Over the years we at Leadership Platform have had personal leadership conversations and dealings with hundreds of top performers local and foreign. We are often expected to express our feelings on what constitutes a good leader. In due course one develops a sense of how to gauge quality leaders. At the same time we have learnt that individuals are unique in their own right and we are often inspired by them.
The key attribute of a good leader: They possess a believable positive momentum
They manifest a spirit of believable positive momentum (movement). The perception of an authentic on-going momentum in and around them is tangible and can be felt. We know that a positive momentum is built around a positive attitude.
As building blocks of a believable positive momentum we would expect to find the following attributes:
1. They drill down to essences
They manifest an acute quest for essences that govern their jobs and attitude. They are passionate about drilling down to essences of challenges, resources, conversations, motivational drives and leadership principles.
The opposite of essences may be defined as wastage. Good leaders avoid wastage of talent, opportunity, time and resources like the plague. One of the reasons that good leaders always tend to be good listeners is precisely because they are constantly on a quest for essences and are prepared to listen to everybody with respect and dignity.
2. Processing negative perceptions
They are generally courageous in the manner in which they identify and confront negative perceptions and obstacles. They have a sense of reality about the nature of resistance to all positive movement and they are committed to process such negative perceptions at all times without exception.
3. Visualising positive possibilities
In harmony with their passion to face negative perceptions as a reality of positive movement, they are constantly focused on positive possibilities that are inherent in every situation. They never allow negative perceptions to be in festering stand-alone mode without slotting such perceptions into a positive movement process.
4. They integrate values and aspirations
They have a sense of integrated values and aspirations, even a passion. Mediocre leaders tend to separate values and aspirations (personal and organisational desires). Better leaders deliberately or instinctively integrate personal as well as organisational aspirations with positive and universal values.
Because of their personal passion for integrated values and aspirations, they tend to successfully generate the same kind of integration with the stake holders inside and outside the organisation.
5. Believable big picture direction
They have a sense of believable big picture directional integrity (clear strategy, objectives, planning and accountability culture)
6. Effective delivery structure
They achieve optimised structure and resources around them. They tend to mobilise, optimise, economise and integrate supporting structure and organisation to serve their values and objectives.
7. On-going evaluation and adaptation leadership
They project a sense of CONC (cost of non-compliance) compensation leadership. They evaluate constantly and act tough if required when anything corrupts their sense of purpose.
Good leaders are often very different in terms of personalities and leadership styles. They are all human and they tend to allow themselves to be vulnerable so that they can extend and grow.
If we look closely at the above listed attributes we will recognise them in us and around us as well. To ignore any of the above elements is probably tantamount to planning for failure. To develop these attributes in us with courage and integrity means in our experience that we are well on our way to developing a recipe for confidence and successful positive movement in our respective areas of leadership. At Leadership Platform we see such positive movement around us every day.