Posted by Neha Kale on 01 November 2013
Think great leaders adopt a tyrannical approach to management and a record of bulldozing everything in their path?
Dusty stereotypes of effective CEOs often hide the fact that good leadership is an art. The ability to steer a company to greater heights goes beyond determination, commercial acumen and the willingness to lead.
This seven-point checklist is a crash course on the traits aspiring leaders need to succeed.
Whether it’s the desire to roll out an online presence or conquer international markets, ambition can separate good leaders from the great. The world’s winning bosses share a knack for audacious strategies, along with the work ethic to put them into play. The best leaders also inspire workers to look past their current reality and work towards achieving their personal best. Their sense of ambition is stronger than fear of failure and helps them rise to every test.
Sometimes the act of striving towards business goals means you will fall. Confidence and ambition isn’t enough to weather commercial realities or negate the fallout from mistakes. Great leaders are unbelievably resilient – they can turn a disaster into a well-timed gain. This talent for picking themselves up when the chips are down is a powerful asset in the long run.
Like Olympic athletes and world-class artists, the best leaders approach their work as if it’s the only thing in the world. This unwavering focus sees them through 14-hour work days and fuels them when they can’t solve a business conundrum. The most inspiring leaders are those who don’t shy away from their mission and keep their eyes firmly fixed on the prize. They know when to sacrifice short-term wins in favour of pursuing greater highs.
Good leaders know that circumstances change and that agility is central to success. This means they’re unafraid to make a left-field move and know how to turn a precarious situation into an asset.
The best bosses know that business relationships are vital to their trajectory and exercise emotional intelligence at every turn. They know how to empathise with their clients and staff members and are prepared to lend a hand or back down. For a great leader, empathy doesn’t diminish a business – it adds value and helps it grow. It’s an attribute that consolidates loyalty and can see partnerships soar.
Kicking goals can often mean throwing away the rulebook and turning established business practices on their heads. The most powerful leaders relentlessly innovate and foster a culture of creativity to empower their employees to follow suit.
A sharp understanding of where your business is going is essential to entrepreneurial success. Great leadership relies on a clear vision of the future as well as the ability to take every measure to get there.
Great leadership often hinges on a cross-section of qualities each aimed at achieving larger goals. The best bosses know that overseeing a business is a complex, evolving matter – they combine razor-sharp determination with the desire to grow.