Top 10 Traits of Great Leaders


What makes a great leader?

  • Is it a way with words or courage under fire?
  • Is it a strong hand and a soft heart?
  • Is it a formidable stance or an indomitable will?

All these things matter, of course. But I suggest that great leadership comes from within. I believe it’s forged in humility and visible in servant-hood. With this in mind, here’s what I consider the “Top 10 Traits of Great Leaders.”

  1. Great leaders can eye an acorn and envision the oak tree.
  2. Great leaders let values rule their calendars.
  3. Great leaders equip, empower and expect excellence.
  4. Great leaders use hindsight to fuel foresight.
  5. Great leaders know when to “reason with” and when to “empathize with”.
  6. Great leaders welcome ANY input that increases their effectiveness.
  7. Great leaders brave an issue before it escalates into an impasse.
  8. Great leaders proactively protect their team from despair.
  9. Great leaders know when to push their OWN “mute” button.
  10. Great leaders know when to reassess, retreat, recharge and return!

Now that you know what I think, I’d love to know your thoughts. Specifically:

Which of the Top 10 seems most important to you?

Oh yes, and what are a few I’ve forgotten?

8 Responses to “Top 10 Traits of Great Leaders”

  1. Great leaders are consistently kind.

    Great leaders know how to apologize.

  2. Christina Brunk June 18, 2013 at 9:31 PM

    Great leaders train their successors in preparation for their next challenge.

  3. Great leaders believe that the ride must be fun – for EVERYONE.

    For me, this one tops the list – Great leaders let values rule their calendars.

  4. Great leaders make decisions that will serve the greater good. He/she should have the heart for service.


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