Traits of A Leader:
... inspire action.
Try to paint a vision of the future that inspires your people to do whatever it takes to get there.
The best leaders also clear away the organizational roadblocks that constrain employees’ natural
creativity and initiative, unleashing a tremendous amount of energy in the process.
... be optimistic.
We all want to work with and for people who lift us up into the clouds instead of dragging us
down into the mud. Make sure to seek out the positives in your people, helping them overcome
their own feelings of self-doubt and spreading optimism throughout your organization.
... have integrity.
Research shows that the top thing that employees want from their leaders is integrity. Be honest,
fair, candid and forthright, and treat everyone in the same way that you yourself would want to
... support and facilitate your team.
For people to do their very best work, they need an organizational environment that supports
them by making it safe to take risks, to tell the truth, and to speak up ... without being punished
for doing so. Support your employees by creating this kind of environment, and it will facilitate
their progress toward attaining your organization’s goals.
... have confidence.
Highly effective leaders know deep down inside that they and their team can accomplish
anything they set their minds to. Failure is not an option. Tentative leaders make for tentative
employees. If you’re confident, your people will be too.
In any organization, knowledge is power, and great leaders ensure that every employee, from the
very top to the very bottom of the org chart, is provided with complete and up-to-date
information about the organization’s goals, performance, successes and failures. To achieve this
level of connection, you should also provide ample channels for two-way communication
between employees and managers, actively soliciting their ideas for improvement and rewarding
employees for submitting them.
... be decisive.
One of the most basic duties of any leader is to make decisions. Highly effective leaders aren’t
afraid to be decisive and to make tough calls quickly when circumstances require it. Once you
have all the information you need to make an informed decision, then don’t hesitate--make it.
And once you make a decision, then stick with it unless there is a particularly compelling reason
for you to change it.
No matter what type of organization or industry you're in, it's possible to become a more
effective leader, inspiring your people to give their very best every day of the week. Make a
point of practicing these 7 leadership traits, and you will be a highly effective leader too.
The Impact of Leadership on Organizational
Leadership is an important function in small business. Leadership and management represent two
completely different business concepts. Leadership is commonly defined as establishing a clear vision,
communicating the vision with others and resolving the conflicts between various individuals who are
responsible for completing the company&rsquo;s vision. Management is the organization and
coordination of various economic resources in a business. Leadership can have a significant impact on an
Setting the Tone
Small business owners usually set the leadership tone for their organization. Owners accomplish
this by developing a mission or set of values by which they operate their company. This creates a
minimum level of acceptance for employee behavior. Business owners often create company
policies or guidelines from the company&#039;s mission or values. Policies and guidelines
also give business owners the ability to remove under-performing employees from the company.
Three types of leadership are common in business: authoritarian, democratic and laissez-faire.
Each type of leadership impacts organizational performance differently. Authoritarian leadership
is commanding and sets clear expectations for employees in the organizational. Democratic
leadership encourages feedback and input from managers or employees regarding organizational
performance. Laissez-faire is a hands-off approach, where managers and employees work
according to their own preference and schedule. This leadership style can lead to poor motivation
and work practices.
Successful organizational performance relies on the proper behavior from managers and
employees. Leadership can be an evolutionary process in companies. Business owners who
provide leadership can transform an employee from a worker completing tasks to a valuable
team member. Leadership skills can help change an employee&rsquo;s mentality by
instilling an ownership mindset. Employees who believe they have a direct owner-style
relationship with the organization often find ways to improve their attitude and productivity.
Leadership can help a business maintain singular focus on its operations. Larger business
organizations can suffer from too many individuals attempting to make business decisions.
Business owners can use leadership skills to get managers and employees on the same page and
refocus on the original goal. Leadership skills can also help correct poor business practices or
internal conflicts between employees.
Leadership can have a negative impact on organizational performance. Leaders who are overly
dominant or become obsessed with achieving goals can overlook various details in the business
organization. Managers and employees may also be less willing to help dominant or extremely
critical leaders with accomplishing goals and objectives. Dominating leadership creates difficult
business relationships. Other companies and business owners avoid dominant leaders who
consistently request financial benefits.
