How to Recognize an Effective Leader

Published: 17th March 2009
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How do you recognize an effective leader? This is a question asked over and over again, because leadership is always at the core of great historical moments. Leaders have led thousands during war, managed countries, and become heroes during times of disaster. Leaders have turned failing companies around and taken other companies to new heights of success.



But leaders are not always people performing acts recognized by the world. Instead they are often ordinary people able to motivate and inspire those around them to do their best. This is just one way you can recognize an effective leader. Many quietly do their job with self-assurance and the result is their departments, units or companies are successful through the efforts of staff working as a team.



Empowering and Inspiring



There are two kinds of power: formal and informal. Formal power is authority that has been assigned to a person. Informal power is authority which someone earns through their actions and is recognized by others but is not backed up formal authority.



In the business world, what this means is that a leader can be the designated manager or a member of a project team who has no formal power. Effective leaders can be found at every level of a staff structure. There are many common qualities and traits leaders possess innately, but they are developed and refined through training.



One of the first things you notice about a leader is their ability to empower others. An effective leader is able to motivate others to perform to the best of their abilities. A good leader understands the principles of delegation, and once a job is completed, gives the person respect for their accomplishments.



An effective leader will have most, if not all, of the following qualities.



* Able to provide clear direction

* Recognizes good ideas

* Holds people accountable while providing direction

* Able to delegate responsibility to most qualified people

* Gives feedback and encouragement

* Engages others in getting work done in a way they take responsibility

* Inspires others

* Able to handle conflict

* Able to see short and long-term

* Has integrity

* Good listener

* Able to problem solve



Long Term Leadership



It almost sounds as if an effective leader is a near perfect human being, but that's not true. Leaders make mistakes and make wrong decisions. But the difference between a leader that has the cohesive interest of the organization in mind at all times, and a manager who worries more about personal consequences, lies in the fact a leader accepts responsibility and learns from the mistake. An effective leader then uses the mistake to teach others so they can learn to be the leaders of the future. An effective leader puts mistakes behind him or her.



Effective leadership involves several principles. A leader must be able to strategically plan. A leader must be able to handle change which is always a quality in any enterprise. And a leader must be able to adapt changes in accordance with the strategic plan. In other words, an effective leader will keep staff and operations on course for a long term successful future.



Effective leaders within a company are best developed through training. A well designed training program can prepare the true leaders within an organization for a successful future within a business.



academy is a Registered Training Organisation, accredited to deliver nationally recognized corporate and traineeship training to a range of high profile and blue chip corporate clients. For more information, visit Management Training.

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