Want to be a better leader? Industry experts reveal their secrets

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Being humble, tolerant and innovative are the three main qualities that professionals believe are key to becoming a successful leader, according to new research conducted by GISMA Business School.

GISMA spoke with some of the UK’s most successful business leaders to find out what they believed the best leadership qualities to be; according to those who have already mastered the skills.

Those questioned by GISMA shared that, in their experience, the top five traits that make a good leader are:

1.     Having patience

2.     Being respectful

3.     Being inspiring

4.     Having a clear vision

5.     Being observant

“Effective business leadership demands a captain of the ship, not just someone who’s standing by the helm,” said Leadership and Business Coach, Helen Packham.

“Having helped entrepreneurs and employees stand out as leaders in their field, it’s important to have courage, take risks, and stand up for what you believe in, even if that polarises opinion,” she added.

Speaking about his experiences, Founder and CEO of The Formations Company, Piers Chead, added: “It’s important to understand your space and the people within it. A good leader will always take a step back to observe a dynamic before diving in and getting their hands dirty. The better you understand your environment, the more effective you’ll be at tackling tricky situations.”

The research also revealed that good leaders should aim to develop continuously, as well as having the willingness to learn and admit when they are wrong.  

This is something Daniel Rowles, CEO at digital marketing training company, Target Internet, believes has been vital to his success. He commented: “From my perspective, the most important thing has been learning from every failure and success. If you can’t learn in this way, you could easily go through your whole career without improving in any meaningful way.” 

Speaking about the findings, Dr Steve Priddy, Dean of GISMA Business School said: “Good and effective leadership creates a better work environment for all. Setting an example as a great leader helps others to see what skills they need to also be successful. True leadership is about taking people to places they would not (or could not) go on their own, and achieving that level of loyalty and dedication is next to impossible without a genuine allegiance inspired by true leadership skills.

“There are always ways to learn more and enhance your leadership skills, and we hope these suggestions will help inspire business professionals to revaluate their leadership abilities, and address areas they feel may require development.”

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