Greator

What qualities must a successful leader possess?

Reading time 9 minutes
What qualities must a successful leader possess?

Holding a management position requires a high degree of responsibility, diplomacy and crisis resistance. Not every boss is up to these demands. Perhaps you have also encountered superiors in your professional life who were visibly overwhelmed by their position or even exploited it for self-serving purposes.

The high turnover in many companies is due in no small part to employee dissatisfaction. Maybe you've thought about quitting your job in the past because you couldn't cope with the behaviour of the management? You are not alone in this. In fact, this happens quite often.

Are you looking for a promotion or thinking about starting your own business? Then you should definitely familiarize yourself with the most important characteristics of successful leaders.

What exactly do you mean by leadership qualities?

Everyone talks about leadership qualities. However, only very few people can clearly define what is actually meant by this. In earlier times, leadership qualities were primarily associated with unassailable authority. Nowadays, however, we know that strict hierarchies are not always an advantage. In modern companies - despite authority to issue directives - there is usually an exchange at eye level.

Leadership skills are the abilities of a person in a managerial position to lead employees to the desired result with the help of various leadership techniques. This desired result consists of the (successful) fulfilment of the work tasks to be completed. For this purpose, the manager must have qualities that are useful for motivation.

Other areas of responsibility in a management position include organisational activities, task planning and control. Whether a manager has the necessary leadership qualities can be checked by the feedback of his own superiors, his employees and customer satisfaction.

What makes a good leader?

A good manager has qualities that ensure that a productive and appreciative working atmosphere is maintained. A successful boss therefore not only has professional competence, but is also able to motivate his employees. Interpersonal communication plays a decisive role here.

This means that the manager takes the concerns of his team seriously and acts in a solution-oriented manner in the event of conflict. What sounds self-explanatory in theory is not so easy to implement in practice. After all, as a manager you are not only dealing with cooperative employees. As a supervisor, you also have to remain calm in difficult situations.

Social competence is the decisive factor that separates good leaders from bad ones. Your job as a manager is to motivate each employee to give their best. This only works through open discussions: What is preventing the employee from developing his or her full performance potential? What countermeasures need to be taken?

What competencies are expected of a manager?

The competencies expected of a leader depend heavily on the leadership style chosen. The most common leadership styles in modern companies include:

  • lateral leadership style (leadership at eye level)
  • Remote leadership style (virtual leadership at a distance)
  • digital leadership style (driving digital innovation)
  • cooperative management style (strong involvement of employees)
  • participative management style (increased responsibility and involvement of employees)
  • visionary leadership style (inspiring employees for an idea / vision)
  • situational management style (behavioural flexibility of the manager)
  • appreciative management style (trust, praise, exchange at eye level)
  • authoritarian leadership (Manager gives indiscreet instructions)

The most popular management style in this country is now the cooperative management style, in which employees are heavily involved in the decision-making and development processes. However, the final decision still rests with the manager.

In order to lead your team in a cooperative or participative manner, you as a leader should place great value on open communication, efficient delegation, and an appreciative Error culture lay. Furthermore, the willingness for self-reflection is required.

In all leadership styles that take place at eye level, the leader must be an assertive, stable personality. Since the authority to issue directives is partially or even completely eliminated, you should be all the more able to convince your team of the importance of the tasks.

In addition, digital and remote leadership has gained in importance, not least due to the corona pandemic. For this to work, a little organizational effort is required. The manager must establish clear structures so that everyone is assigned the correct tasks. Despite the physical distance, there should be a regular virtual team meeting.

What are the key characteristics of a bad leader?

Before we shed light on what qualities a good leader must possess, it makes sense to first look at the opposite: How can you recognize a bad leader?

