Top leadership qualities

A company's success significantly depdends upon the leadership abilities of its managers. Those in the top position who want to competently lead employees need leadership qualities. Some of these leadership qualities can be learned, while others are character traits. A requirement for leadership skills is having a natural sense of authority and feeling comfortable in a position of leadership, as only then will your employees trust you and allow you to lead. The following describes the ten leadership qualities deemed most important by recruitment consultants and psychologists:

1. Communication

The ability to communicate is deemed an important leadership quality by many. That is no surprise, as a large part of a manager's job involves communicating content and strategies internally and externally. However, this flow of information may not be one-sided, since good bosses always have an open ear for their employees' concerns. Successful communication requires a diplomatic touch-this too is an important leadership quality.

2. Set a good example

Leaders also function as role models, as bosses are always being observed. Supervisors who need something from their employees that they themselves won't do quickly lose their credibility.

3. Readiness to take on and give up responsibility

Someone has to be the one to make decisions and assume responsibility, and that person is generally the boss. However, leadership skills can also be seen as an ability to surrender responsibility and to delegate tasks. Those who pass responsibility on to their employees motivate them and ensure their loyalty.

4. Motivation

Motivating employees, inspiring them, and fostering enthusiasm for projects is one of the most important leadership qualities and a key to success because only motivated employees are good employees.

5. Recognise and foster potential

Managers with leadership qualities have a keen sense of how people tick: they recognise special abilities and know how to use them for the company. Instead of being scared of potential competitors, such managers encourage talented and motivated employees to transform them into new leaders.

6. Tolerate mistakes

Mistakes happen, and no one is immune. But one learns from mistakes. Thus, as the boss, you should show a certain degree of tolerance for mistakes. Instead of getting angry and criticising, you should work together to analyse mistakes so that they are not repeated. Employees who are afraid of mistakes and of their supervisors cannot work effectively or freely.

7. Flexibility

Supervisors must be able to adjust their leadership style to suit the situation. This requires flexibility and intuition.

8. Set goals and expectations

Employees can only work in a goal-oriented manner when you clearly explain what you expect of them. Those who give their team challenging tasks with clear, realistic deadlines can expect good results.

9. Self-reflexion

Everyone has strengths and weaknesses, even supervisors. The more aware you are of your own abilities and the more open you are about them, the more successful you will be as a leader.

10. Authenticity

Even when you are the boss you should be yourself and find your own individual style of leadership. Those who pretend to be something they are not or hide behind their role of supervisor come across as unauthentic and over time will not be successful leaders.