Leadership is many things to many people and is a complex subject, however in business, what really matters ? What we do know is a business cannot and will not be successful without good leadership and executives will not reach their full potential without being a good leader.
From 35 years experience in business heading an industry leading management team, the following are my top 10 most important attributes and or skills in leadership today.
This list has been prepared from my own experience in business together with credible research.
The ability to understand leadership and identify leadership qualities isn’t about being in leadership training, however, it can help us in many ways such as:
- Employing the right people
- Our own personal development
- Client assessment.
- Identifying future leaders
These attributes are to promote thought, discussion and even self-evaluation.
- Business Purpose: Having a real and enduring purpose is an incredibly powerful attribute, it is about what your business does and why you do it, this is what guides and motivates.
Q: Do you have a real and enduring purpose for you and your business?
- Vision: Is about being able to see the future, what is the business going to look like some time in the future when your purpose has been achieved?
Q: Do you have a clear vision for the future of your business?
- Passion: It is almost impossible to achieve results in business without being incredibly passionate about your business purpose, your people, your customers, and doing it better than anybody else.“A great leader’s courage to fulfill his vision comes from passion, not position” John C. Maxwell
Q: Are you still passionate about what you do and why you do it ?
- Attitude: If you believe you can – you can! Your attitude is a choice; it is what delivers your actions. Your people are a mirror of your attitude and maintaining a good attitude is easier than regaining one.“Its your attitude, not your aptitude that will determine your altitude “ Zig Zigler
Q: Do you have a positive attitude towards your business and the future ?
- Focus: Have an arrow like focus towards the achievement of your purpose. The sharper it is, the sharper you are. The keys are priorities, concentration and an ability to say no.
Q: Do you have a clear focus on your business purpose or are you easily distracted?
- Core Values: Leaders have very clear core values and ensure they are embedded in the organization to create a lasting culture.
Q: Do you have a lasting culture with clearly identifiable core values?
- Teach Ability: To keep reading, to keep learning and never being afraid to ask for help.
“It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts.” John Wooden – Basketball Hall of Fame
Q: Do you continue to learn and seek help from others?
- Effect change: You must be able to identify the need for change, how much, when and how to make it happen.
“In today's world there are two types of companies, those that change and those that disappear” Anonymous.
Q: How successful are you at implementing change in your business?
- Achieve results: Leaders are never known for how hard they work, they are known for what they achieved. They have an ability to make things happen, get results and don’t make excuses.
Q: Do you regularly achieve your goals and objectives ?
- Character: It is about how you act, often termed the “characteristics of good leaders”. They listen before they speak, ensure the vision is communicated, inspire others to follow, employ the right people, lead by example, are visible, earn respect and trust, have meaningful discussions, make hard decisions, respect others, have energy, ask the difficult questions and most importantly are highly self motivated.
Q: Do you regularly display the characteristics of a good leader?
My top 10 attributes on leadership are very much dominated by how you act and how you manage people, which is very true when you observe great leaders, they act like great leaders. If you can’t act like a leader, it is impossible to be one. Yes skills are very important, however this is a separate subject and a lot easier to work on if a leader has the right attributes.
I hope you found this article thought provoking. Understanding leadership is a skill which can be used in many ways. This is one of the few topics in business that will never be resolved without continual evolution in thinking.
What are your thoughts on the subject? Are there elements more important than the ones listed? How would you rate your own leadership attributes?
Have a think and continue the conversation however if you would like to receive a copy of our white paper on the subject with associated leadership self audit, please email at the address below .
It must be remembered that we must continually better manage and develop ourselves if we are to manage and develop others successfully .
Feedback is always welcome, please send suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org