How to develop leadership - who is a leader and what are leadership qualities?


Leadership is one of the oldest phenomena, the psychology of which people would like to understand. After all, leadership is most often associated with key figures on the chessboard of life. And it is on these figures that, first of all, the outcome of any party depends, since they are the centers of the entire system. Many people have a desire to become leaders and manage the system themselves, because by becoming a leader, we have significantly more opportunities and prospects, we gain access to more resources and bonuses. When becoming a leader, we make certain investments: first we work for the image of the leader, and then the image of the leader works for us.

Basic leadership qualities of a person - list

The modern world puts pressure on a person from all sides, demands from him a constant active position, the ability to think flexibly and diplomatically, quickly respond to changes in the situation, and act consistently and decisively.
Not all people are able to meet such stringent requirements, but it is enough for one group to have at least one such comrade. Usually it is he who shows the ability to take responsibility for the actions of the entire team and becomes a leader.

It is important to approach your public. The coach of a football team will need some skills, and the captain of a ship will need others. There are also general skills that are necessary in society.

Let's look at who a leader is and his main personal qualities on the list:

  • responsibility;
  • honesty and integrity;
  • willingness to take risks;
  • self-confidence and self-confidence;
  • desire to take initiative;
  • consistency in actions and decisions.

You don't have to be that kind of person to succeed in anything. But such a person has a much greater chance of achieving the desired result faster. Therefore, it is advisable to develop such skills in yourself; this will help in life and business. Let's take a closer look at them.


It's important to be confident in what you're doing. But at the same time, faith should not be allowed to be blind. You should adequately assess your abilities and the strength of the team, and build possible goals on this. The employee must demonstrate strong willpower and have good self-esteem. If a person is not confident in himself, then he will not be able to lead.

The goals set must be achievable; you cannot set unrealistic goals for people and wait for them to be completed. So quickly motivation will be lost, and the leader will no longer be respected and listened to.

Active position in life

You will always have to strive to be in the center of what is happening, to be close to the storyteller and constantly communicate with each member of the team. If you know the news and changes before everyone else, then it becomes possible to be one step ahead.

Moral willingness to take risks

You need to feel determined to take risks when necessary. You will have to do this quite often, but provided that it leads to positive changes. There is no need to rush into all adventures indiscriminately.

But you cannot stop because one of the actions led to negative consequences. You should carefully analyze mistakes and plan a new movement with adjustments to prevent repetition of mistakes.

Taking initiative

Without this characteristic it will not be possible to build leadership. You should be proactive, offer solutions to problems and non-standard ways for the organization to move. He is not afraid to step outside his comfort zone and start something fundamentally different. Such a person will not wait for everything to happen on its own.


He knows why he does his work, because he is motivated by the result or the process, and not always by salary. Sometimes it is a desire to conquer new heights, achieve a certain goal or change. He can motivate himself and the team equally.

Decent and honest

This is the basis without which it will not be possible to build good relationships with subordinates. Management that lies and behaves incorrectly will not gain authority among employees. Even small but frequent lies can destroy the trust of employees.

Consistent in actions

Such people do not just act, they follow a marked plan, are guided by it and compare notes, marking completed items. These are usually thoughtful lists that help you achieve success.


This is a required, basic ability. If a person is not able to be responsible for upcoming and past events, the company will fall apart. If he tries to shift responsibility to others, then his reputation will quickly be lost.

But personality is not everything. You also need to be an organizer, a diplomat and something else. Let's look at this in more detail.


A natural leader is motivated by power, efficiency and goal achievement. I have met many quite successful people in this regard. The love of power allows them to find a way out even in the most dead-end situations. But they are vulnerable precisely in this very power: as soon as they overdo it, people understand their intentions and turn away from them.

Every leader must be able to cope with difficulties; his success depends on it. Models of behavior that he consciously or unconsciously follows help him cope with difficult situations. I'll try to explain it in a not too abstruse way.

  1. Competitive model. This model is followed mainly by men. They constantly compete with someone in their actions. They are characterized by aggressiveness, dominance, charisma, egocentrism, and self-sufficiency. It is important for them to have more privileges compared to their subordinates, to differ from them not only in their status, but also in what they can afford.
  2. Cooperative. Such people are respected because they did not come to leadership through a “raider seizure of power.” They are communicative, intellectual, aimed at collaborating with everyone who will benefit the whole group. Most often, everything is OK in their personal lives, they are loyal to female and male leadership.
  3. Masculine. This is a type of competitive. The leader must be a man, although there are women too, but they are called “a man in a skirt.” They are competitive, sexy (there are only men here, this style does not suit women), dominant, aggressive.
  4. Feminine. This model only works if there are no other candidates for the position of manager. As a rule, these are women who were “thrown into the breach” for lack of other candidates. Such leaders have little ability to compete and dominate. They obey more, do not show aggression, and try to come to an agreement with everyone.

