There are numerous studies showcasing the importance of a leader when it comes to measuring the effectiveness of an organisation. That is to say, in the position of a leader, you have an impactful role not only in the successful outcome of the organisation but also in influencing the people you work with. On that account, what are some essential leadership qualities one should have in this position?
Truth be told, leadership comes with numerous challenges and rewards. Although this may seem like a contradiction in terms, being a leader provides the opportunity of having a big influence and playing an important role. On the other hand, one’s involvement as a leader can make the distinction between success and failure.
With that in mind, let’s focus on the top leadership qualities one should have in the position of a leader.
We hear a lot about motivation these days. Of course, it is important to be self-motivated regardless of the position you have in an organisation or firm. Still, when you are a leader, self-motivation is even more important. Leadership comes with many challenges and difficulties, and without self-motivation, you might get stuck at some point. You might also get discouraged in the face of difficulties if you lack the power to motivate yourself.
We also think that empathy is another important quality any leader should possess. When you have an empathic approach and perception, the other people around you are more likely to collaborate with you and do that with an open mind and a positive attitude. When you have an empathic relationship with the people you work with, you can make a closer connection with them. Empathy means trying to understand the problems your employees go through – you try to put yourself in their position and act proactively afterwards.
3. Good Communicator
Getting specific results can be difficult, if not impossible without good communication skills. In fact, accomplishing specific purposes is always challenging, but when the communication between the leader and the employees is deficient, then the likelihood of success is notably diminished. In addition to that, words are more powerful than you might think, as they can motivate people and propel them forward – when used correctly!
When it comes to leadership qualities, accountability is high on our list. Without a doubt, this quality is paramount, as most leaders expect accountability from their employees, partners, so on and so forth. If you approach accountability the right way, you can actually promote confidence and inspire your employees in this view.
Why is it so important to be an optimist as a leader? Your attitude can really make the world of a difference in the outcome of a project. When you have a negative approach, you also have the tendency to communicate with a negative tone, which can have detrimental consequences. On the other hand, positivity and optimism are contagious. Concurrently, when you approach a challenging situation with a positive, optimist mind, the chance of solving it efficiently is much higher.
When discussing leadership qualities, it’s mandatory to include passion – which is somehow connected with motivation. Simply put, when you’re passionate about something, it becomes much easier to work for that goal. Concurrently, through passion, you are willing to give what it takes to make things work. And this can be very inspiring for your subordinates and co-workers.
Integrity is another piece of the puzzle that shouldn’t be missing. This is an important leadership quality for a leader in a company, in an organisation, in a team, a sports team – you get the picture. When you showcase integrity and you embrace behaviour that indicates you have specific values and beliefs, you display a positive example that is worth following.
The effectiveness of leadership is imminently associated with confidence. When you are unsure regarding your decisions or your capabilities as a leader or professional in your domain, then the odds are that your subordinates will doubt you. This will make it difficult for them to respect you and your decisions. That isn’t to say you should be overconfident, as this will communicate the wrong message as well.
Did it ever occur to you that a leader should have a sense of humour? It seems that funny leaders are actually better leaders. Why is that? What is the connection between the two? Basically, humour is a valuable tool that enables you to engage with your co-workers and subordinates on a more personal level, thus building a deeper bond. Humour also diminishes the pressure and stress associated with work – laughing releases oxytocin, which promotes social bonding and increases trust.
Usually, when it comes to loyalty, most people attribute this quality to employees. However, they overlook the fact that this is one of the most important leadership qualities one should possess. In essence, loyalty is a two-way street. If you aren’t willing to stay loyal to your workers, how do you expect them to do this for you? It’s as simple as that.
A disciplined leader is a person that has a high level of self-control, which is crucial when it comes to attaining great success. This applies not only in the business world but also on a personal level. Discipline is also linked with accomplishing inner calm, which is just as important when you are a leader and you have to display a positive example for others.
Many people mistake maturity for old age – but this is not accurate. That is to say, there are many old people who lack maturity, meaning that age is no guarantee in this respect. There are younger men out there who are more mature and more put-together than their older co-workers. And that’s because they have dealt with difficult situations and they did that successfully, with a positive outcome. And this is usually where maturity gets to shine – when you are faced with challenges and you need to act proactively as fast as possible.
13. Managerial Competence
There are numerous organisations and businesses out there that want to create leaders out of people that are merely competent at what they do. And while this may work in some scenarios, it is not a fail-proof strategy. That’s because managerial competence is one of the most significant leadership qualities, which many times may be overlooked. It is about understanding the goals and processes in a company or organisation and knowing how to act based on these.
It’s also worth noting that most people are more inclined to follow a leader if they like that person. It’s just the way it works – which is what makes charisma an important trait for a leader. Charisma is also connected with approachability, a friendly and positive attitude, among other things.
Why should a leader be humble? Or better said, how can a leader be humble since we’ve pointed out that a leader should be confident? Isn’t this a contradiction? Not so much since confidence isn’t synonymous with pride. On the other hand, humility is an important trait as it means you are real, and this also makes your connection and relationship with your subordinates real. That is to say, humility means that you are concerned with each member of the team, not only with yourself and with your responsibilities. This makes you more relatable to others.
A leader’s capabilities will be tested in difficult, challenging times, not only in good times. When things get hard, that is when your capabilities are tested. That is to say, instead of concentrating on the problem and the challenge, you should focus on a solution that will make things better. Essentially, resilience is a key quality that comes with time and experience in leadership.
And finally, cooperation is another essential trait that each leader should possess. Even the most capable person cannot accomplish everything on his/her own. You need people to reach your goals you need to depend on your team in order to generate success in an organisation. And you have to acknowledge this as a leader. That is to say, a leader should always be willing to cooperate and to showcase his/her interest in cooperating with people.
To sum up, while leadership is a rewarding mission, it is also challenging. This means that you require a range of key leadership qualities – and we have mentioned some of them above. Becoming a great leader implies working hard as there is a long road ahead of you – but the rewards are even greater.