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The 10 personality traits of a leader

The 10 personality traits of a leader

June 17, 2024

What are the personality traits that define a leader?

Human groups (companies, political parties, unions ...) are characterized by investing a lot time and effort in detecting and developing the leaders of the future . The importance in this point usually focuses on the detection of profiles with good potential in intellectual, communicative, and even physical attributes. This vision presupposes that there is a known number of personal traits that a leader must have, traits that have been well defined.

The personality characteristics of the leader

The characterization of the leader's abilities has been studied from personal tests and also by observing the behavior in group contexts. This line of study has managed to correlate almost all of the leadership traits .


Next, we summarize the ten most prevalent personality traits in people with great leadership capacity according to these investigations.

1. Communication skills

Communication must operate in two directions: express clearly and assertively ideas, instructions and opinions, as well as getting the message heard and understood. It is also typical of a leader the ability to listen and take into account all the opinions, individual and collective, that come to him.

2. Emotional intelligence

Researchers Salovey and Mayer (1990) initially characterized Emotional Intelligence as the "ability to manage one's own and others' emotions and feelings, to discern such feelings and to use this information to correspond with precise actions." The feelings mobilize the subject, which is why emotional intelligence is a key feature of the leader.


3. Ability to determine goals and objectives

The direction of a group requires knowing what should be the roadmap to guide it . In the absence of precise goals and objectives, the effort may be sterile, and the group may feel frustrated. The objectives must be coherent with the capacity of the group: it is not effective to establish unattainable goals.

4. Planning and development capacity

When the objectives have been set, it is essential to draw up a plan to achieve them. This plan must plan all the actions that must be fulfilled , the times, the people who will make them, the resources that will be used ...

5. Proactive self-knowledge

A good leader must be aware of their virtues and should get the most out of them . Obviously, he is also aware of his weaknesses, and he struggles to try to improve.


6. Self-development and assistance to peers

A leader is able to grow while helping others develop. To improve, you do not need to do it "defensively"; he is not a slave to his group role or his reputation . It helps the group grow by teaching others, delegating tasks and creating spaces for action and communication so that other people feel useful and valued.

7. Innovation

Will try to find new and better ways to carry out activities . This feature is fundamental in the context of a society that advances at a forced pace, with constant changes in technology, communications and high competitiveness.

8. Liability

He is aware that his position in the group gives him power, and know how to use it to benefit the whole . It is not selfish; Use your position to activate processes and energize potentials.

9. Information

A good leader must be informed. No corporation can survive without the presence of leaders who know how to handle information. Know the information processing, interpret it correctly and with astuteness and then use it in the most useful and creative way , it's a key skill.

10. Charisma

This last point is controversial. Some authors believe that the charisma feature has very different definitions, and depending on which of them is used, it will be a characteristic present in people with leadership skills, or not. And, in fact, it seems that there are even certain common facial features among the leaders.

Defining the concept as the ability to attract and cause good feelingsAs well as attract attention and be pleasant and empathetic in the eyes of other people, charisma is a crucial feature in a good leader. Charisma can be trained by socializing and showing a genuine interest in people. The charism is related to the absence of selfishness , a factor that is decisive when it comes to perceiving a person as a leader.

Bibliographic references:

  • Goleman, D. (2013). The power of Emotional Intelligence. Madrid: Editions B.

  • Molero, F. and Morales J.F. (2011).The leader and his group: current views of leadership. Madrid. Editorial Alliance.

  • Sánchez Vázquez, J. F. (2010). Leadership: theory and applications. Pontifical University Salamanca.


7 Essential Qualities of All Great Leaders (June 2024).


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