A leader who is unsuitable or not up to their task is characterised by the following behaviours:

  • Arrogance
  • choleric behaviour
  • unfair decisions
  • humiliation of workers
  • Inability to delegate meaningfully
  • lack of or ill-conceivedness Time Management
  • unobjective expression of criticism
  • lack of empathy
  • Delay of important decisions
  • professional errors and omissions due to excessive demands
  • machismo

Particularly characteristic of an unsuitable manager is choleric behavior, which is sometimes somewhat clichéd in books and films. Behind the aggression often hides a deep insecurity of the superior, which he wants to hide from his team at all costs. The choleric behavior acts as a kind of protective shield, so to speak.

Does that mean some people are simply unfit to be bosses?

This cannot be said in such a general way. The good news is that bad leaders do not necessarily have to remain bad leaders. Provided that the ability for self-reflection is present, the leadership style can be improved (e.g. with the help of special coaching offers for managers).

Structural deficits such as time management are naturally easier to correct than interpersonal deficits. Those who are not empathetic in any way by nature will have a hard time winning the trust of their team. But there are learning opportunities in this regard as well: Insight and will provided.

Working on yourself is always a challenge. Leaders, however, have to face it. If you are already in a leadership position, get regular feedback from your team. What are you doing well? What areas could you improve?

The readiness and the will for continuous personal development are among the most important characteristics of a manager.

Leadership Traits: The 15 most important skills

By now you know that a manager must have qualities that ensure the satisfaction of the team and the smooth running of the work processes. Below we would like to present the 15 most important qualities in detail.

1. communication skills

We have already mentioned it, but the importance of communication should be made clear once again. As a manager, you must be able to communicate even complicated issues in an understandable way. Furthermore, it is essential that you are able to adjust to different mentalities in conversation. Not everyone can communicate in the same way!

2. self-confidence

Self-confidence is considered one of the most important qualities for leaders. Caution: Do not confuse self-confidence with arrogance! As a self-confident leader, you are aware of your strengths and rest in yourself because you have confidence in your abilities. You do not shy away from difficult situations because you know that you will find a solution.

3. decision-making reliability

A procrastinating manager who shies away from every important decision is to be seen as an absolute negative example. Making decisions is simply part of everyday work in a management position. Even at the risk of a decision turning out to be wrong in retrospect. Good managers are not only confident in making decisions, they are also decisive.

4. acting as a role model

As a supervisor, you are automatically being watched very closely. So you should stick to your own rules. Otherwise you will quickly look untrustworthy. It is therefore not a good idea to reprimand your employees for taking too many smoking breaks while you yourself go out for a smoke twice an hour. The same applies to punctuality and work discipline.

5. reasonable delegation of work tasks

Delegate is one of the most underestimated leadership traits. Yet delegation is essential to achieve the desired work result. Delegation means distributing tasks and authority in a meaningful way. In this way, the result is achieved faster and more efficiently. In order to be able to delegate, you must of course have precise knowledge of the capabilities of your employees or departments.

6. sense of responsibility

A supervisor always bears the ultimate responsibility. So in case of wrong decisions, you will be approached. You should always be aware of this. Weigh all your decisions carefully and be aware of the possible consequences. Delegating also involves a sense of responsibility. Do not distribute tasks indiscriminately, but always with the best possible end result in mind.

7. ability to deal with conflict

Wherever people work together, conflicts arise. This cannot be avoided. As a manager, it is your task to look for constructive solutions to the respective conflict issues. Here you take on the role of a moderator to mediate between the parties. If you yourself are at the centre of the conflict, objectivity and a neutral assessment are important.

8. organizational skills

The manager is where all concerns and tasks converge. Therefore, it is important that you always keep an overview of the current day-to-day business. Which topics have priority? What can still be postponed? The decision and organization is entirely up to you. Good managers keep an overview even under enormous external pressure.

9. flexibility

Not everything always goes as you planned. As a good leader, you keep your cool and react flexibly to unforeseen events. Try to see change as an opportunity. Inexperienced managers tend to quickly fall into a kind of shock paralysis. You should not make this mistake if you want to assert yourself as a leader.

