Leadership is one of those qualities we all know we need to develop but wonder how we can apply it every day at work.
According to Vadim Kotelnikov, who carried out a survey on leadership roles, there are a number of main qualities that people look for in their leaders, and I’ve listed them below:
Charisma Great Communication Energising People Competence in the Job Vision Now, in what order do you think Kotelnikov’s survey placed these, in order of importance to people working for them? Many people would assume that all five are very important, which, naturally, they are.
But his survey showed there was a definite leaning towards certain attributes above others. Top of the list was having a vision.
Especially in these trying times, vision is a key attribute followers want from their leaders in business. Vision is a short and inspiring statement of what your organisation intends to become and achieve in the near future.
It provides purpose and motivation to all who buy into it. It’s inspiring when someone who you look up to creates a vision that you want to aim for and can have confidence in realising.
Next on the list was Energising others. How would a leader do that? By setting the example and living the ethics of integrity and honesty.
People will follow that kind of leader wherever he takes them, and it doesn’t matter what position the leader is in the company: character says more about a person than anything else, because that is where results come from.
Third in the survey was great Communication. It’s simply not possible for a leader to inspire others unless their communication skills are honed and tested. People follow the example of leadership, so by communicating effectively with all stakeholders in a business, a leader shows their abilities in all areas.
Next came Competence, closely followed by Charisma.
The survey shows that the soft skills are of more importance than the actual ability to do the job. It follows that Charisma, although a desirable trait for a great leader, is something that is not an absolute necessity in order to be effective.
People don’t need passionate, inspiring speeches to motivate them; it’s more about how leaders get the best out of their people through intrinsic motivation.
So when you are wondering about how to get the best out of your people in the future, remember this survey and consider how you have communicated your vision for your team so that you energise them effectively.
That way, you have covered the top three qualities that people are looking for from their team leaders.
Originally published: 22 December, 2010
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