“Some people are just born leaders.” This is a popular quote; there is no doubt about that. What isn't very well known is that the quote is an absolute load of bull. Good leadership qualities are learned, and it can be argued that many of the traits that are called natural leadership skills simply are not. Instead, they are often skills that run counter to good leadership abilities such as being demanding, engaging in manipulative behavior, and getting one's own way at any cost.
Does the idea of becoming a leader appeal to you? Do you believe you have the personal traits required to be a good leader, or do you feel as if you are lacking in some areas? Performing that sort of personal analysis can be difficult, especially if you are completely honest with yourself. However, if you aren't willing to take an inward look, how will you know if you have what it takes to be a great leader? Better yet, how will you know which skills you need to develop? All leaders have different styles and personality types, however underneath all of that most of them have many of the same traits. Do you have these leadership traits?
A Great Leader is Decisive
Leaders make important decisions every single day. These decisions impact the team or organization that they lead as a whole, and the individuals who belong to that team or organization. These decisions can impact the bottom line, a person's ability to take advantage of an opportunity, even the future of an entire organization. In many cases, the decisions leaders face, are quite painful to make. Some examples of these decisions would be calling for layoffs, closing branches of a store, or letting go of a well-liked employee. Ultimately, a good leader takes all points into consideration and makes the decision that is best for everybody.
Honesty is a Trait That Any Good Leader Will Have
A great leader knows that successful teams are built on a foundation of honest communication. They also know that honesty is the foundation of a great reputation in any industry. Because of this, leaders are up front and honest in every situation. This includes times when telling the truth might be painful or embarrassing. A good leader would never use dishonesty to gain an advantage or to hide a mistake or shortcoming. People who work with honest leaders feel empowered to be honest themselves, and they feel as if they can trust their leader. Many people have stated that the ability to trust the leadership around them is extremely important.
There Are no Great Leaders Who Are Not Naturally Curious
Curiosity is the desire to learn more about the world around you. This is a trait that all leaders possess. Curiosity is the force behind a leader's desire to learn everything they can about the people who work with them and the people who purchase their products and services. Curiosity is also the driving factor behind the desire to figure out how things work, and ultimate to figure out ways in which they can make things work better. A good leader is always asking his or herself what if questions. These questions often lead to the kind of innovative ideas that help leaders get ahead.
A Good Leader Has The Ability to Communicate Clearly And Concisely
A good leader never deals in ambiguity. Instead, the speak directly and they say exactly what they mean. It is rare for a good leader to give instructions that are not very clear. They know that unclear instructions can result in both confusion and error. Some people do not communicate clearly because they do not wish to be held to the things that they say. Others simply do not realize they are being unclear. If a leader notices any sort of issue with his or her ability to communicate clearly, they take steps to fix that problem. A trait of a great communicator is the ability to effectively communicate in writing or electronically.
Good Leaders Exemplify a Strong Work Ethic
Nobody respects a leader who gives out orders while sitting comfortably in their corner office. A well-respected leader teaches team members about work ethic through example. This means that when things are hectic and late night hours are required, the great leader is their with the team getting things done. A good leader would never ask team members to put forth any effort that they were not willing to put forth. The trait of having a strong work ethic is often the difference between a boss and a leader.
A Good Leader is Personable
Good leaders care about others. They are easy to speak to, and they are easy to spend time with. Because they are personable, good leaders put others around them at ease. This trait is a huge benefit when dealing with both team members and customers.