Written by David Knowles

You’re a human – lead like one

Let me ask you a question: are you a leader?

Okay, I’ll put it another way: Do you ever take charge of a situation? Do you help those around you? Do people look to you for guidance, an opinion?

If your original answer wasn’t yes, it must be now.

You see, we are all leaders.

Although it may not seem like it, we will each experience a time where we have to take control, offer advice and take responsibility. It is in these key moments that we can confidently assign ourselves as leaders; we have the answers and hold the knowledge needed to succeed.

Sir Francis Bacon said“Knowledge is Power” and it is the application of that power that separates the good leaders from the bad and ultimately, the good from the great.

So, what makes a great leader?

Inc.com break it down to the 10 following traits:

  1. Ambition
  2. Patience
  3. Humility
  4. Humour
  5. Vision
  6. Compliance
  7. Tolerance
  8. Courage
  9. Accountability
  10. Gratitude

Leading, by its very definition, is about showing the way and acting as a guide. So seeing qualities such as vision, ambition and courage will not surprise anyone. And nor, to my mind, will accountability and compliance.

But there are some qualities you may not have expected to see including humour, tolerance, gratitude, patience and humility. To me, these are very human characteristics. They are more about the values of the person and their ability to interact with people in a way that ingratiates themself on others and fundamentally, makes them likeable.

We choose our friends because we like them and what they stand for; a shared set of beliefs, values and ethics which bind us together.  If this is true of all relationships, surely the same should be true of those you work for and those who work for you?

So whilst it is essential to have a very singular, focused vision of what you want and have the ambition and courage to go out and achieve it, as a leader you don’t need to have the arsehole-like qualities which popular programming would imply you need to succeed.

You simply must be human, be likeable and most of all, be you…