Do your employees step up and perform at the highest level?  If so, it is probably due in part to good leadership.  I’ve been writing a lot lately about corporate culture, and started thinking about whether your employees are inspired to work for you, or just have to work for you.

There are a lot of qualities associated with good leaders, like courage, decisiveness, self-control, etc., but when I think of what it takes to inspire and motivate others, I think some special qualities are really important.  Here’s my top ten:

  • Unwavering honesty – always tells the truth, wants to hear the truth, believes that truth works
  • Transparency – this is a companion of honesty – telling people all they need and want to know
  • Justice and fairness applied across the board (no double standard)
  • Compassion – genuinely cares about others (empathy fits in with this too)
  • Lead by example – set a high standard, and be willing to do what you want others to do
  • Collaboration – encouraging others to contribute to your success
  • Vision (and can articulate a compelling course of action to others)
  • Enthusiasm – be the champion and head cheerleader for whatever you advocate
  • Empowerment – let others own what they do (and no micromanaging!)
  • Embrace Change – be open and flexible and take suggestions seriously

If your favorite is missing from this list – please add a comment so we can all learn!

Tags: inspiration, leader, leadership, qualities of leaders


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Views: 645

Comment by David Kimmelman on June 2, 2011 at 8:50am

Mark, Other qualities or characteristics that I believe are critically important are as follows:

  • Consistency- In behavior and messaging
  • Listening- Great listening skills are essential for a great leader
  • Intuitive/Insightful- A leader that can read between the lines of what is being said and what the subtext is of what's being said is a great trait. Kind of goes with listening skills.

Good question Mark. I worry about the next generation of leaders and their communication skills and hope they can find strong mentors.

Comment by Mark Bregman on June 2, 2011 at 12:25pm
I agree completely that these 3 are very important traits.  I'm sure the collective wisdom on this site could come up with 50 - it is so hard to narrow it down sometimes.


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