Leadership is not just a title. Leaders can be found at all levels of every organization. Some of these leaders are without executive titles and are the silent foundations and pillars of their companies. They inspire their colleagues and empower them to get things done, they foster the future and develop upcoming leaders. They often make personal sacrifices for the greater good of their organization. In turn they are liked and respected by the people who work with them. These leaders can motivate their colleagues and staff and get them to maximize their productivity and their company’s bottom line! They regularly recognize their employees and offer coaching and mentoring along the way.
“Leadership is the art of getting someone else to do something you want done because he wants to do it.” – Dwight D. Eisenhower
So, what makes someone a truly great leader, one who stands out and also becomes a true success story by climbing to the top of the corporate ladder? Is someone born a great leader? Is it a skill one can hone? Can it be learned? What are some of the intrinsic qualities that come to mind when you think of a truly great leader?
- Strategic thinker, inspirational speaker and influencer
- Trustworthy and credible and conducts himself/herself with honesty and conviction
- Self-confident and self-aware
- Highly skilled, competent and consistent
- Intellectually curious with a high IQ and a high EQ
- Naturally motivated with boundless energy and passion
- Knows where he/she wants to go, likes to be challenged and takes the risks to get there
- Very disciplined, focused, resilient and determined to accomplish goals
- Leads the way by having a plan and clear objectives
- Has a compelling vision of the future and knows how to communicate it masterfully
- Builds strategic relations within the organization, industry and global community at large
- Excellent negotiator who unites diverse groups of people
- Elevates people by creating a positive work environment devoid of hostility, full of support and respect
- Great communicator who speaks with clarity, but also looks and listens
- Life-long learner whose personal goal is self-mastery
- Understands problems and potential threats and comes up with viable solutions quickly
- Change enabler with foresight to initiate change and the insight to get others to accept and manage the change
- Fails better each time and learns from each failure until he/she succeeds
- Works hard but smart, keeps current and acquires a deep understanding of the organization’s product or service. Highly skilled and develops a deep insight of the industry.
- Flexible, adaptable and ready to try new approaches of doing work; keeps up with emerging technologies and business transformation for continued business success
- Draws upon the best available talent, teaches them everything by sharing knowledge, empowering, encouraging and guiding them along and by stepping back and letting them get the work done
- Exercises power as needed and takes charge of things. Takes responsibility and admits to mistakes
- Makes decisions for the best interest of the organization. Acts quickly and efficiently by making well-informed yet difficult decisions to resolve issues
- Has a personal brand and can be recognized by that brand
This long list of traits may seem daunting for someone aspiring to be a future leader but for someone who chooses the leadership path should know that there is no magic formula and to follow the path to greatness one should start here and now!
“Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.” – Peter F. Drucker
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