Everybody wants to be a leader even if not all of us say it out loud. There is this wrong view held by some people that leaders are born naturally. And only natural born leaders get to be in leadership positions.
Even if that is true, the next problem, naturally, is what qualities make for a good leader? What don’t you have as an individual that precludes you from a leadership position?
To put it another way, what qualities were apparent in your colleague that made it possible for him to be appointed to that top management position ahead of others?
That is the crux of the matter in this day and age. In the days of Kings and monarchies, you could be sure even fools can be made leaders just because of birth.
These days, nobody bothers about your genes. Unless of course, you own the company or organization. Or the firm is a family heirloom.
But the biggest, well-managed businesses that survive the test of time have dispensed with the notion of leaders by birth. Anybody can be a leader.
That said, the colleague that was promoted ahead of the rest must have exhibited some leadership qualities in the course of work. So if you want to know if you are a leadership material in any sphere of life, these are the traits you should be exhibiting.
1. Always be ready with sound advice and counsel
Do colleagues at work, school, friends, and family gravitate towards you when they need advice on something? Or are you always ready to advise friends and family on how to go about something?
If the answer is ‘yes‘ on both counts, then you have what it takes to be a good leader. We generally get drawn to people who we feel can help us with our problems.
And in the same vein, people feel very comfortable with somebody like that at the helm of affairs. This is because people like that have time for others and it is very likely they won’t allow the perks of position cloud their judgment as leaders.
2. Others wait for you to make the first move
This is one of the most powerful qualities of a person with leadership qualities.
When you discover that people around you don’t do anything important until you point them in a particular direction with your action(s), that makes you a de facto leader.
It means there must be something about you they trust absolutely. And perhaps, you have already proven to them in the past that you have sound judgment.
Even when you are not around, they would delay as long as possible before making a move. Hoping that you’d show up and lead the way.
3. You dislike mediocrity
Everybody’s character is the sum total of what they do every day. If over the course of your lifetime, you’ve always strived for excellence, that is how people would view you: as a person dedicated to the pursuit of excellence.
If you are known for excellence in all you do, it is a straight and narrow path to a leadership position for you. Even if you are not a leader yet, people around you would try to emulate you.
So if you shun mediocrity and always insist on the best, you have strong leadership traits in you already.
4. You are always upbeat
Leaders, like the captain of a sinking ship, are the last to give in to despair, at least publicly.
Do you always exude positivity no matter the challenges? Do you have a never-say-die attitude? Do you always try to lift others from the pits of despair? Then you are a leader.
It is not that leaders don’t see the hopelessness of a situation or the difficulties involved, it is simply that they understand the futility of giving in to despair.
5. You are compassionate, respectful, and humble
Do you always make time to care and support people around you to make sure they reach their desired goals? There is a leader nestling inside you just waiting to be unleashed.
Being compassionate and respectful are not traits acquired once you become a leader. These are qualities that are already a part of you and they color all your dealings with others.
And if added to all that, you are also known to approach people and tasks with humility, you have one of the best leadership qualities any man can hope to have.
6. You always want to learn more
Successful leaders everywhere always want to learn more.
Nothing is too small for them to know. To them, every bit of knowledge is important in the overall scheme of things.
If you find yourself always seeking for self-improvement, you might not know it, but you are preparing yourself to lead. Knowledge is power, and good leaders never want to be ignorant about anything.
So, which of the above leadership traits do you rate the most? We would love to read what you think about these qualities.