<img height="1" width="1" style="display:none" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=349935452247528&amp;ev=PageView&amp;noscript=1">
Search
word-map-thumb

The Alternative Board Blog

Essential Leadership Traits for Business Owners and CEOs

Jan. 3, 2019 | Posted by The Alternative Board
Leadership

What are the leadership skills that make managers successful?

Essential leadership traits are the key qualities of an individual that can be applied to a variety of situations where a better understanding of the problem and it's stakeholders will lead to a better solution. Whether they were “born” to become a CEO or whether experience “made” them ready for the job, anyone can become a leader.

Here are five essential leadership traits to cultivate in your own enterprise or realm of influence:

Emotional Intelligence.

The ability to “read” people and connect with them on an emotional level may be the most important leadership trait. After all, how can you expect your senior executive team and your employees to follow you if they don’t feel an emotional connection with you?

 Being able to accurately identify and manage other people’s emotions to achieve specific objectives and goals … is absolutely crucial for successful management,” Forbes notes. By nurturing your strength in this area, you gain “a clear understanding of how other people operate, including what motivates them to give their best.”

A Passion for Learning.

Great leaders never assume “I know everything.” For them, learning is a lifelong process—whether the subject is their own business and industry or acquiring new knowledge about themselves and how the world works. They set aside time to delve more deeply into how their companies operate, realizing “that even entry-level employees have something to teach leadership,” writes William Craig, an expert in company culture.

 “They’re deeply interested in the engine of the business and how to fine-tune it.”

Great at Communicating (and Listening).

Great CEOs understand how to communicate without getting lost in industry jargon or by puffing up their own egos. They make their message absolutely clear when addressing different stakeholders. They inspire and motivate—essential qualities of leadership, regardless of your business or industry.

Just as importantly, effective business leaders understand how to listen well. Learn to focus on what others are saying, as well as on how they express themselves in non-verbal cues and body language. You’ll become a better communicator precisely because other people feel like you’re genuinely interested in what they have to say.  

Want additional insight? View our BOSS Webinar on Servant Leadership on demand. 

WATCH

The Ability to Pivot.

Effective leaders make critical decisions, often on a daily basis. They’re adept at sizing up a situation, analyzing the pros and cons, and determining a course of action that keeps the business moving forward.

At the same time, it’s crucially important to step back from a situation after a decision has been made, review how well it’s going and (when necessary) pivot to another strategy.

To enhance this skill, don’t be afraid to “listen to your employees, embrace criticism and institutionalize feedback sessions,” notes Abrahami Avishai in
Entrepreneur.

And if you decide to move in a new direction, don’t look back: “When you decide to take a new path, it needs your full support and attention.”

Stand for Something.

One reason employees become disaffected by the business they work for is that they feel they can’t trust the leader’s word. He or she espouses one course of action, but moves in an entirely different direction. Or they commit to a specific policy initiative by a much-heralded date of implementation, only to have that date come and go with no changes at all. Gradually, this lack of consistency erodes the desired effects of leadership.

A strong leader stands for something. When he or she says they’ll act, they follow through on that action. People know they can trust the individual at the top, because he or she has a long track record of sticking to their word.

If you feel you’re lacking in one or more of these leadership areas, a genuine transformation in your skills is possible when you join a peer advisory group comprised of successful business leaders. Being able to hear situations where others have had similar problems and can help you through it is the quick path to learning.  It’s an experience that results in a more effective, well-rounded style of leadership.

Read our 19 Reasons You Need a Business Owner Advisory Board

DOWNLOAD

Written by The Alternative Board

Related posts

What to Tell Your Employees When Selling the Business
Jul. 29, 2021 | Posted by The Alternative Board
Selling a business is often a complicated process. One complicating factor for any CEO or business owner is determining what to tell employees about the pending sale, as well as when and how much....
A Guide For CEOs —11 Ways To Make An Impact In Your First 90 days
Jul. 13, 2021 | Posted by The Alternative Board
Your first 90 days as CEO will set the tone for your entire tenure in the organization. Therefore, this is a crucial time, and the goal is to establish your credibility and trust, so the team and the...
Tuna not Perch- Pursuing Significance
Jul. 13, 2021 | Posted by Jim Gerberman
It's hard to imagine a more difficult time for being an effective business leader. Correspondingly, finding significance in what we do has never seemed more fleeting...and, necessary. As we all...
A Guide to Finding the Right Peer Advisory Group For Your Needs
Jul. 6, 2021 | Posted by Phil Spensieri
As business leaders, we all know it can be “lonely at the top”. This is one of the key reasons that so many entrepreneurs seek out a peer advisory group - an organization whose main purpose is to...
13 Lessons In What NOT To Do In Your Business
Jun. 9, 2021 | Posted by The Alternative Board
There are many things successful business owners consciously steer clear of while going about running and growing their business. We asked 13 TAB members what they believe entrepreneurs should...
Let Employee Recognition Drive Your Culture
Jun. 4, 2021 | Posted by The Alternative Board
All businesses claim to value their employees and to be committed to a culture that recognizes and rewards employee achievements. But success in this effort may be elusive, particularly if employers...
14 Habits Of Highly Successful Business Owners
May. 21, 2021 | Posted by The Alternative Board
Success doesn't happen by chance. Highly successful entrepreneurs share many habits, and they often incorporate small practices into their daily routine. We asked our TAB members what habits have...
Use Your Company Culture as a Competitive Advantage
May. 18, 2021 | Posted by The Alternative Board
Every business needs a competitive edge, whether it’s in the quality of their products or services, their dedication to customers, or some other aspect they can leverage to outdo their competitors....
When the Time Comes to Fire a Family Member
May. 11, 2021 | Posted by The Alternative Board
Terminating an employee isn’t something business owners and CEOs relish. When the situation demands some drastic action, however, it’s necessary to follow through for the good of the business. The...
17 Essential Traits of Successful Entrepreneurs - Part 2
May. 10, 2021 | Posted by The Alternative Board
In our last post, we began to review 17 Essential Traits of Successful Entrepreneurs. Here we will continue looking at additional great tips from the TAB community.  #8 Endurance in the face of...