Tag Archives: Characteristics of Great Leaders

Characteristics That Make A Great Leader

23 Jan

The San Francisco 49ers have had their share of losses over the past nine years and no one expected the team to be in the NFC championship game this season. While there is certainly more than one single reason attributing to this success, Jim Harbaugh deserves much of the credit.  For those that may not know Jim Harbaugh, he is in his first year as head coach of the San Francisco 49ers and has led this amazing turn-around after almost a decade of dismal performance by the team.  What are the characteristics that make great leaders like Jim Harbaugh both in sports and in business?

Here are my top picks;

Authentic and Sincere.  People trust a leader who is authentic, who knows who they are inside and allows that to show to the outside world.  It doesn’t work to be something you’re not.  People figure that out pretty fast and you loose their trust.  People won’t follow a leader they don’t trust.

Leads By Example.  He does as he expects his people to do.  It didn’t work when you were a kid and your parents said, “Do as I say not as I do”.  A leader cannot expect his team to perform at a certain level, if he does not do so himself.  I had a manager once who wanted all his employees in the office by 8:30am, but he would show up around 11:00am each day.  He was not a credible leader because he didn’t set the example of performance that he expected from his people.button showing the word "leadership"

Doesn’t Dwell on Failure.  He doesn’t dwell on what didn’t work. He looks forward. Dwelling on past failure only magnifies the situation and takes the time and energy away from focusing on what it takes to be successful.

High Energy and Enthusiastic.  He loves what he does and his energy and enthusiasm is contagious. He always remains positive under uncertain and stressful circumstances, this allows the team to maintain a positive outlook and their enthusiasm.

Truly Cares.  He cares about his people and takes the time to get to know them.  He builds relationships with them by understanding and attending to their needs.

Accepts Input.   He realizes his limitations and that he cannot know everything.  He wants and looks to his people to provide ideas and solutions.

Do you agree?  What do you think makes a great leader?

Jim Harbaugh’s glow leads 49ers out of darkness, Scott Ostler, sfgate.com
Is Your Management Style Effective? Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp.
Keeping the Enthusiasm:  How to Encourage Your Team, by Kathy Ver Eecke

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