5 Qualities of a Great Leader
We often recognize great leadership when we see it, but we may not be aware of what specific
qualities and practices make a leader great.
What is the secret to becoming a great leader? Well the answer is that there is no such secret! Best
leaders simply emerge from years of hard work, experience, perspective, reflection, learning and
sometimes a bit of luck. The best leaders have developed certain qualities over a period of time that
less effective leaders have not been able to spot or inculcate. Here are 5 qualities of great leaders
along with examples of real life business leaders who practiced those qualities.
1. Lead with Purpose
‘People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it!’
Great leaders have well defined purpose while average leaders just show up to work. Common
purpose, shared values and aligned vision symbolizes foundation of a sustainable organization with
It is very true- that profit doesn’t drive purpose, but purpose certainly drives profit.
Chetan Maini, Reva Electric Car Company
Chetan has a great vision of a day when we will go eco-friendly, shun our gas guzzlers and go
electric. He firmly believes that electric vehicles are the answer, although he may be ahead of his
time. This purpose of an eco-friendly world is the driving force behind his leadership role at Reva.
2. People Oriented
‘Treat your people like they make a difference and they will!’
Leaders cannot be leaders without followers. Today, people are most precious assets of any
organization. A good leader should earn trust, loyalty and respect of his team. A great leader is
humble, takes inputs from everyone, takes the blame when things go wrong and shares credit when
things go right. A great leader does not just create followers, he creates more leaders!
Suresh Kamath, Laser Soft Infosystems
Most of IT companies believe that they have to grow at a rapid pace at all costs. But Suresh has a
different perspective on growth. He believes that if a company grows at break neck speed and the
employees are stressed and burned out, not only such growth is not worth the trouble, but it also
not sustainable. Putting people first is the hallmark of great leaders.
3. Empower Others
‘Leadership is communicating to people their worth and potential
so clearly that they come to see it in themselves.’
A leader’s job is to bring out the best in people. Things can be managed, people have to be led!
Giving them authority and resources to do their work and removing obstacles is a leader’s job.
When leader trusts his people, they gain more confidence and pride in what they do every single day
and that creates a lasting impact.
One manufacturing executive facing a possible plant closure trained all employees to read and
interpret financial statements. The company’s financial information is shared and discussed
regularly—by machine workers and clerical staff as well as management. The company not only has
avoided bankruptcy but has become consistently profitable by expecting everyone in the company
to act as a business owner.
4. Get Personal
‘The secret to success is good leadership, and a good leadership is all
about making the lives of your employees better’
The best leaders don’t consider it a weakness to get personal, to display empathy, kindness, and
compassion – rather it is their greatest strength.
Great leaders understand that failure to engage is in fact a failure to lead. They know and care for
their people. They expect the best of people and create self-fulfilling prophecies about how ordinary
people can produce extraordinary actions and results. By maintaining a positive outlook and
providing motivating feedback leaders stimulate, rekindle and focus people’s energies and drive.
Indra Nooyi, PepsiCo CEO
Nooyi believes that leaders should work "to bond employees to the company" and focus on
engaging them "with their hearts" as much as their minds, in order to build loyalty and morale. She
writes letter to her employees’ parents to let them know what a great job their kids have done at
5. Leaders are lifelong Learners
‘Today a reader, tomorrow a leader’
A good leader never loses his childlike curiosity, to know more, do more and learn more. Great
leaders are great learners. They are always open to new information and new idea and aren’t afraid
to experiment and try new ways of doing things.’
John F. Kennedy – the youngest man ever to be elected President of the United States – once said,
‘Leadership and learning are indispensable to one another.’
Developing leaders within an organization is critical for the success and profitability of any company.
We, at Outstanding Productivity help build leaders through our very unique, 30
years research and evidence based ‘Everyday Leadership’ program. It is available
in in 2 formats:
Option 1: 2 day customized in-house program
Option 2: a complete intervention which includes
Customized Training - 2 Days
2 Follow up sessions
o 1 Day intervention(after 15/30 days)
o 1 Day intervention (after 30/60 days)
6 con calls – interval of every 15 Days
Personality/ Leadership profiling
Call us to see a 10 minute demo of how our leadership intervention can help boost your leadership
development framework and company’s performance. Identification of Live Projects and Project
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