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Strong leaders are the backbones of all successful organizations. They are the intellectual powerhouses that use their skills to not only achieve short-term success but also maintain it in the long run.

Although some people are naturally blessed with certain leadership qualities, the traits of a strong leader are just specific skill sets that almost anyone can learn and perfect. Here are the top 7 traits crucial to becoming an influential leader.

1. Communication Skills

This one is a no-brainer. Good communication is an essential life skill, but it’s especially crucial for effective leadership. Effective communication and effective leadership are intertwined (Leading Effectively Staff, 2023). Successful leadership requires excelling at communicating effectively across all organizational levels. For optimal results, understand how your audience best adsorbs information and tailor your communication style and method accordingly. For example, depending on your team dynamics, your employees might be more receptive to in-person meetings versus emails.

Work on becoming an attentive listener so you can gain a better understanding of the other person’s view. Be clear, concise, and intentional when communicating and setting goals and objectives. 

Remember, communication is not always verbal. Be mindful of your body language and tone, as they play a big part in how your message is perceived.

2. Good Sense of Responsibility

With great power comes great responsibility. As a leader, you’re not only accountable for your personal growth but also the growth of your team and, ultimately, your organization. Hence, it is imperative that you have a strong sense of responsibility and don’t shy away from taking ownership of your decisions and mistakes.

3. Empathy

An empathetic attitude towards people goes a long way in understanding different perspectives and will help you better navigate varying opinions and situations. It will build trust and respect as people will view you as someone who truly cares about them. This, in turn, will also improve workplace conditions and will encourage a positive environment. Set up regular meetings to check in with your team to ensure their personal goals are aligned with the company goals and allow them to share any challenges with you.

4. Goal-Oriented

At the end of the day, results matter. Share your vision with your team so they have a clear understanding of what the end goal is. Set your team up for success by establishing realistic expectations and utilizing project management tools to track your team’s progress.

Remember, you always want to progress forward, so make it a habit to actively reevaluate and realign your strategies to ensure you’re hitting those targets.

5. Agility

In a business environment, change is inevitable. Successful leaders understand that their strength lies in their ability to swiftly adapt to unexpected changes. Learn to embrace change gracefully and be confident in making the necessary decisions to better your organization (Schroeder, 2020). Don’t be afraid to seize opportunities as they come by, and be flexible with your strategies.

6. Team Motivator

Your success as a leader is dependent on your team’s success because, ultimately, their hard work will bring your vision to life. Invest time in understanding what motivates your team and set incentives to encourage them to push their limits.

Implement team-building exercises to promote teamwork, improve communication, and increase bonding, such as team outings.

7. Lead By Example

Lastly, become the leader your team will look up to and inspire them to use their dedication and intelligence to accomplish complex tasks. Celebrate individual achievements and provide a work environment that fosters creativity and encourages outside-the-box thinking.

References

Leading Effectively Staff. (2023, January 27). 15 tips for effective communication in leadership. Center for Creative Leadership. https://www.ccl.org/articles/leading-effectively-articles/communication-1-idea-3-facts-5-tips/

Schroeder, B. (2020, March 11). Change is hard but unavoidable. Eight insights on embracing change. Forbes. https://www.forbes.com/sites/bernhardschroeder/2020/03/11/change-is-hard-but-unavoidable-eight-insights-on-embracing-change/?sh=2546240b2ec8

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