Being a leader is not a static role that you can master once and for all. It is a dynamic and challenging journey that requires you to constantly evolve and learn new traits.
What makes a good leader? Well, in my opinion a leader is someone who inspires others to follow a common vision and achieve a shared goal. To do this effectively, a leader needs to have certain traits that make them trustworthy, credible and influential.
A lot of leadership traits are universally desirable, such as integrity, vision, empathy and communication skills. These traits help leaders to inspire trust, motivate followers, align goals and foster collaboration. Other leadership traits are context-dependent, meaning that they can be beneficial or detrimental depending on the situation, the culture of an organisation. For example, charisma, assertiveness, risk-taking and creativity can be seen as strengths or weaknesses depending on how they are used and perceived by others.
Then, of course, there are those leadership traits that are generally undesirable, such as arrogance, narcissism, micromanagement and authoritarianism. These traits can undermine the morale, performance and well-being of staff, create conflict and resistance, and damage the reputation and credibility of leaders and their organisation. It is imperative that as a leader, you should be aware of your own strengths and weaknesses, and seek feedback and development opportunities at all times.
Within CareerWise, I always strive to be innovative and quality-driven in everything I do. I believe that these values are essential for our success in this competitive market. However, I also know that our people are the most important assets we have. Without their dedication we wouldn’t be able to deliver on our promises. That’s why I make sure to invest in their development, well-being, and recognition. I want them to feel valued and enjoy working within a dynamic team of professionals who share a common vision.
There is no definitive list of leadership traits, but I have outlined my top 6 below:
In truth there is no magic bullet when it comes to being a good leader but some simple changes can have a major impact on what we can achieve. Being a leader is not a static role that you can master once and for all. It is a dynamic and challenging journey that requires you to constantly evolve and learn new traits.
One of my favourite sayings is “every day is a school day”. We never stop learning, being a leader is not about having all the answers, but about asking the right questions and finding the best solutions, while always being open to trying new approaches.
Joe Robbins is co-founder of CareerWise Recruitment. A graduate of the University of Limerick (Degree in Business Studies, 1985), Joe worked in the UK for five years where he specialised in materials management, production management and plant management for a number of companies.
He returned to Ireland in 1992 to become Operations Manager for a Cork-based start-up, FMC Automotive Division which was subsequently taken over by Snap-on Equipment. Joe managed the business re-location of this company to Shannon in 1997 before setting up CareerWise Recruitment in 1999.
He is a committee member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) Mid-West region, and a former Director and Vice President of the Shannon Chamber of Commerce. Joe is former Chairperson of the Sixmilebridge Camogie Club and current Chairperson of the Clare County Camogie Board.
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