The Characteristics Of A Good Leader.
By Tom Costello
Friday, 21st June 2013
I asked members of various groups on LinkedIn to share their thoughts on what they believe are the 'Characteristics of a Good Leader?'  Here are the results.

Regulthafus Andrikus A good leader has an exemplary character, excited about their work, confident, tolerant of ambiguity and remain calm, composed and steadfast to the main purpose, keeping the main goal in focus, is able to think analytically and committed to excellence.

Ken Vincent I believe, Tom, that in the purest sense and definition management and leadership can be separated. However, I've never known a good GM that didn't have some leadership talent too. Of course, one can manage the mechanical tasks of being a manager without being a leader but to me that is not management in the full sense. Managing a hotel, or company, is more about managing the people than the paper and that takes leadership. One can learn the mechanics of waiting tables too, but that doesn't make him/her a good waiter.

Nic Marks Facilitative, autonomy-supportive, listening, clear, consistent, human, humane, positive.

Create the conditions for a happy high performing team/organization and the rest will take care of itself … too many images of "heroic" leaders for me … Tony Hseih of Zappos.com says a leader should be like a gardener – not an action hero

Kapil Notra To me, a leader has the following 2 distinguished qualities:
1. Ability to create more leaders
2. Ability to take decisions

Ronald Rocha Good, I would like to include also:
1 – Server
2 – Share responsibilities and victories
3 – A leader IS and do not need a JOB Position to STAY as a Leader.

Nandakumar R Should have Integrity, be supportive to his subordinates and stand by them.

Suzy Aya Honesty, respect and good communication

Tom Taylor All of these are great characteristics and we could fill a book with words/descriptions that describe leaders. But, in my opinion, the one most significant characteristic of great leaders is their ability to get others to "take action". Talk is cheap, but action is fundamental to organizational success. If we study the best of the best, they have this incredible ability to get others moving, taking action and achieving goals/objectives. These are not titled managerial positions, but incredible shakers and bakers – leaders of people. I am so amazed how great leaders impact others and help their organization become "best in class" in their industries. Just my opinion after studying great leaders for 35+ years.

Tom Sand I like what Tom has presented. I would add:
  • Strategy Development – Determining business direction in a changing environment and setting the course to achieve competitive advantage
  • Financial Management – Making business decisions that result in meeting business unit profit objectives and increase value to shareholders.
  • Stakeholder Management – Building and maintaining the working relationships and communications required to achieve business goals.
  • Transformative Leadership – Creating an environment that enables change and brings out the talent and commitment of employees.
  • Human Resource Management – Ensuring the availability of a diverse workforce that has the knowledge and skills to perform in changing, competitive environment.
  • Operations Management – Producing products and delivering service to meet or exceed customer expectations at a reasonable cost.
  • Project Management – Accomplishing large-scale projects in a timely manner to produce desired business results.
  • Managing Personal Growth – Continually learning and growing through self-awareness and focusing on personal life goals.
Jeff Golden I would add social and emotional intelligence and multiple ways to communicate ideas.

Bruce "Brew" Harrell Courage, loyalty, knowledge, effective communication skills, emotional intelligence, confidence, willing to listen, solution oriented, ability to develop and communicate effective vision, action oriented! In the USMC we used to summarize leadership this way: 1. Never, eat, sleep, or drink before your Marines do! 2. Never ask them to do anything you cannot or will not do! 3. ALWAYS lead from the front! 4. Treat them with RESPECT! 5. Be fair……..NOT a bad leadership summary, at all, and it works in business! OH yeah, don't forget endurance! Great leaders get there early and leave late!

Chris Irish Listening to differing views and then making a decision and accepting responsibility.  Trustworthy, they follow through and offer transparency to those they work with and for.

What would you like to add?

Tom Costello is a business owner, consultant, and author whose career encompasses more than 20 years of experience in the hospitality and travel industries that includes startups, strategic business planning, P&L management, branding, sales, marketing, social media, e-reputation management, technology development, channel distribution, vendor and third-party relations. As the Principal of Groups International, a meetings and events management company, Tom drives the strategic growth of the company in the areas of sales, marketing, brand image, social media, and vendor relations.

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