Characteristics of a Leader

What is it about some people that we look to them as the leader?
Think back to the people who you have looked up to. The people who you knew who, or you at least felt, had the capacity to lead. You knew that this person in your life, a coach, a teacher, or some other role model, was a leader. You may not have even known what was meant by the term leader, but you knew just by watching them, listening to them or following them, they were the leader.

We all have a basic understanding of what leadership is and what leadership isn’t. We gained our understanding over the years through our own experiences. These experiences have shaped our understanding of what makes up a leader.

Many people over the years have researched the subject to provide a broader understanding of what makes a good leader by identifying common traits of good leaders.  Many other folks have provided their own views of what traits are common to leaders within their specific context. A specific context would be business, emergency services, and the military to identify a few.  However in a broad sense, most good leaders have the following traits (in no particular order) :

integrity, self-confidence, determination, intelligence, and sociability

As you think about these traits and compare this short list to the folks you know or admire as leaders, ask yourself, which of these traits can I identify with?  Which of these traits do I possess?  Which of traits listed do I need to work on?

My guess would be that some people looking in the mirror for these positive traits, can also see in their reflection the opportunity to improve in any one of them.


What is is about this list of traits that make them “baseline” elements for good leaders?