You may be a leader in an organisation or you may be led by someone else, possibly both.

But the characteristics of leaders are very important to the success of teams and organisations across the world.

A very interesting piece of research

James Kouzes and Barry Posner have conducted ongoing research for over 25 years, across 6 continents to see just what people are looking for from their leaders.

This has involved well over 100,00 people from around the globe.

When asked which qualities they most look for and admire in a leader, 4 have come to the top consistently year by year:

–    Honesty
–    Forward looking
–    Competent
–    Inspiring

important characteristics of admired leaders

What do the words mean to you?

You may well have your own interpretation of what each trait means to you.

For me I would describe them as follows:

Honesty – Doing what you say you will do, modelling the behaviour you ask of others, never deceiving and being authentic and true.

Forward thinking – Working with others to create a clear direction for the future and to always be anticipating big changes.

Competent – Building the necessary skills to lead effectively, from communication skills to planning.

Inspiring – We published a blog on inspiration and motivation recently (see here). As a leader though this means having passion for what you do and letting your heart come through in your role. You will inspire others if you show passion, clear direction and importantly appreciation for what they do.

What do you think?

What do these words mean to you? What does it mean for you if you are a leader? What other traits do you feel are important too?

It would be great to hear your thoughts and opinions.

Finally, if you feel you need any help in developing your leadership characteristics and skills please feel free to call us on 0115 903 3133 or email at and we can discuss how we can help you in any way.