This article throws light upon the top fifteen qualities of an effective leader. The qualities are: 1. Intelligence 2. Physical attributes 3. Maturity 4. Vision and foresight 5. Motivation 6. Responsibility 7. Open mind 8. Self-confidence 9. Human relations attitude 10. Empower 11. Trustworthy and honest 12. Risks 13. Focus and follow-through 14. Humour 15. Non-coercive influence.
Quality # 1. Intelligence:
Leaders have higher level of intelligence than average people. Intelligence is mental ability to think scientifically and analyse accurately the problems arising before a person.
Quality # 2. Physical attributes:
Physical attributes and maturity level of determine personality of a person and hence an important factor in success of leadership.
Quality # 3. Maturity:
A leader should have high emotional stability and cool temperament. He needs high degree of tolerance. He should also welcome ideas of other people and have a sense of social maturity.
Quality # 4. Vision and foresight:
Vision and foresight, that is, being able to articulate future is the quality of good leader. A leader should be able to state concretely, what success will look like and how their organisation will get there.
Quality # 5. Motivation:
A leader must understand what motivates people. Simple, but too often ignored motivators include; praise (tell people they’ve done a job well – it is hard to overdo this one!), appreciation (a simple “thank you” will earn respect), and recognition (awards, credit on a report, a letter of commendation). Learning to give positive feedback is crucial. Team building exercises are a great way to build enthusiasm and cooperation.
Quality # 6. Responsibility:
A reliable leader should take responsibility for the consequences of his actions. He should be aware of the duties and obligations of the position he holds.
Quality # 7. Open mind:
A leader should absorb and adopt new ideas according to the situation. He should accommodate all viewpoints and alter his decision, if necessary.
Quality # 8. Self-confidence:
A good leader should have confidence whenever he initiates any course of action. Self-confidence is essential to motivate the followers and boost their morale.
Quality # 9. Human relations attitude:
A successful leader always tries to develop social understanding with other people. He is constantly busy achieving voluntary cooperation of the followers.
Quality # 10. Empower:
An effective leader must be able to empower others. He should teach people how to accomplish a task—and not do it for them (even if he can do it faster or better). Leader should tell people what he expects from them, give them the tools they need to succeed, and then get out of their way. He should learn to listen; nothing is more empowering than being heard.
Quality # 11. Trustworthy and honest:
A leader must be trustworthy and honest. No one will follow a dishonest or unfair leader with enthusiasm. Actions speak much louder than words.
Quality # 12. Risks:
Leaders must be willing to take risks. If they do things the way they’ve always been doing, they will always get what they had before. Leaders should also reward risk- taking in others.
Quality # 13. Focus and follow-through:
A leader should be able to focus and follow through. This involves setting priorities and doing what he says he will. Knowing what to do and then doing it (or delegating it to someone who will make it happen) is a critical leadership trait.
Quality # 14. Humour:
The ability to laugh at oneself demonstrates self-knowledge and is the easiest way to bring others along with him. Humour is a great tension breaker but inappropriate if used to belittle someone.
15. Non-coercive influence:
Though leaders can influence the behaviour subordinates by offering rewards and penalties for good and bad behaviour, good leaders normally use non-coercive influence to achieve individual and organisational goals.