Quality or Position?
There are many different types of leaders. There are those who are placed into leadership positions due to accomplishments such as consistently leading a team to success. There are also those who are placed in positions due to company politics. Others might be leaders because they are more senior and experienced within an organization. But simply being placed in a leadership position does not make you a leader. If you do not possess qualities of leadership, then people will likely only follow you because they are required to or they just want to keep their jobs. True leaders are those who make a difference and influence others as a result of the qualities they possess. They are remembered and cherished by those they influence.
Qualities of Leadership
True leaders are characterized by countless descriptions such as determination, sincerity, concern, drive, empathy, trust, hard work, passion, courage, wisdom, etc. Leaders inspire and motivate others using these qualities. These qualities are central to who a leader is and often become central to those who follow and what they become.
An Example of a Great Leader
When I think of great leaders, I think of Lawrence E. Corbridge, who is a prime example of a great leader and possesses many qualities of a great leader and has inspired me to be a great leader. Lawrence is a master mentor, coach, and communicator. He has passion for excellence and a drive for results. He does whatever it takes to succeed within his sphere of influence but not at the expense of others. During my opportunities to work with him, he communicated and clearly instilled the vision he had for our organization. This skill made a lasting impression on my mind and heart. Through this mentor, I was motivated and inspired to be proactive, work hard, be disciplined, and to have passion in what I was trying to accomplish.
As a leader, he would meet with each person within the organization he managed to discuss how they were coming along with their goals and to discover concerns or challenges. He would personally express his gratitude for my work and show concern for my welfare. When I made mistakes he would patiently guide me on how to resolve it and how to avoid making the same mistakes in the future. Never did he have to use coercion or force to compel me to work. He helped me see the critical part I played in the success of the organization. The organizations success was my success.
“The best executive is the one who has sense enough to pick good men to do what he wants done, and the self-restraint enough to keep from meddling with them while they do it.” - Theodore Roosevelt
As you cultivate these qualities and integrate them into your life, you will see a marked difference in the response of employees with regards to quality of work and efficiency. You will see an increase in drive, initiative, and overall satisfaction from those you lead.