Managerial and organizational qualities of a leader

What a real leader can do:

  • Lead - all subordinates not only do the work, but also feel important and want to help the common cause. People listen to him and trust him; he attracts people with his own actions and ideas.
  • Organizational abilities - everyone is occupied with a separate part of the whole, there is no confusion and repetition of cycles. It is important to organize the team's actions, inspire and delegate.
  • Vision of the future - he knows in advance how any undertaking can end. We must clearly imagine the development of the matter and convey it in rosy colors to our subordinates. You should isolate the main thing from the little things and choose a course.
  • Moving flexibly and maneuverably is a serious skill in changing plans in a timely manner and making the right decisions. This type of planning should help you “go around sharp corners” and choose a safe path.
  • Diplomatic leadership - distribute tasks and communicate in such a way that people under your command enjoy working, and friendly relations are built with partners.
  • Ability to encourage - sometimes the most talented employees cannot get rid of the fear of completing certain tasks, this affects the overall goal and productivity, so it is important to have the ability to encourage all subordinates.

This person is obliged to withstand any stress and make his people believe that the goal will be easily achieved by common efforts. You need to be a person who knows how to conduct a constructive dialogue and take it in the appropriate direction.

Necessary personal qualities inherent in a leader:

  • sense of humor;
  • rationality;
  • imagination;
  • openness to new knowledge;
  • willingness to learn and change;
  • charisma.

It is important to skillfully manage your own group; this will require a combination of several personal and social characteristics.

Dedication to your work

The leader is persistent and proactive. He has a strong will, which helps him overcome all obstacles on the way to his goal. He is resilient and efficient even in force majeure circumstances. At critical moments, he is ready to take the initiative, so you can always rely on him.

Scottish journalist, founder of Forbes magazine B.C. Forbes wrote: “You have to pay for success. Almost everyone who has reached the top has worked harder and longer, studied and planned more diligently, sacrificed more, overcome more difficulties than those of us who have not yet risen.”

Psychological and social characteristics

This is the ability to build high-quality and trusting relationships within the team. The task of the “chief” is to fulfill his role and functions in such a way that relationships between people only get better.

What qualities of a modern successful leader should a manager have:

  • Communication skills – the ability to love communicating with staff, to find a common language with everyone, regardless of their role, position, gender and age. This helps strengthen the team's position.
  • Justice - not a single person will forgive injustice from his boss. All disputes and difficulties must be resolved in the correct way. Each group member needs confidence that he can turn to his superiors with any question and will receive a competent, honest and objective answer.
  • Teamwork - a real leader will have to defend the interests of his employees before higher or inspection bodies, external and internal, and protect them from threats and fines.
  • Creating all the conditions for realization and self-realization, he will do everything to make it convenient and comfortable for his staff to work, and for the company to work like clockwork. He provides training and provides everything necessary for the moral and career growth of new candidates for leading positions. For this, they are usually appreciated by the entire company team.

Learn to delegate responsibilities

A leader is not the one who takes on all the work, but the one who knows how to competently distribute responsibilities among subordinates. That is, you need to understand who can do what, who can be trusted with what, and so on. At the same time, it is necessary to ensure high-quality and timely control.

You need to develop this ability in yourself starting from the everyday level. For example, when planning housework, don't do everything yourself. Divide tasks among family members. When organizing an event (as in the previous example with a alumni meeting), shift some of the responsibility to those who most enthusiastically welcomed your idea.

Leadership talents of a manager

It remains to deal with several characteristics, without which it will be difficult for anyone to control the situation. It is important to develop them in yourself in order to take over leadership.

What is he like, the best leader:

  • knows how to monitor one’s own emotions, keep them under control and not show them;
  • punctual, is not late for work and arrives on time for meetings and appointments;
  • is able to persuade a partner or employee to do what is necessary for the development of the enterprise properly;
  • concentrates on the task and can organize everything to complete it;
  • thinks and communicates positively;
  • expresses thoughts clearly;
  • persistent, sometimes tough, but at the same time open to communication and new ideas;
  • charismatic, interested in results;
  • competently planning time - personal and subordinates.

Understanding the need to motivate staff

Motivating subordinates to work requires the ability to set clear, clear and achievable goals for them. They must imagine how they will complete the task.

