The 4 Keys of Great Leadership

After a few months away from writing, I’m back.

Since my leave, I’ve welcomed a new baby girl into the lives of my wife and I, and have began a life changing transition at work. With these incredible milestones happening, the common question I’ve had to ask myself is: What separates good from great Leadership? Since the topic is so subjective, I did a lot of research. Below, is a compilation of the most common characteristics. Wrapped up in The Four Keys of Great Leadership.

Integrity.
Find your values from the start and remain consistent in exemplifying those values every day with every situation. This is the only way you will build trust for long-term effective leadership. Having integrity doesn’t stop with walking your talk, it’s about being honest with others in complete transparency, and not just being reliable but diligent in your actions.

Question to ask:
Do I perform in a way that makes people question if my actions are inline with my values?

Courage.
I’ve shared a little bit about courage and vulnerability in past posts, but this takes courage to the next level. Courage in leadership requires a willingness to take risks while remaining open-minded to the perspectives of others. It can sometimes be scary to speak up when faced with decisions that negatively impact your team members, but having the courage to listen to the backlash will allow your followers to understand that you’re in the trenches with them.

Question to ask:
Am I the bearer of bad news, and do I listen and stand up for my followers’ values, or do I send someone else into the trenches wearing my hats?

Authenticity.
An attribute that is most commonly forgotten. You’ve fought the good fight, but weren’t able to win this one for your people. That’s okay, because it’s now time to show your empathy through your well-intentions. Being truthful and sincere when it comes to providing negative criticism will display the authenticity in your leadership. Authenticity is more about recognizing your imperfections, owning mistakes, and having the teachability as a life-long learner.

Question to ask:
Do I recognize that leadership requires action ownership, and lift others up during times of failure or hardship?

Humility.
Great leadership is often most recognized in the most humble.

“It is humility that behooves us to remember that simplicity is the sign of greatness and meekness is the sign of true strength.”

Vince Lombardi

Be proud of your effort and humble in your accomplishments. Great leaders show their humility through a unique respect for others. The humble find pride in other’s accomplishments. They are realistic in their abilities, are always readily available to help others overcome obstacles, and rarely take credit for the contributions they’ve made on a collaborative team.

Question to ask:
Do I openly share the skills I’ve acquired along my own journey, and recognize that the work is attributed to by a collective and the only thing i can control are my actions?

There is no Key more important than another. They must all be exemplified to go from good to great leadership.

Key images credit:
http://www.graphicsfairy.com
sweetly.weebly.com (Edited by myself)

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