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Life Mantra
Anu Goel
Ten effective leadership skills 28 January, 2017
A leader is a person who leads or influences a group of people towards a particular goal. But, there is a lot more to leadership than a mere definition. Every person has a different perception of what qualities should a leader inculcate.
For some, a perfect leader inspires and motivates everyone along the way to achieving their goal. Whereas for others, an ideal leader should epitomise humility and lead by example. A good leader should not only preach but also practice what is right even when it does not abide by the popular opinion.

An effective leader has the zeal to pursue a cause bigger than him with all that he has got.

To some extent the old adage, “Great leaders are born, not made” does stand true. However, people can always strive to be better leaders by instilling in them certain desirable traits, which ensure better leadership skills.

Here are a few of the characteristics that many great leaders possess:

1. Confident but not arrogant
To err is human, as Shakespeare rightly said. A confident leader does not consider mistakes as an attack to shatter his ego. An arrogant leader, however, is not exactly open to a difference of opinions. He will look past you. A leader’s arrogance can stir up trouble for himself also. Stay humble, not arrogant.

2. Effective communication skills
Communication is the key to attaining the perfect connection with your fellow workers. There should be plenty of two way communication channels to ensure everyone gets heard without feeling left out. They have a knack for inspiring and motivating people by sending the right messages.

3. Responsive to other’s needs
Efficient leaders understand their employees’ needs and work towards the welfare of all of them. They try to be empathetic and think themselves as being the guardians of the organisation. They are also very sensitive and know the team’s priorities inside out.

4. Determined
Great leaders do not rest until they have gotten whatever they have laid their eyes on. They see things through. Also, they align their actions in such a manner that they lead directly to the goal they wish to achieve. Giving up easily is not coded in their DNA. When the going gets tough, the tough get going.

5. Creativity
One has to think out of the box to come up with effective strategies that will help make dreams turn into reality. That is where creativity comes into play. Rather than going down cliched paths, a good leader will come up with new and better ways to attain perfection. Creativity also drives out boredom and monotony.

6. Planner
Someone who can help a team plan and organise well in advance to be ready for their goals can be deemed a great leader. Good management and effective delegation of work are the mark of a leader. One should plan ahead, using analytical thinking, to be ready even for the unexpected.

7. Knowledgeable
How can a Captain guide a ship through storms if he doesn’t know the seas like the back of his hand? Likewise, a good leader should well-read and thorough with the domain of his work. Every leader is a learner. He learns from his mistakes and other’s success.

8. Self-assessment
“Know thyself” is the motto to follow. Examine your strengths and weaknesses. Practice on those traits which need attention. Attempt to assess and reflect on your capabilities.

9. Decisive
A decisive leader takes everyone’s opinions into consideration but ultimately, he’s the one who calls the shots. He shall first gather information from all credible sources, weigh the pros and cons and then act on it. An indecisive leader sends mixed signals to his team thus testing their faith. A decisive leader need not be dictatorial, he can also lead collaboratively.

10. Honesty is the best policy
An effective leadership should not only be honest to his team members but also stay true to himself. Honesty and ethical treatment form the cornerstone for any good leadership. Traits such as honesty, integrity help form the basis for a trustworthy and healthy relationship between co-workers. It lends to the credibility of a leader and his actions.

No matter what sort of organisation one may be working in, there is always scope for one to become a better leader. By inculcating in yourself the mentioned leadership skills, you can get on the path to becoming a better version of yourself.

The article is jointly written by Anu Goel (Counselling Psychologist) and intern Bhavleen G Singh
Editorial NOTE: This article is categorized under Opinion Section. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of In case you have a opposing view, please click here to share the same in the comments section.
About The Author
Mrs. ANU GOEL is a Counselling Psychologist. She has practiced in Mumbai for 5 years, and is currently practicing in Delhi since the last 7 years. Goel, who can be contacted at 9313320146 and, is a member of the Counsellor's Association of India, and has been a guest speaker on several occasions.
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