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Attributes of Great Leaders

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After evaluating and interviewing 70 chief executives, Adam Bryant wrote a book titled The Corner Office: Indispensable and Unexpected Lessons from CEOs on How to Lead and Succeed. In it, he describes 5 attributes that great leaders share. What’s especially interesting is how these qualities are not genetic, but can be developed and applied by individuals in any company.

Passionate Curiosity
Great leaders are passionately curious about what they’re doing. They share stories, ask big picture questions, wonder why things work the way they do and try to find ways to improve upon them. At the end of the day, a leader is a student of human nature who seeks to fulfill a need or a problem with a passionate spirit.
Battle Hardened Confidence
Everybody deals with adversity, but how you respond to it determines your level of success as a leader. Adversity should not bring you down; it should motivate you to get back up. The more you put yourself out there and try to improve, the more confidence you develop. Successful people make mistakes, but they own their problems and try to solve their problems.
Team Smarts
Great leaders know their role as part of a team. They are reliable, they make plays, and they have can see clearly what’s happening around them. When people see that you’re playing with them rather than against them, they’ll respect you as a leader. You have to be a team player with everyone you work with.
Simple Mindset
Great leaders should have a simple mindset.  Whatever you’re trying to communicate, don’t waste time getting to the point. Life moves so quickly in business that you can’t afford to let complexity bog you down.  The more succinct you can be, the better you will be able to achieve your goals.
Fearlessness
Leaders should feel comfortable when facing challenges. Things are always changing, and successful leaders should embrace a little discomfort that in the end will allow them to adjust and improve. A leader whose mindset is completely focused on success doesn’t allow fear to enter their mind.
Published: July 22, 2013
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