A ship sinks if a qualified captain does not call the shots. Throughout history, whether in sports, revolutions or businesses, a good leader makes all the difference. Take the example of international football; certain teams only achieve their full potential due to iconic captains like Diego Maradona and Franz Beckenbauer. In the corporate world, only a skilled leader can lead the way regardless of whether it’s a project for a giant organization or a four-man startup team. The truth is everyone is not a born leader. Certain qualities if identified and nurtured can mould the leader in you.
Qualities Of A Good Leader
Great communicators make great leaders as has been proved by history. Most successful political leaders have been excellent orators. Capable leaders show followers a logical plan, map out a world vision and the ability to rationalize. A successful leader knows how to use pathos and rationality to reach out to people. Harvard management professor, Nitin Nohria, asserts effective leaders effectively use Aristotle’s three classical elements of rhetoric.
Precision is a leader’s asset. A great leader should be articulate using simple words to make a point. A leader must also be an excellent listener because it shows an ability to appreciate the time and energy of a team member. Joe Badaracco feels a leader is a master in the art of distillation, making a complex topic simple and clear.
Telling It As It Is
Winston Churchill, one of the greatest leaders in history, admitted his Gallipoli campaign was an absolute disaster. He exemplifies a good leader who is pragmatic and accepts responsibility for his actions. People tire of pretentious leaders who evade the truth and do not acknowledge setbacks. Such leaders are unable to transform disadvantages into opportunities. Amazon CEO, Jeff Bezos, is emphatic the greatest struggle for a leader is whether or not to say something harsh.
A leader has to articulate hard truths without mincing words, be able to judge situations and people, to resolve misunderstandings inside a team and motivate the team during a crisis. Another important quality is an ability to communicate and point out facts without being condescending or disapproving.
For you to be an effective leader, your team has to have faith in your ability to navigate all situations without any sign of panic. A true leader will always lead the team to safe shores.