Understanding 7 Leadership Traits: BORN OR MADE?
Regardless of whether maintaining your own business or managing groups in an office environment, having 7 leadership traits is key to interact with employees, team members, and stakeholders. Understanding your leadership style is the first step of improving your strengths and qualities. Let’s start with a quote from Warren Bennis;
“Leadership is the capacity to translate vision into reality.”
Every project thrives upon the relationship between diverse teammates and the leader. Today the question is; can you also be one?
What are some of the characteristics a leader is supposed to have? Is it courage, wisdom, delegation? In this passage, we are going to break down a leader right down to its bricks, and we are going to build a leader from the scratch. It’s our utmost goal to be a part of your self-discovery with our curious inquiries.
What is leadership? Who is someone you’ll call a “leader”? Is a leader born, or made?
Primarily, leadership does not depend on title. Every team needs a leader, and the arrows eventually point towards someone and accelerate him/her as the new leader, if it’s not already decided from the beginning.
Leadership comes with a great amount of responsibility. One has to be able to motivate the members, to build a team. To build a team, one has to communicate his/her thoughts in the most effective way possible. Understanding your leadership style helps you to improve your skills to become a good communicator. There might be obstacles on the way, but a leader eventually figures out the way to make that long jump, and succeed in the end.
A leader is determined, persistent, and stops at nothing.
Would you consider yourself a leader?
First off, what does a leader do?
What are leadership qualities?
7 Leadership Traits
We have narrowed down what is expected of a leader into 7 categories:
To start with, a leader believes.
When you think about it, it sounds too simple. One naturally believes the job (s)he is doing.. Right? Psychologically, it doesn’t always work that way. Our mind is armed with the best tools to test us. Shortly, one example of this would be our basic instincts; death and love. While you are doing your best, some part of you just carries the urge to ruin it all the time. It usually unveils itself in a voice, always telling you that it’s not good enough. At some point, you ask yourself; “am I good enough?”
Please know that it’s natural, and it doesn’t get better at any point; in fact, it gets worse. Elon Musk stated in one of his interviews that his fear never disappears, however it only leads him to work harder because the stakes are higher.
We are all afraid of failure.
But, you can have your enemy as a friend. Let your fear guide you to success by beating it. A leader is, too, scared. The possibility of the work being not good enough for him is terrifying, still, the only way a leader can make way through is by working harder.
Fear calls for success.
A leader holds on to the team members and the project even tighter because the leader knows that smooth sea has never made a sailor. The leader believes in a fruitful journey. Whether it might be a defeat or a victory, a leader never stops believing.
Communicate is one of the most important traits in leadership. One of the core necessities of being a leader is communication. A leader is responsible for communicating his/her thoughts effectively, to the team members and to someone who has absolutely no idea about the discussed subject. A leader should be able to crystallize the building blocks of the project and deliver them to the audience, piece by piece, in the best way they can understand.
A leader is responsible for spotting the talent from afar and shaping the team accordingly.
A leader breathes with eyes wide-open, always in the hunt for new talent! A leader knows what (s)he sees, spots the new team member from afar, nowadays even from the Zoom screen!
A leader has to build the best team with a great amount of diversity, and this includes observing each member with caution to determine who is suitable for which part of the project.
See more on Team Building here;
A leader is filled with abundance of ideas. Some of these get to see the light of day, some don’t, however; this is the first phase of the building procedure. It might be a long-term solution or a shortcut. Is it a product? How long is it going to take? Do we need a large team? How should the organization take place?
Another one of the leadership qualities is problem-solving. Anything may happen. It’s the age of technology; a computer may suddenly crash redoing the months-old effort, a team member might not be willing to take a step towards the leader’s direction. Okay, so do we abandon the project and start over, do we try and stop working with that teammate? Of course not!
Communication is key.
Think about the problem. Does it seem unsolvable? Break it down to its elements, how did it occur in the first place? Let’s continue from the teammate example: did you try listening what your team member wants? Is his way genuinely ill-advised? If so, find the optimal way to tell your member about it. That’s what a leader would do.
Keep in mind that nothing is impossible.
A leader is another human being, just like all of us. A human naturally has the ability to understand his/her own kind, even though we sometimes have the tendency to neglect it. Empathy is invaluable to understand a teammate’s perspective, just like the example above. Try and see the project from your team member’s eyes, or if a team member has missed a deadline with a reasonable explanation; try to understand it as a human being. In the end, a human life would not worth any project. While trying to adjust your temper, or stress, keep this in mind and try to be gentle. Empathy is the cornerstone of all 7 leadership traits and qualities.
A leader naturally becomes a role model, inspires commitment towards the same goal, with various characteristics and abilities. Some of the most critical of them are listed as:
A leader is conscious about self-capability and is honest about strengths and weaknesses. The point for the leader is finding ways to improve the strengths and push through the weaknesses. The leader presents him/herself as is, with previous achievements and defeats.
Renewal is vital for the leader. The leader tries to adapt another perspective at all times, treats failure as an opportunity to grow, and is focused on the final prize, excelling towards higher potential at all times.
There is always a vacancy for a neoteric perspective.
A leader is undoubtedly genuine in all of his/her actions and thoughts; says and acts the way (s)he genuinely believes is right.
Authenticity leads the pathway to candour.
A leader knows (s)he is not perfect, and is proud of it!
Everyone can make mistakes and it’s not the end of the world. A problem calls for a solution; imperfection might just be the way to spot a-month-old issue, which otherwise might have been ignored!
A leader has a 360’ perspective, he is always open to new ideas, whatever they might be! A leader is ready to have a constant stretch of perspective!
- Helps to Help
A leader asks nothing in return. Growth of a colleague just compliments his/her pull of being a leader. Whether it may be a question of research or a matter of concept, a leader is always there for the team members, and helps to help!
Is it really about taking credit for the job? No! A leader always stands in the background and appreciates the work of his/her colleagues. A leader does not own the success, instead (s)he gives a loud round of applause and celebrates with the team. Success is not earned alone and a leader is well aware!
7. LIFE-TIME LEARNER
A leader is hungry to learn! Whether the source may be a recent article or a favorite author. A leader is curious to know more, wherever the knowledge may come from!
And this happens to be the “mysterious” source of wisdom of the leader!
Understanding Leadership Traits Can Shape Your Success
Finally, a leader never quits. Failure is solely a tool for the leader to grow. The Leader takes the lesson, moves forward with the next project even stronger.
Nothing can stand in the way of a great leader; may it be a conflict or a rejection!
The most important traits of leadership include empathy, inspiration, communication, learning, and building. However, none of the leaders own all of the leadership qualities. Understanding 7 leadership traits and qualities will help you to shape your future and growth.
What are the vital features of a leader?
Do you have some of these to begin with? If so, can you also be a leader?
Comment below and let us know!
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7 Leadership Traits Infographic