A great leader can change the world. What would Apple be without Steve Jobs? Facebook without Zuckerberg? Amazon without Jeff Bezos? These leaders created mammoth institutions that have changed the fabric of society.
A large part of the success of a company comes down to its leader. Great leaders live up to their greatest potential, and encourage others to do the same. Author Simon Sinek says, “People don’t buy what you do. People buy why you do it.” A great leader can encourage people to buy into whatever they are selling. But what are the qualities that make a great leader?
Here are 5 essential qualities every great leader has:
The saying, “Honesty is the best policy” is popular for a reason. Great leaders know that being transparent is an essential part of doing business. It is imperative that leaders have a moral code that they stick to. Great leaders do the right thing, even if it’s not ideal. They give credit, and acknowledge mistakes. They put safety and quality first. Having integrity sets up trust, an essential component in relationships and business.
Effective communication skills:
Strong communication skills is required of great leaders. A great leader inspires, motivates and disciplines, three things that cannot be done without communication. The ability to effectively communicate can ease tension, resolve disputes, improve work performance and build relationships. Those lacking in communication skills can appear weak, disconnected or unapproachable. Great leaders know how to communicate, and, importantly, how to listen.
A great leader knows how to take control and make decisions. Sometimes decision making involves risk. Leaders are willing to take these risks, provided they believe the decision is the correct decision to be made. Connected to decisiveness is accountability. Great leaders make decisions knowing that they might not end well, and will be accountable if outcomes are negative.
A great leader inspires. They instill faith in their employees, creating an environment where people believe in what they are working on. A great leader empowers their employees to work autonomously, encouraging them to make decisions that are in the best interest of the company and customer.
Great leaders are likeable. They are relatable, approachable and personable. They show care for others. When a leader is likeable and approachable, it encourages others to follow their lead. Such leaders create work environments that make employees want to stay.
Can you think of any other essential qualities a great leader should have? Sound off in the comments below!