Great leaders aren’t born, but they sure strove hard to get where they are now. You see, excellent leadership skills are not innate to a person. It takes effort, time, courage, and will to become a good leader in any organization you are aiming for. Fortunately, it’s not rocket science to be the great leader you always wanted to be.
When you know what makes a good leader, you are a step closer to becoming the ideal boss that your team members look up to. And we’re going to help you achieve that through this list of qualities that make a good leader.
1. A visionary of the team
A good leader knows where the team is headed. Without knowing the right direction, a leader cannot guide his/her members in achieving a common goal. It’s like leading without light because the leader has no vision for the future. A great team leader thinks ahead and identifies the right route to take in ensuring goal attainment.
2. Passion and commitment
When a team leader displays genuine interest and enthusiasm for his/her work, it’s easier to gain trust from team members. Not only this show you are invested in achieving success, but also your dedication to make the processes work, which includes the right supervision of your team. Your burning passion for your work can be passed on to your members when they realize how important it is to commit themselves to materialize the team’s goals.
3. Effective communication
Clear communication across a team is the key to success—whatever goal you may have set. First of all, communication lets the team understand the mission, goals, and vision. Second, it opens up opportunities for feedback, which helps identify things to improve. Lastly, it paves the way for a better leadership as having excellent communication skills translates to being good at establishing information and listening from others’ perspectives.
When things get rough, a leader cannot afford to carry the uneasiness. This will cause the whole team to feel the weight of the circumstance. Instead, a good leader uses this scenario to uplift the members and remind them that they can conquer all challenges they are facing. However, you should not misunderstand confidence with arrogance. There is a big difference between knowing you are capable of doing things and rubbing off to others’ faces that you are good.
A good leader knows that the team cannot function without the collective help of everyone. As a leader, you should be able to delegate tasks to the rightful member who can deliver. When you ask support from your members, you demonstrate your trust and confidence in their capabilities. This then results in a boost in their morale as a team performer.
6. Integrity and honesty
These two qualities work hand in hand in achieving the success of a team. When you display openness and transparency over your work, you inspire your members to do the same as it promotes healthy relationships. On the other hand, having integrity means sticking to the core values that display diligence. When these two are combined, you exude a great leadership that pushes for good work ethics.
A good leader knows the importance of motivation. When team members feel down, a leader can easily sense it. And the best thing that leaders must do is to motivate members not just in time of need, but also in times of triumphs. Being a consistent source of motivation is enough to make them strive harder and complete their tasks more efficiently.
Empathy goes a long way in leadership. When you can put yourself in other people’s shoes, it is way easier to understand what they are going through. And you, as a leader, should always be on the lookout for the welfare of your team members. The best leaders know that they are responsible for helping their team members conquer temporary roadblocks and help them ease their way out of it, instead of blaming them at their faults.
There’s nothing more inspiring for team members when they see their leader being 100% committed to the job. This doesn’t only make you a good example, but seeing you get down to business motivates your members to do just the same or even more. When you show your commitment, you gain respect as the leader. On top of everything, you share to the team the drive to accomplish your tasks.
10. Positive attitude
Optimism brings in a massive chunk of hope, light, and motivation, which all contribute to the efficiency of the members. Exuding a positive attitude is a much better approach to take on leadership. Imagine being reproachful and gloomy to the team—that will demotivate your team and cause them to lose the drive to work. That said, imbibe optimism at all times as this helps the whole team to take on things inspired.
11. Reception to feedback
A leader understands that open communication is the key to the harmonious relationship of the team. A good leader can acknowledge criticisms and feedback because these are just constructive suggestions. Without the lending ears that a good leader should have, an organization cannot succeed when its leader is focused on his own agenda.
Every leader knows the weight of his responsibilities as the head of a team. Good leaders understand that they are accountable for everyone’s performance. When things are going well, they know how to praise. On the other hand, when issues occur, a leader should be ready to find solutions to help them get back on track quickly.
13. Recognition for others’ work
Any affirmation instantly boosts a team member’s morale. Recognizing individual efforts and success is one way to build confidence and motivate them to do more. And the best way to acknowledge their efforts is through a reward system that shows appreciation for their outputs. Happy team members perform better when they feel appreciated in their team.