At the same time, the work of staff should be appropriately encouraged, for example, with various bonuses and bonuses. Before demanding full dedication from subordinates, the manager must ask himself: “Would I work several times harder to increase my income by 2-3%?”

Publicist Mike Delany rightly noted: “In any kind of business or industry where both slackers and hard workers are equally rewarded, sooner or later you will find more of the former than the latter.”

Of course, subordinates must have a sufficient level of qualifications. Otherwise, it will turn out as American entrepreneur Jim Rohn predicted: “Motivation alone is not enough: if you have an idiot and you motivate him, then you will end up with a motivated idiot.”

Formal and informal leadership

In any team, two people can be formed at once, who will lead formally or informally.

The first type leads officially, in accordance with the job description and position. He does not always turn out to be pleasant for the department, and not in every case he can win the respect of the people to whom he assigns tasks.

The second type of commander arises independently, without appointment from the owner of the company. This is just one of the employees who can defend the interests of colleagues, make a proposal, and lead. They believe in him and follow him, they trust and consult him. But his opinions and decisions will be controlled by higher managers.

Informally, someone begins to lead if management begins to lead in an authoritarian manner. In this scenario, real bosses are perceived as tyrants, their appointments and orders are met with hostility.

If the company is managed in a liberalized or democratic style, then informal leadership arises occasionally. The authorities are not afraid, there is no need to defend their interests.

A leader masters the art of communication

If you are a leader, then you often have to communicate with other people. None of the problems can be solved without your participation in it. You will regularly hold face-to-face meetings, make calls to clients, and correspond with clients on a regular basis. It's worth noting that not all conversations will be pleasant. For example, accept the client’s negativity or inform a colleague about his dismissal.

You can ask any successful leader what skills are most valuable for success, and they will probably name communication skills, among others. For example, billionaire and serial entrepreneur Richard Branson called communication the most important skill a leader has.

Communication makes all processes smoother. Developed communication skills help to more effectively convey various instructions and details of tasks to employees. Communication also allows you to convey your mood and degree of importance through the tone of the conversation. Accordingly, communication is an objective and subjective means of influencing your listeners.

How and where to start developing communication skills

Email and chats are the easiest way to start improving your communication skills. In this case, you will have time to think about each proposal. If you start right away with telephone conversations or live meetings, it will seem too difficult. Dealing with your interlocutor’s objections during telephone conversations is much more difficult than in correspondence.

When speaking, pay attention to your wording and tone. Don't be afraid to experiment to find the right combination. Try not to speak to your interlocutor so quickly. This will allow you to think through your proposals. It will also make you appear more confident without going overboard. If you take it too far, you can look like a stoner.

Demonstration of leadership qualities

It is necessary to show your capabilities not only with words, but also with actions. Keep your gaze confident and firm, as is your position. Facial expressions and gestures are under control. Do not look away or hide during conversations. Treat your interlocutor only with respect, and do not raise your voice.

You should maintain your posture and appearance: both in clothing and in your entire image. Dress appropriately for your position. You should not come to a leadership position in a sweater with cakes or provocative makeup.

The essence of a leader’s personal qualities and its types

The desire to lead distinguishes a person who wants to take a higher place in life. All people have this desire, but most do not think about it or are not going to act, preferring to remain in their place.

Depending on the management style adopted in the company, there are three types of leadership. Let's take a closer look at them.


With this type of leadership, a person gets the opportunity to make decisions anonymously - the staff does not know who exactly gave this order. The completion of a task is often controlled by several superiors at once. He gets the opportunity to criticize, punish and deprive bonuses of those who do not meet the targets. All this does not add to his reputation and position among his colleagues.


  • often the decisions made turn out to be wrong, because the management is very disconnected from the real situation in the company;
  • employees are uninitiative and passive;
  • a dissatisfied and dissatisfied public;
  • It is morally difficult for everyone to work under subordination.

We advise you to use the style only in dangerous situations - in case of accidents or if there is a threat to human life. In this way, it is possible to suppress mass unrest, but if you constantly move at such a rhythm, it will end in the collapse and complete loss of motivation of the team.


There is no total control, but there is no clarity in planning. Punishments may be unpredictable.

Quite often, staff are not motivated, there is a tendency towards regression and loss of incentive. Employees are not happy with their superiors because they do not understand their actions and orders. The climate is not the most favorable, people influence colleagues negatively, there are constant squabbles and discussions behind their backs.


Here a person does not make decisions himself, he involves the team in the discussion. As a result, it turns out to solve several problems at once - people are interested in getting results, they understand why they need to act this way and what the difficulties of the path are. If you can turn work into a fully functioning organism, everyone will be motivated. Work activity is constantly stimulated and reaches new levels.