10. motivational gift

Now let's revisit one of the most well-known leadership traits: the ability to motivate employees. Let your team share your vision. Good leaders know how to infect others with their enthusiasm. Also, don't skimp on appropriate praise. Show your team how important each and every one of them is.

11. knowledge of human nature

Eine ausgereifte Menschenkenntnis hilft dir bei der Einschätzung, welcher Mitarbeiter für welchen Aufgabenbereich geeignet ist. Fehleinschätzungen können schnell zu kostspieligen Verzögerungen führen. Auch bei der Einteilung von Arbeitsgruppen solltest du Wert darauf legen, dass die zusammentreffenden Charaktere miteinander harmonieren. Deine Menschenkenntnis schulst du am besten, indem du dich unter Menschen begibst!

12. maintaining and developing important contacts

Early in your career, make sure to build a supportive network. Stay in touch with your mentors, fellow students and former colleagues. Through regular professional exchange, you will gain inspiration and stay up to date professionally. Furthermore, it is also helpful as a manager to be able to ask other professionals for their advice and opinion.

13. appreciative error culture

Mistakes happen everywhere and to everyone. That is absolutely human. Nevertheless, it is important to expose and discuss sources of error in order to improve the quality of work in the long term. A successful leader has qualities that contribute to an appreciative error culture. Do not blame your employees, but analyse the problem objectively and solution-oriented.

14. a pinch of humour

Wondering why humor is one of the most important leadership traits? Then let's explain it briefly: A managerial position comes with enormous responsibility. However, if you act too doggedly, you run the risk of developing depression or burnout. Looking at situations with a sense of humor helps to stay mentally healthy.

15. ability to self-reflect

A successful leader continues to develop and learn. Question your behavior and analyze past mistakes. This is the only way to avoid them in the future. Detach yourself from the demand to be perfect. No one is, not even a manager. If you admit your own mistakes and openly learn from them, you will appear authentic and gain the respect and trust of your team.

{ "@context": "https://schema.org", "@type": "FAQPage", "mainEntity": [ { }, "@type": "question", "name": "What exactly is meant by leadership?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "

Everyone talks about leadership qualities. However, only very few people can clearly define what is actually meant by this. In earlier times, leadership qualities were primarily associated with unassailable authority. Nowadays, however, we know that strict hierarchies are not always an advantage. In modern companies - despite authority to issue directives - there is usually an exchange at eye level.

Leadership skills are the abilities of a person in a managerial position to lead employees to the desired result with the help of various leadership techniques. This desired result consists of the (successful) fulfilment of the work tasks to be completed. For this purpose, the manager must have qualities that are useful for motivation.

Other areas of responsibility in a management position include organisational activities, task planning and control. Whether a manager has the necessary leadership qualities can be checked by the feedback of his own superiors, his employees and customer satisfaction.

" } }, { }, "@type": "question", "name": "What makes a good leader?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "

A good manager has qualities that ensure that a productive and appreciative working atmosphere is maintained. A successful boss therefore not only has professional competence, but is also able to motivate his employees. Interpersonal communication plays a decisive role here.

This means that the manager takes the concerns of his team seriously and acts in a solution-oriented manner in the event of conflict. What sounds self-explanatory in theory is not so easy to implement in practice. After all, as a manager you are not only dealing with cooperative employees. As a supervisor, you also have to remain calm in difficult situations.

Social competence is the decisive factor that separates good leaders from bad ones. Your job as a manager is to motivate each employee to give their best. This only works through open discussions: What is preventing the employee from developing his or her full performance potential? What countermeasures need to be taken?

" } } ] }

FREE WORKBOOK

10 Business Coaching Tips for Your Career

You want to get to the next level in your job faster?

Then get 10 free tips to help you succeed in management and leadership now!
REQUEST NOW FREE OF CHARGE
Reviewed by Dr. med. Stefan Frädrich

Like this article? Don't forget to share!

Recommended by Greator

© copyright by Greator 2022
Greator Slogan
Press
Imprint
Data privacy
GTC
Cookie settings
© copyright by Greator 2021
chevron-down