People the Credit They Deserve
Leaders don’t do the work, employees do. Leaders make time to celebrate the success of the team and give all the credit to them. Always praise in public because no one wins alone. It takes an entire team to thrive. Every member should get credit.
- Leaders Do the Right Thing … ALWAYS
Leaders treat everyone with respect, dignity, and compassion. They develop trust through sincere action, which signals “I have your back” to the team. Leaders know not every decision will be popular but will do what is right for the organization’s overall best interest. When people KNOW how much a leader really cares about them, they will respect the leader and the decisions made, even if they don’t agree.
- Leaders Set the Example
Being a leader means living your life in a fishbowl where you are always “on stage” where people see everything. People will listen to everything you say, watch everything you do, talk about you to others, and model your behavior. Be intentional about what you wear, how you conduct yourself, where you spend your time, who you hang out with, and how you deal with various situations. Live a life of balance. Show people with your actions how to be successful. It’s a leader’s job to grow the next generation of leaders. When others succeed due to your investment, you will always be a leader everyone wants to follow.
Leadership is an art, not a science. It takes years to truly become a great leader … leader of leaders. If you incorporate these 10 qualities into your life and practice these principles on a daily basis, you to will become the type of leader that can make a powerful impact on others and the world we live in. I leave you with the following questions:
- Where are you in your leadership journey?
- Are you where you want to be?
- How do you know if you are an effective leader or not?
- What needs to happen next for you to grow your leadership skills to the next level?
Need some help answering the above questions, click here to access our RESOURCES page. Under assessments, click on the FREE leadership/management skills assessment to download. Take the assessment and calculate your score. This tool will help you gain a better understanding of your ability to lead and manage.
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