This is the most optimized and effective leadership model, but its implementation requires a true and professional leader, formal and informal at the same time. Psychologically, it’s easier for people to work this way, and management knows about all the difficulties and subtleties of reality.

A leader must be organized to set a good example for others

If the leader is not organized, then no one on the team will carry out their duties in an organized manner. A leader is constantly busy, so spending time organizing his own day may seem like an unnecessary detail to him. However, this is absolutely not true. Being organized is important not only for your own productivity, but also for your employees. The leader is an example for the entire team.

In the USA, a survey was conducted among office workers on this topic. The survey results showed that 75% of office workers associate a disorganized office with deeper problems within the team. If there are a lot of papers on the manager’s desk and a complete mess, then employees can associate this with the general condition of the company. It also provides an excuse for disorganization in their own affairs, which leads to productivity problems.

How to become more organized

You need to start spending more time on how you organize yourself. Try to imagine the ideal image, the ideal desktop. This is what we should strive for. Monitor your own productivity and spend 15 minutes a day planning.

What a leader looks like: main signs

It’s easy to identify such an individual – just look for the following skills in him:

  • the ability to influence staff and convince them that they are right;
  • awareness of everything that happens around;
  • have all the personal qualities for leadership;
  • desire to develop and learn new things, teach colleagues something;
  • the ability to organize people so that there is no confusion;
  • activity and desire to change something;
  • constant proposals to update and simplify the workflow;
  • sees the situation beyond the boundaries of the recognized norm.

There are no former leaders. If a person once held a position and took responsibility for the result, he will repeat this again, even without being in a leadership position.

Additional materials for this lesson

You can also read useful materials on leadership in the special “Leadership and Relationships” section of our blog. The topic of this lesson is complemented by the following articles:

  • How to Arouse Empathy in Others
  • SMART goals
  • Getting Things Done by David Allen
  • Time management or time management for leaders

Please also note that some test questions for this lesson, as well as for the leadership exam, are based on the material in the above articles. Now that we've covered some tips for improving your leadership skills, let's move on to the next lesson.

Now that we've covered some tips for improving your leadership skills, let's move on to the next lesson.

What functions does it perform in a team?

Any group of people is its own well-established system that cannot function normally without a leader. Why is it needed:

  • organizes the life of the department in all areas at once;
  • creates rules in which everyone will be comfortable working, then ensures that they are followed;
  • officially speaks with superiors on behalf of all people;
  • is responsible for the results of the activities of the entire public, monitors what the results will be;
  • Coordinates and modifies, as necessary, the tasks to be performed by a specific employee to achieve maximum productivity.

Article information

This article was co-authored by. Maureen Taylor is the CEO and founder of SNP Communications, a corporate communications company in the San Francisco Bay Area. Helping leaders, business founders, and innovators in all industries improve communication and feedback for over 25 years.

Categories: Personal Development

In other languages:

English: Improve Leadership Quality, Español: mejorar la calidad del liderazgo, Italiano: Migliorare la Qualità della Leadership, Português: Melhorar a Qualidade da Liderança, العربية: تحسين مهاراتك القيادية , ไทย: พัฒนาคุณสมบัติความเป็นผู้นำ, Français: améliorer les qualités de leadeurship, Nederlands: Leiderschapskwaliteiten verbeteren, 日本語: 指導力を改善する, हिन्दी: अपनी लीडरशिप क्व ालिटी में सुधार लाएं, 中文: 提高领导力, Bahasa Indonesia: Meningkatkan Kualitas Kepemimpinan, Tiếng Việt: Cải thiện ph ẩm chất lãnh đạo

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How to develop leadership qualities in yourself - a list of ways

It's not so easy to step up and become a leader if you weren't born one. This is work and work on yourself, and most importantly, the desire to change and change your life. It is not enough to be in good physical shape and health; a lot depends on your character.

What you should definitely do:

  • enroll in special courses where they will help correct all speech errors and incorrect diction - it is difficult to be a convincing speaker with defects;
  • read more, especially the classics - this affects conversation and vocabulary;
  • Every day, talk and argue with the mirror for 5-10 minutes - only the first few days it looks strange, then it helps to become more convincing.

You can enroll in a dance school or gym. This will help you get in good physical shape and add self-confidence. In addition, it relaxes and relieves emotional stress.

The business-result company will help you develop all the necessary abilities - we take a comprehensive approach to each task, help you identify the main and secondary goals, so as not to get scattered trying to do everything at once. We train managers and develop motivation schemes so that your team begins to reach any, even the most daring, heights.

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