The first responsibility of a leader is to define reality. The last is to say thank you. In between, the leader is a servant.

Before you are a leader, success is all about growing yourself. When you become a leader, success is all about growing others.

Successful leaders are the power and intellect behind their organizations. They are the visionaries charged with steering their brand around pitfalls. They must know when to seize opportunities and how to rally employees to work hard toward their company’s goals, Says Hirav Shah.

Effective leaders transcend the title of “manager” or “boss.” They have found a way to achieve the right combination of charisma, enthusiasm and self-assurance, with a healthy dose of luck and timing.

It may seem like some people are just gifted with these skills, but the truth is most leadership traits can be learned and sharpened with time and practice, Opines Hirav Shah, The Most Sought After Business Adviser & Strategist Of The Country.

You can begin building your success by developing these 10 must-have traits of a powerful and successful leader.

1.Passion and commitment

A great leader’s courage to fulfill his vision comes from passion, not position.

Passion and commitment go hand-in-hand and are displayed by driven leaders. As a leader, you should be passionate about the future and expected outcomes, though there could be some intermediate tasks that might not excite you as much.

Out of this passion comes the determination and commitment to draw out the best, not just in terms of results, but in the people that you work with.

2.Effective and strong communication

Everything that a leader does or aspires to do is lost if they do not make sure that those who follow are sharing the same vision and passion.

Effective communication with strong messaging are two simple tools that a leader has at their disposal to ensure that the team they lead is not left behind, but is with them and sharing the same vision.

3.Positivity and confidence

Have you ever had that friend or colleague who is very cheerful, and all of a sudden, no matter how you were feeling, you forget about everything in the moment and are caught in that cheerfulness? Of course, the same goes with the opposite.

The disposition a leader has in the room drives everybody else’s behavior to a large extent. A positive and confident leader not only stands like a rock for the team, but helps promote and dissipate the same reaction amongst the team.

4.Empathy and humility

This fourth trait is what pulls everything together for an effective leader who the team not only respects, but admires.

Good and effective leaders always make an effort to understand the human aspect of their teams. They don’t look at their team as resources, but see them as human beings, each having their own strengths and trying to balance their life and work in this busy world.

Out of this acknowledgement naturally comes humility and empathy – humility that though you are the leader, you are part of the team, and empathy that everyone is working on doing their best while balancing life.

5.Decisiveness

A good leader isn’t simply empowered to make decisions due to their position. They are willing to take on the risk of decision making. Every single person in a leadership role of any kind sometimes has to make difficult decisions. How you handle these decisions is one of the top leadership qualities. The ability to be decisive can mean the difference between getting through a tough time or crisis and folding under pressure. Decisiveness is a vital trait for an effective leader.

6.Self-Managing

It’s hard to manage others effectively if you can’t manage yourself. Self-managing means being able to prioritize your goals and being responsible for accomplishing those objectives. As an effective leader, you must be able to regulate your time, attention and emotions, while remaining aware of your strengths, weaknesses and potential sources of bias.

Exceptional leaders are adept at handling stress and balancing their personal and professional lives. But you must also remember the importance of compassion and be able to respond to people and events in an appropriate way. Remember to maintain self-control and discipline in your actions, though you should avoid becoming overly reserved or inflexible.

7. Strategic Thinking

A forward-thinking, open-minded approach is necessary for today’s leaders. Leaders must always be prepared to adjust their strategies to capture emerging opportunities or tackle unexpected challenges. Thinking strategically is an ongoing process that involves assessing your business environment. You can cultivate strategic thinking by:

a. Being curious and genuinely interested in your company and wider business environment,

b.Being flexible in your mindset and trying new approaches and ideas,

c. Focusing on the future and thinking about your company’s operational conditions, and

d. Maintaining a positive outlook.

8.Fostering Creativity And Innovation

Leaders must have the courage to risk experimentation and encourage creativity. Doing this will foster the innovation that will steer your organization to new destinations and around the twists and turns of a changing business landscape.

The key is to always be persistent in pursuing your goals, and open minded and flexible in how you get there. Encourage the people around you to spend at least 15 percent of their time exploring new ideas through brainstorming and prototyping.

9. Managerial competence

Too many organizations try to create leaders from people who are simply good at their jobs. To be clear, those who emerge as being very good workers often have important qualities. They are the ones who have a strong understanding of the company’s products and services. They understand company goals, processes, and procedures. All of these are important. Leaders need to also inspire, motivate, mentor and direct.
In short, managerial competence is a pivotal trait for effective leaders.

10. Vision and Purpose

“Good business leaders create a vision, articulate the vision, passionately own the vision, and relentlessly drive it to completion.”

Good leaders always have a vision and purpose. They not only visualize the future themselves but also share their vision with their followers. When their followers are able to see the big picture, they can see where they are heading. A great leader goes above and beyond and explains why they are moving in the direction they are moving and shares the strategy and action plan to achieve that goal.

Final Thoughts

Leadership is energy.
Leadership is passion.
Leaders are made, they are not born. If your actions create a legacy that inspires others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, then, you are an excellent leader, Hirav Shah Concludes…