Last week someone asked me what the five most important qualities of a leader are. So here is what I think:
- Vision, an idea of where he/ she is going. If they don’t know where they are going how do they expect anyone to follow them?
- Communication, the leader needs to communicate the vision, to explain why. A leader doesn’t just tell you where to go, he/she has to paint the passionate picture of the vision and then take you there (could be called people skills).
- Awareness. Self awareness, being aware of their impact on others around you as people judge behaviour not intent; and awareness of the skills and abilities of those around you. Linked with communication skills as if you don’t communicate your vision then people can only judge you on actions which may be misconstrued.
- Decisiveness, people want a clear decision. They want you to listen to their points of view but ultimately that want to have confidence that you make the ‘right’ decision in a timely fashion. They want good judgement.
Innovation, people want you to be creative and to come up with ways of pushing the organisation forward. That doesn’t mean the leader always has to be the idea man, but they have to be able to spot the potential in ideas and create a culture to nourish and support them.
Of course I could have also included other traits like:
- credit giving