14. Thirst for learning
A good leader does not settle for things he/she already knows. Being stagnant is not a choice; instead, it should be the driving force in striving to learn more. This way, you are expanding your horizon as a leader while opening yourself to more opportunities for improvement.
15. Conflict resolution
Conflicts are inevitable to every team. These can be detrimental to the business operation when left unkempt. Thus, a manager must be capable of resolving conflict peacefully and logically. It is one of the leadership strengths that will keep the harmony in and out of the business organization. To help you hone your conflict resolution skills, here’s a comprehensive course you should check out: Conflict Management in the Workplace.
16. Ability to make critical decisions
Outstanding leaders are great decision-makers. Most of the time, they face different situations that require critical decisions. As the head of the team, they are accountable for making this, and they should be able to weigh in the pros and cons right away.
It takes courage and critical thinking to formulate decisions that will benefit the team and other parties. There’ll be times you have to endure fear, uncertainty, and doubts, which you have to put up with just to drive the team in the right direction.
17. Adaptability to different leadership styles
To have more efficient business operations, managers test out different leadership styles to determine what works for the management. This implies that you have to be adaptable to various leadership approaches. You may learn more about the different leadership styles in this article.
Having the knowledge and flexibility to implement such will benefit the team in so many ways. After all, team members respond better to a particular approach than any other. And this you’ll have to find out by trying out several methods.
One of the leadership strengths of an outstanding manager is being transparent to his members. This pertains to the openness to share information with them. The visibility helps develop trust toward your leadership. And when members trust you, there is improved efficiency in their productivity.
Being transparent provides your team members clarity and autonomy, which helps them feel empowered. This results in increased engagement among your members.
A leader is a part of the team. You may act as the person with authority, but you and members have the common denominator—you are a part of a team. This implies that you must act your part and have a common goal as a team.
You need to be proactive in taking on your role as the lead, driving members to the common objectives.
Determination is a leadership strength that helps gear up the team for any situation. A leader must be able to withstand any setbacks and push forward even more. Nothing can stop a determined and resilient leader from doing great things.
This determination will resonate with the team members, inspiring them to instill the same value. This then results in a team full of empowered individuals, ready to take on their roles and achieve common goals.
Being open to innovation is a strong point of a true leader. This reception to new and innovative ideas encourages people to engage and participate. It promotes thinking outside the box, which requires creativity.
Innovative leaders teach their members about the value of broad-thinking and working beyond what’s traditional. You can expect better results when everyone implements innovative strategies in working.
22. Active listening
Outstanding leaders listen to their team members. They know that their authority isn’t an excuse to act above others. Listening to members nurtures the working relationship. Team members feel empowered when leaders show sincerity and acknowledgment over their ideas. It demonstrates respect when you listen to what they have to say.
Leaders who actively listen to members have better empathy. They understand their perspectives, resulting in more effective management.
You cannot expect your members to have discipline when the leaders themselves don’t practice it. Having the discipline encourages others to follow your lead. After all, leaders set by example. You can’t preach what you can’t practice.
Being disciplined pushes you to take on your role, guide members, and be more motivated in achieving team goals.
24. Genuine care for others
Good leaders aren’t all about work, work, and work. They highly acknowledge the importance of finding the balance between work and life. Thus, they allow members to prioritize personal wellbeing as these have a significant impact on their productivity.
The best leaders know how to recognize employee’s hard work and motivate them intrinsically and extrinsically. After all, rewards are effective in encouraging them.
Being a leader doesn’t entitle you to the respect from your members. Respect is not something you demand—you earn it. Leadership doesn’t necessarily imply that you hold influence over others. These two are interchangeable.
Here are some ways that can increase your influence in leading a team:
- Communicate what you want.
- Connect with people.
- Give importance to others.
- Show vulnerability.
- Build lasting relationships.
- Be open to feedback and suggestions.
- Act professionally—in person and on social media.
- Instill self-awareness.
Now that you know the qualities that make a leader great, do not forget that these should be combined with your will to serve as the visionary of the team. Have the heart that’s open in nurturing other’s skills. Because at the end of the day, the leader is not just an instrument in materializing company goals, but also the guide that puts his team in the right direction to better themselves. If you want more tips and guidelines in mastering your leadership skills, here’s a leadership masterclass you should take in your journey to becoming a better leader.
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