Archive for June 15th, 2012

Characteristics of good leader June 15th, 2012

Vinod Kumar

When I wrote the post around – “I am not a Manager, I am a Leader” I got some great inputs from my friends and there were more questions. These were around what defines a successful leader and what are the qualities on a good leader. In this blog post, let me take a different set of list that defines qualities of a good leader. I know the performance review cycles are over for many companies and hence this list will be interesting share :).

Leadership is the art of getting someone else to do something you want done because he wants to do it – Dwight Eisenhower

Words that define Leadership

These are not exhaustive list got from encyclopedia but are some words that typically get defined in my opinion (in no particular order) –

  • passion
  • humility
  • courage
  • discipline
  • risk-taking
  • vision
  • commitment
  • compassion
  • big dreams
  • faith-filled
  • tenacity
  • authenticity
  • faith
  • grace
  • perseverance
  • sacrifice
  • clarity of purpose
  • empowerment
  • forward thinking
  • humor
  • followers
  • service
  • patience
  • understanding team’s strengths
  • partnership
  • dedication
  • wisdom
  • strategic thinking
  • ability to forgive
  • ability to grow

Go as far as you can see; when you get there, you’ll be able to see farther – J. P. Morgan

Though my other post talks at length what I look specifically as differences with manager. Here are some more dope what I felt are critical for any leader.

  1. Sharing with the organization – One of the critical trait I feel is the ability to share with the masses and not leave things to speculation. There needs to be clarity of purpose delivered with clarity of thoughts via effective communication.
  2. People come first – every leader knows that the fundamental building block of any organization is their people. Recognizing people and developing the next level of leaders within by sharing is an important trait of a great leader.
  3. Create positive impact on people – Being able to influence and motivate others in making a difference in their lives is one is critical. The key to successful leadership today is influence, not authority.
  4. Know their limitations – a good leader knows their limitation and gets the right people on the job to get things done. Recognizing their limitation and finding someone is their strength.
  5. Value others Success – a hallmark of a great leader is to make people around them successful and in-return become successful in their pursuit to reach their vision / dreams.
  6. Student at heart and always helping – This is one quality I look out for in any leader. Good leaders have a heart of service, not necessarily for personal gains.
  7. Visionary – A good leader has an appetite for the question – “What’s Next”. They have a vision and a roadmap to reach there too. They are not day dreamers, but are real visionaries in their dreams to get there.

As we look ahead into the next century, leaders will be those who empower others – Bill Gates

I know the list of words are not complete. So please make sure to add your list of words that you feel are best suited for a successful leadership skill. It is one of the best ways we can learn from each other.

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