Anyone can climb the corporate ladder. But just because someone happens to be at the top of any organization’s pecking order doesn’t mean that person is necessary a good leader.
While good leaders inspire their team to achieve greatness, bad leaders are demotivating and discouraging. Companies that are led by the former group continue to grow while those led by the latter group are simply unable to reach their full potential.
So what makes a good leader, anyway? Here are the six most inspiring leadership qualities:
Good leaders have high emotional intelligence (EQ). This means that they’re not only very in tune with their own emotions, they’re also plugged into the emotions of those around them. As a result, they’re able to make decisions without being influenced by the way they feel. They also are able to put themselves in their employees’ shoes, understanding how those folks might respond to certain decisions.
The end result? Better decisions — ones employees agree with — are made.
Good leaders are honest and transparent. They tell it like it is — always. Sure, they might not be able to provide the full scoop on everything that’s going on at any given point in time (there are times when certain information might have to be withheld), but in any case, they don’t blindside their staff with bad news at the last minute. Employees listen to honest leaders, as honesty commands respect.
Good leaders are compassionate. If one of their employees is absolutely drowning in work, they don’t go about adding more assignments onto their pile. Instead, they get creative. Maybe they’ll find another team member who’s able to lend a hand. Maybe they’ll even lend a hand themselves. Whatever the case may be, they understand that the going can get tough every now and again. They do whatever they can to make things better — not worse.
Good leaders lead by example. Anyone who’s ever worked for a less than hardworking boss knows how uninspiring such leaders can be. How can you honestly expect your team to bust their tails for you on a daily basis if you’re not pouring yourself into your own job? Good leaders are the hardest working individuals of the bunch. Their dedication rubs off on their employees, who then strive to work as hard as they possibly can too.
Good leaders are able to make decisions quickly whenever it’s warranted. They understand that the buck stops at their desk. When you’re on the top, people look to you for a path forward. Good leaders understand that there are times when they simply can’t afford to take forever to make a decision — so they act accordingly.
Good leaders understand that things evolve, and processes and workflows need to correspondingly change to keep up with that evolution. If all of their employees are actively dreading certain new initiatives, good leaders respond to those feelings and rethink their approach. Good leaders don’t oppose changing paths because they know adaptability is a critical component of growth.
If you feel as though you’re not as strong in a particular area, don’t let it bring you down. You’re in control of how you act, after all. Work on the areas your weakest in, and make a conscious effort to do better — and you will.
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