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The Traits of a Good Leader

Light bulb-PhotoRoom.png-PhotoRoom “Leadership is communicating to people their worth and potential so clearly that they are inspired to see it in themselves.” - Stephen Covey

What does it mean to be a good leader? As a small business owner-manager, you might often wonder about how and whether you can be a good leader.

Leadership is not a simple concept, and there is no one definitive answer to the question above. However, some common traits and skills can help anyone become a more effective leader.

Some of them are:

1. Vision

A good leader a clear vision of what they want to achieve and how they will get there. They communicate this vision to their team and inspire them to work towards it.

2. Integrity

They are honest, ethical and trustworthy. They act in accordance with their values and principles, and they do not compromise them for personal gain or convenience. They also hold themselves and others accountable for their actions and results.

3. Empathy

They care about the well-being and needs of their team. They listen to them, understand their perspectives and emotions, and show compassion and support. They also respect the diversity and differences of their people and create an inclusive environment where everyone feels valued and respected.

4. Influence

They have the ability to persuade, inspire, and motivate others to join them in their journey to fulfill their vision. They leverage the power of social networks and relationships to build trust and rapport with their team and stakeholders.

5. Learning

They are always learning and improving themselves. They seek feedback, reflect on their performance, identify their strengths and weaknesses, and take action to address them. They also encourage their team to learn and grow, and they provide them with opportunities and resources to do so.

These are some of the characteristics that define a good leader, but they are not exhaustive or exclusive. Different situations may require different types of leadership styles or approaches, and different people may respond differently to different leaders. Therefore, a good leader is also flexible and adaptable, able to adjust their behavior and strategy according to the context and the needs of their team.

Being a good leader is not easy, but it is rewarding. It requires hard work, dedication, passion, courage, humility, and self-awareness. It also requires a willingness to serve others, rather than being served by them. A good leader is not someone who commands or controls others, but someone who empowers and enables them to achieve their full potential.

This article begins with a quote from Stephen Covey. Read about Covey's Leader Formula here. 

Keep reading: How to Lead Like a Captain: The Leader-Leader Philosophy