Good leaders are generally pretty easy to recognize. We are naturally drawn to them. And while their individual styles may be different, quality leaders all incorporate the same basic tenets of stewardship over their areas of influence. So, who can be an effective leader? The answer is ... anyone. Anyone who puts forth the genuine effort to hone the skills necessary to encourage others to model your example. The following are 10 qualities every good leader should possess.
1. Honesty and integrity. Priority one.
2. Consistency. It’s easier for people to follow if they know where they’re going.
3. Remaining (or at least appearing) calm under pressure. This helps to instill confidence in others and increases the ability to handle tough situations.
4. Ability and willingness to delegate. This helps to build trust and enables your direct reports or peers to grow by taking on more responsibility.
5. Clear communication. People need to understand situations, instructions, and expectations to be able to respond accordingly, appropriately, and effectively.
6. Accountability. Take responsibility. Own your mistakes. We all make them. It’s how we deal with them that counts.
7. Decision-making capability. Gather the necessary information, involve others if necessary, and make the decision. Don’t rush judgment, but decisions should be made in a timely manner
8. Enthusiasm. Show a genuine liking for what it is that you do.
9. Sincerity. Be real in what you do.
10. Empathy. Be able to see things from others’ perspectives.
Remember that leaders are always learning and evolving. But if you start with this framework of conduct, you'll be off to a great start on your leadership journey.