What leadership qualities do you have, where you have followers voluntarily even if you had no title or position or even not under the compulsion of the power if you have. What makes a great leader? The key is when he or she is accepted by the people around him or her. That is the key to successful leadership. So, that brings up the question, “when is a person “accepted”?
There are multiple attributes which when summed up, result in acceptance of a person as a leader. Any one quality alone is not sufficient. So, what are the those attributes that a leader should imbibe and display. Some of the cardinal attributes are,
(a) Professional Knowledge & Competence. In a Professional environment, you should know the duties of the appointment you are tasked with and the governing rules and regulations the appointee must wield. Thorough professional knowledge of ones duties lead to professional competence. When people look up to you for guidance, you have the final call on the subject. Never put others down when you display your knowledge. Instead, share the knowledge and you will command respect.
(b) Decision Making. The cardinal rule in decision making process is to take quick decision and have clarity around it. Ensure the decision is within the boundaries of the rules and regulations and benefits one and all and not one or a set of individuals only. When you take a decision, one must stand by that and face the consequences of it, good or bad. Never pass the buck to someone else who had helped you take the decision or implemented the decision of yours. Stand up and take ownership and be accountable to your decision. This is for standing up for your words and ensuring the people around are considered for any of the matters
(c) Moral Courage. The ability to call a spade, a spade or being straight forward in telling the facts and the effects of how a decision can impact the outcome is very important for a leader. It is easy to be a “Yes man”, and appease the seniors, but you must remember that once you lose the courage to speak out, you will be utilised by others for their personal gain. Under such circumstances you will be despised by your colleagues and subordinates.
While there are more attributes to elaborate, one of the most elementary, but most important attribute of an effective leader, is delivering the humane touch. Always be kind to yourself and to others. Never put yourself into a react situation but rather be responding considering the pros and cons of the situation. All these skills are within us but generously putting in practice makes you visible among others and it create the respect and loyalty towards you.