What Makes Up A Leader? Part 2 - ETCSINES

What Makes Up A Leader? Part 2 - ETCSINES

This is a sequel to the post earlier today. ( What Makes Up A Leader? Part 1 - Etcsines )

A good leader has a futuristic vision and knows how to turn his ideas into real-world success stories. In this article, we take a look at some of the important leadership qualities and ultimately separate good leaders from a bad one.

1. Honesty and Integrity:
The 34th President of United States, Dwight.D.Eisenhower once said, “The supreme quality of leadership is unquestionably integrity. Without it, no realsuccess is possible, no matter whether it is on a section gang, a footballfield, in an army,or in an office.” Honesty and integrity are two important ingredients which make a good leader.

2. Confidence:
To be an effective leader,you should be confident enough to ensure that other follow your commands. If you are unsure about your own decisions and qualities, then your
subordinates will never follow you. As a leader,you have to be oozing with confidence, show some swagger and assertiveness to gain the respect of your subordinates.

3. Inspire Others:
Probably the most difficult job for a leader is to persuade others to follow. It can only be possible if you inspire your followers by setting a good example.When the going gets tough, they look up to you and see how you react to the situation. If you handle it well, they will follow you. As a leader,should think positive and this positive approach should be visible through your actions. Stay calm under pressure and keep the motivation level up. As John Quincy Adams puts it, “If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.” 

4. Commitment and Passion:
Your teams looks up to you and if you want them to give them their all, you will have to be passionate about it too. When your teammates see you getting your hands dirty, they will also give their best shot. It will also help you to gain the respect of your subordinates and infuse new energy in your team members,which helps them to perform better.

5. Good Communicator:
Good Communicator - Until you clearly communicate your vision to your team and tell them the strategy to achieve the goal, it will be very difficult for you to get the results you want. Simply put, if you are unable to communicate your message effectively to your team, you
can never be a good leader. Words have the power to motivate people and make them do the unthinkable. If you use them effectively, you can also achieve better results.

6. Decision-Making Capabilities:
Apart from having a futuristic vision, a leader should have the ability to take the right decision at the right time.Decisions taken by leaders have a profound impact on masses.A leader should think long and hard before taking a decision but once the decision is taken, stand by it. Although, most leaders take decisions on their own, but it is highly recommended that you consult key stakeholders before taking a decision.

7. Accountability:
When it comes to accountability, you need to follow the approach highlighted by Arnold. H. Glasow when he said, “Agood leader takes little more than his share of the blame and little less than his share of the credit.” Make sure that everyone of your subordinates is accountable of what they are doing. If they do well, give them a pat on the back but if they struggle,make them realize their mistakes and work together to improve.

8. Delegation and Empowerment:
It is important for a leader to focus on key responsibilities while leaving the rest to others. By that, I mean empowering your followers and delegating tasks to them. If you continue to micromanage your subordinates,it will develop a lack of trust and more importantly, you will not be able to focus on important matters, as you should be.

9. Creativity and Innovation:
What separates a leader from a follower? Steve Jobs, One of the greatest visionary of our time answers this question this way, “Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.” In order to get ahead in today’s fast-paced world, a leader must be creative and innovative at the same time.Creative thinking and constant innovation is what makes you and your team stand out from the crowd. Think out of the box to come up with unique ideas and turn those ideas and goals into reality.

Last but certainly not the least, is empathy. Leadersshould develop empathy with their followers. Unfortunately, most leadersfollow a dictatorial style and neglect empathy altogether. Understanding the problems of your followers and feeling their pain is the first step to become an effective leader.Even that is not enough until you work hard and provide your followers with the suitable solution to their problems.

To become a good leader,you must have all these qualities but if you lack some of these qualities, then you might struggle to make the mark in the world of leadership.You will have to set a good example for others to follow. That is where your commitment,passion, empathy, honesty and integrity come into play. Good communication skills and decision-making capabilities also play a vital role in success and failure of a leader.

I sincerely hope that I have been able to scratch the surface and give us an idea of what makes up a leader,one point I will like to emphasize is that a reader has a better chance at being a leader than any other person.The listed points is however not an exhaustive list of the attributes but a good start for a journey in leadership that Is long but sure. 

Thank you.

Writer: Tola Arawomo

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