13 Leadership Qualities to Become a More Productive Leader

The importance of integrity is paramount for any leader. It's not only a metric in employee evaluations, but it's also an essential trait for the individual and the organization. Our research has found that integrity can be a potential blind spot for organizations, so make sure your organization reinforces the importance of honesty and integrity for leaders at various levels. Delegating is one of the main responsibilities of a leader, but it can be difficult to delegate effectively.

The goal is to free yourself, while allowing your direct reports to grow, facilitate teamwork, provide autonomy and lead to better decision-making. The best leaders build trust in the workplace and in their teams through effective delegation. Effective leadership and effective communication are intertwined. The best leaders are trained communicators who can communicate in a variety of ways, from conveying information to inspiring others and advising direct reports.

And you need to be able to hear and communicate with a wide range of people from different roles, geographies, social identities, and more. The quality and effectiveness of communication between the leaders of your organization also directly affect the success of your business strategy. Find out how effective communication and better conversations can improve your organization's culture. While this is a more inside-centered trait, self-awareness and humility are paramount to leadership.

The better you understand yourself and recognize your own strengths and weaknesses, the more effective you can be as a leader. Do you know how others see you or how you present yourself at work? Take the time to learn about the 4 aspects of self-awareness and how to strengthen each component. Being thankful can lead to higher self-esteem, reduce depression and anxiety, and sleep better. Gratitude can even make you a better leader.

However, few people often say “thank you” in work environments, even though most people say they would be willing to work harder for a grateful boss. The best leaders know how to show gratitude in the workplace. Learning agility is the ability to know what to do when you don't know what to do. If you are a “fast” student or are able to excel in unknown circumstances, you may already be learning in an agile way.

But anyone can encourage and increase learning agility through practice, experience and effort. After all, great leaders are excellent students. For some people, “influence” feels like a bad word. But being able to convince people through the influential tactics of logical, emotional, or cooperative appeals is an important trait of inspirational and effective leaders.

Influence is very different from manipulation, and must be done authentically and transparently. It requires emotional intelligence and trust. Learn more about how effective influence can change the rules of the game. Retention is a challenge right now, even more so within the nonprofit sector. The key to keeping your best talent? Improve communication.

Get our tips for leaders under pressure. Create an inspiring vision of the future that motivates and inspires people to commit to that vision. Train and form a team, to be more effective in achieving vision. Perhaps the greatest quality a leader can have is vision: the ability to see the big picture of where the organization or team they work on is going, what they are capable of, and what it will take to achieve it. Just as important as having a vision is the ability to convey that vision to others and make them excited about it.

This means maintaining a positive but realistic presence within the organization, helping team members stay motivated and engaged, and remembering what they are working for. If you want to be considered for promotion or a job change to a higher level position (or even if you are already in a management position and are looking to hone your leadership skills to be as successful as possible), you may want to consider a more formal leadership education or training. There are many programs, from short-term leadership seminars to full degree programs, that can help you become a visionary, transformative leader and experience greater professional success. Employees should know that a leader will behave ethically. That they won't say one thing and do another. Or that if they make a mistake, they will take responsibility instead of blaming the team. Whether you're responsible for leading a Fortune 500 company or working toward your personal goals, first determine what type of leader you are.

This is the basis for developing the traits of a good leader, traits that are absolutely essential to their success. Leadership qualities will help you overcome obstacles, take risks, and find ways to live joyfully and thrive even in the most difficult times. What are the qualities of a good leader? Leadership isn't something people are born with; it's a skill that can be cultivated over time. When you can develop strong leadership attributes, you're positioned to inspire your entire team. Here are 13 basic leadership qualities that everyone can perfect to be a more productive leader: integrity; delegating; communication; self-awareness; humility; gratitude; learning agility; influence; retention; vision; confidence; focus; control. How can you demonstrate the confidence needed to be a good leader? More than half of human communication comes from nonverbal cues. Know how to set the right tone as a leader by letting your confidence show. Confident leaders win and inspire others because everyone else also wants to embody trust.

Practice strong nonverbal communication by standing up, making eye contact, and learning to control your restlessness. When you appear confident - even if you don't feel safe - others are more likely to follow your example and believe in your authority. Have you learned how really focus on what you want? Those who embody strong leadership qualities keep their eyes on the prize. They are very organized and plan ahead while remaining flexible enough to handle unexpected situations.

Edna Freemon
Edna Freemon

Freelance coffee lover. Friendly pop culture buff. Music maven. Professional twitter maven. Unapologetic zombie junkie. Lifelong food lover.

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