What makes a great leader?

Everyone has their own thoughts and feelings on what makes a great leader. Often, we find that leadership can be a difficult thing to describe and understand but there are often common qualities that we can recognise in leaders we admire or have had the pleasure of working with.

Being a great leader does not mean you have demonstrate all these qualities, however making small yet incremental improvements in certain areas can make a big difference. Over time these can turn into behaviours and habits which impact on your own leadership qualities. So, what are some of the common qualities of great leaders? Here are just a few to get you started…

Courage people need leaders who have the courage to make the difficult decisions and the ability to say no when it might be difficult to do so. A leader who will stay the course, follow the right path even in tough times. People are far more likely to show courage if they see their leader demonstrating it.

Communication isarguably one of the most important leadership qualities. Being able to forge a connection through communications which is real and personal and being able to adapt your communications style to suit the different needs of an audience is truly inspiring.

Generosity leaders don’t take all the credit! They are quick to celebrate other’s successes and offer enthusiastic praise when it is due. They want their people to be successful and achieve their best. It is not all about them!

Humility being able to say they don’t know something, getting their hands dirty and jumping on the tools when the need arises, is the skill of a great leader. They don’t let their position of authority make them feel that they are better than anyone else.  

Self-awareness great leaders have a clear view of their strengths and weaknesses and aren’t afraid to own them. They know where their zone of genius is and have effective strategies to compensate for their weaknesses.

Approachability great leaders are hungry for different viewpoints and opinions, they welcome feedback and challenge. An environment where people are afraid to speak up, offer insight and ask questions leads to a culture of fear and over time this reduces innovation and stifles growth.

Accountability leaders know that it is important to hold themselves and others to account to achieve results. They set targets, they measure results, and they communicate what needs to be done. This builds strength, understanding and a committed team.

Our leadership development programme is accredited for Continuous Professional Development. We help leaders improve their abilities in the above areas, and many more. If you are looking for any support with your leadership skills, or those of your team, get in touch. We would love to help.

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