Leadership traits, motives and characteristics
In understanding leadership, it’s important to have a clear understanding of traits, characteristic, and
behaviors of leaders. Traits are very closely related to how we perceive others to be leaders for example
if we see a confident and charismatic person we perceive them to be good leaders. Effective leaders
must have cognitive skills, relationship with subordinates and personality traits and characteristics.
(DuBrin& Ireland, page 270).
Effective leadership Traits
Leadership traits are stable patterns of behaviours and consistent internal states that explain a person’s
behavioural tendencies. A leader needs to have Self-confidence Emotional Stability, Sense of humour,
enthusiasm, warmth, high tolerance for frustration, self-awareness, self-objectivity, trustworthiness,
dominance, extroversion, and assertiveness. How determining which set of traits and characteristics are
important will depend on the situation. For example enthusiasm may be more important to a sells
manager than a stock manager.
Listed below are the traits and characteristics that are associated with leadership efficiency
Self confidence. Leaders need to believe in their leadership skills and ability to achieve objectives. Self
confidence also instils confidence among the subordinates. In a group members will follow a leader who
is confident and who seems to know what they are doing, while a manager who is not confident but
tries to act confident will be seen as working under pressure (DuBrin& Ireland, page 272).
Assertiveness. A leaders needs to be straightforward in expressing their opinions, feelings, demand and
attitude, as it helps them to attain their objectives. This may include demanding high performance from
workers and correcting them on their mistakes (DuBrin& Ireland, page 272, avoiding being aggressive.
Enthusiasm. Enthusiasm helps a leader build good relationship with his group members, as employees
perceive it as a reward for doing something right. Enthusiasm may be expressed verbally or nonverbally
though handshakes, or touching (DuBrin& Ireland, page 272).
Power Motive. Power motive leaders spent a lot of time thinking in how to alert the thinking and
behaviour of others, act with vigor and determination, and care bout their personal standing with those
around them. This is very important as it show that the leader is keen on influencing others (DuBrin&
Ireland, page 272).
Need for Achievement. This refers to a strong desire to achieve things for their own sake. In the attempt
to finish and get things done on time acts as a force for innovation.
Sense of Humour. A sense of humour relieves boredom and tension. A sense of humour can also defuse
hostile situations. It also makes the leader more approachable (DuBrin& Ireland, page 270).
Leadership motive are the reasons or what drives individuals to be leaders this are:
This is the need to control other people, be responsible for them and influence their
behavior. Leaders are also motivated by the need to control resources. This is also a key
motivator for success.
Drive & Achievement Motivation
Individuals become leaders because the get Joy in accomplishment for its own sake. They are usually
thinking of how to do a job better and how they can progress in their career. The need for achievement
or to excel in their work place is because they are interested in the monetary reward that come with it.
Strong Work Ethic
There are people who generally belief in dignity of work. This type of people end up being leaders as a
result of their strong work ethics. This type of leaders believe that a group task is worthwhile, and hence
gain the support for the leadership position.
Tenacity This is the Wilful Determination of a leader to achieve something, usually there
might be a problem that is persisting at the time and they have the urge to solve it.
In order to be an effective leader one must have Cognitive traits. These are mental abilities and
knowledge. Five cognitive skills that are particularly important are knowledge of the
task/Business, creativity, insight into people and situation, openness to new experience, and
farsightedness and conceptual thinking.
Knowledge of the Task/Business
Knowledge of the task/ Business is important as they are the skills required by a leader to complete
specialised task. Its known that Intelligent leaders make more effective plans, strategies, and decisions
than to less intelligent ones. It would be very hard for leader to gain subordinate respect if they if they
don’t understand the technical details of their work
Leaders should posses an effective problem solving ability or intelligence. Creative of a
leader also give the organisation a completive advantage age.
Insight into People & Situations
Effective leaders must have the ability to read staff and the situation. This comes in handy
when it comes to assigning jobs or choosing group leaders.
Farsightedness and conceptual thinking
This is the ability to think in abstract terms, i.e. to being able to simplify complex situations
and determine the correct solution. A farsighted leader is one who can set long term goal
that they need to achieve and know where they want the organisation to be in future. This
also gives guideline to the members on the way forward.
Openness to Experience.
A effective leader should show willingness to experiment with unproven methods and
approaches. The leader should be open to the subordinates suggestion, and encourage
group work as this motivates the members and feel part of the successes.