The 7 Qualities of an Effective Leader

August 15, 2013

leadershipIf you were to sit down and analyze effective leaders, you would find certain qualities that they each have and use effectively to be the person in charge that they are. Let’s take a look at what those qualities are . . . .

1. Passion

An effective leader, whether it is in sports, the military, religion or business, is someone who has a passion for their cause. To them, it is bigger than they are and they believe that this cause will make society, or at least some part of it, better. A passionate leader makes difficult decisions in the face of danger or adversity with conviction and courage.

2. Vision

Vision is something born out of that passion a leader has. It takes passion and commitment in order to study a plan, system, issue or subject enough to create a vision. A leader with vision takes their passion and finds ways to make changes to develop a better future for those he leads. Born out of passion, vision is actually found through the use of two other important qualities: intellectual drive and creativity.

3. Intellectual Drive and Knowledge

A true leader never stops learning about the world around them. They need to keep educating themselves in order to stay at the top of their game. Whether it is studying the competition, the industry, history or just learning to expand on their own knowledge foundation, that intellectual drive keeps a leader from being complacent. It keeps them moving forward and helps them overcome obstacles that may stop others.

4. Creativity

Nobody has ever accomplished anything by following the status quo. Over the course of history, it has been leaders who have broken from or expanded the norm, ones not afraid to take a risk and try something different who have stood on top.

5. A Combination of Confidence and Humility

It takes passion to drive something. It takes vision to re-create it, but it takes confidence to carry it all out. A law of physics states that a body at rest tends to stay at rest. Without the confidence to spring into action, nothing changes. However big-headed egocentrics are very dangerous. These leaders also have a touch of humility. A good leader is only as good as the people they surround themselves with. Being aware enough to utilize gifted people inside the company, organization or other entity is imperative to the overall success of that entity.

6. Communicator

There have been horrible leaders over the course of time that have driven people to the edge of destruction just by using their ability to speak. However, there has not been one good leader who couldn’t. The ability to communicate and rally the troops has, and always will be an integral piece of leadership.

7. Values

Without values, leadership becomes manipulation and exploitation. It is things like respect for other and respect for society in general that has made some of the world’s best leaders great. This does not mean that a leader has to be warm and fuzzy to be successful. Respect and warmth are two completely different ideas. These values shape everything discussed before. It is the basis in which we all grow.

Each leader has their strengths based in one of these ideas, but has a little bit of each. Take a look at what you think your strengths are. Do they fit this idea? How can you change to better help your organization? Think about it.

What are some other important qualities that leaders should possess? Leave a comment!


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2 Responses to The 7 Qualities of an Effective Leader

  • Marissa @ Thirty Six Months

    Communication is really essential. If you’re not good at that, tendency is the people who work for/with you won’t understand you and that will create confusion.

  • Mark Ellsworth

    Ben, I feel that self awareness is an important attribute that truly great leaders possess. I enjoyed your post.