Although there is no exact formula for becoming a “great executive leader”, there are many common traits, strengths, and skills that the majority of great executive leaders possess. Learning how to acquire, develop and utilize these attributes can dramatically improve your career performance and help you to stand out among other executive candidates.
In order to set yourself apart and excel as an executive leader, you must be:
A Strong Communicator
Central to becoming a great leader is your ability to communicate. Not only must you be adept at communicating your thoughts, ideas, mission, needs, and goals, communication is also key to boosting team morale and productivity.
In addition to articulating your own thoughts, being a strong communicator is about listening and being receptive to the ideas of others. Great leaders do not come up with all new ideas themselves. Successful leaders will be able to seek out and identify great ideas from others, and so must create an environment of trust and encouragement.
A Skilful Networker
Networking is a difficult art to master, but those who do invest their time in building strong professional relationships certainly reap the rewards. Creating mutually beneficial relationships with clients, co-workers and search consultants can improve your personal brand image, endorse your leadership skills and help you advance to new leadership opportunities.
A Fast Learner
We all make mistakes, even great executive leaders. But when they happen, rather than shy away from the error, great leaders must take charge, and implement preventative measures and learn valuable lessons along the way. New ideas cannot flourish without the freedom to fail, but great leaders will be able to respond swiftly failure and avert crises.
An Approachable “People Persons”
To be considered a great leader, you must demonstrate sensitivity, compassion and understanding with those you work with regarding both personal and professional matters.
They must also present themselves as people of credibility and humility. Be open and honest in your communications, and be mindful of the line between self-confidence and arrogance. Those who can master this are far more likely to be respected and appreciated in the workplace.
A Calculated Risk Taker
Sometimes executives need to take risks in order to progress forward. Being able to accept responsibility and make decisive, strategic decisions and calculated risks helps to display confidence and leadership. Great executive leaders have courage in their convictions and are prepared to make those tough calls, when others are not.
If you would like to learn how to cultivate your own leadership style and advance your executive career, join this month’s complimentary webinar “What Makes a Great Executive Leader?”