Established, since 1997, leading UK based training provider.

Common Characteristics of a Leader

Common characteristics of a leader

Common characteristics of a leader

All leaders have common characteristics that mark them out as leaders.

The characteristics are independent of the particular industry or the market sector: the characteristics are those that distinguish the leader from the non-leader. If you want to improve your leadership skills then do the following:

  1. Consider numerous specific examples of great leadership: Churchill, Ghandi, Lincoln, Napoleon, Thatcher, Bill Gates etc.
  2. Identify the distinguishing characteristics that are unique to leadership.
  3. Name them and make a list.
  4. Memorise the list.
  5. Practice the "distinguishing characteristics that are unique to leadership" for long enough to make them a part of your habitual patterns of behaviour.

To help you in your quest I have done the first three steps for you.

Your job is to take the last two steps.

Create a strong desire to achieve a specific goal

To all leaders, this characteristic is the most important.

All leaders ARE leaders primarily because they have committed themselves to achieve a definite goal:


  1. Spartacus wanted freedom for his slave army
  2. J.F. Kennedy wanted to put an American on the moon
  3. Ghandi wanted freedom from the British
  4. Margaret Thatcher wanted to reinstate free market capitalism in place of Labours socialism
  5. Marin Luther King wanted freedom from racist America
  6. Karl Marx wanted to reinstate socialism in place of free market capitalism

All leaders want to lead their followers somewhere!

Leadership Training - The Effective Leader Manager Leadership and Management Training Course Logo

Leadership Training - The Effective Leader Manager

As the team leader or manager, you know that, on the technical level, you are very good. In your role as an effective and inspirational leader-manager, you recognise that there may be some gaps. Now you are searching for a method to help you to improve your skills as a team-leader and manager - click here to find out more!

An apathetic leader is a contradiction in terms.

If you want to develop your leadership qualities then mentally lock onto a worthwhile and specific goal.

The leaders are good communicators

You can't lead if nobody will follow!

So most leaders are also good communicators.

They work hard to develop their communication skills; both spoken and written.

  • Churchill was a great communicator
  • Tony Blair too, had the gift of the gab
  • So too, does David Cameron

Question is Ed Milliband a great orator? ....... or not?

Develop your ability to handle the English language

Improve your command of the English language

Plan ahead

Most leaders are good planners

They spend hours planning and preparing.

They don't hope that things will happen; they make sure they will happen

"Reduce your plan to writing. The moment you complete this, you will have definitely given concrete form to the intangible desire." Napoleon Hill, Think and Grow Rich

"When defeat comes, accept it as a signal that your plans are not sound, rebuild those plans, and set sail once more toward your coveted goal." Napoleon Hill, Think and Grow Rich

Become an incessant planner

Maintain a sense of optimism for the future

All great leaders expect to win.

There is no greatness to be found in people who begin expecting to lose.

Leaders who expect to lose, lose.

The trick is to create a thought habit of expecting success.

Manufacture positive expectation even in the absence of tangible evidence.

The self-belief is built upon the detailed written plan, not the evidence of the senses.

Example even in the darkest days Churchill spoke of winning

"You ask, what is our aim? I can answer in one word. It is victory."

All leaders have self-belief and confidence based upon sound plans.

Develop courage

The last factor I want to add to your list is courage. All leaders must have sufficient courage to take on the responsibility of assuming the role of leader

Courage is that state of mind that enables you to face fear situations with confidence, and resolution.

"You will never do anything in this world without courage. It is the greatest quality of the mind next to honour". Aristotle

Ronald Reagan said "There are no easy answers' but there are simple answers. We must have the courage to do what we know is morally right.

Remember that courage is the first of human qualities because it is the quality which guarantees the others".

If you want to improve your leadership skills then do the following:

  1. Create a strong desire to achieve a specific goal
  2. Improve your command of the English language
  3. Become an incessant planner
  4. Maintain a sense of optimism for the future
  5. Develop courage

For more information about Leadership skills training visit the Corporate Coach Group website

FREE eBook - The Effective Leader Manager Free ebook download

Download 'The Effective Leader Manager' FREE eBook

This short eBook will teach you some of the secrets of leadership, including communication, handling difficult people, planning and motivation. Receive your free ebook straight to your inbox, with our compliments - click here to download.

Blogs by Email

Do you want to receive an email whenever we post a new blog? The blogs contain article 5-10 minutes long - ideal for reading during your coffee break!

Your Comments

Further Reading in Team Leader and First Line Manager

  • Communication styles for leaders
    Communication styles for leaders There is a strong correlation between leadership and excellent communication skills, meaning; that almost all great leaders are also known for their ability to communicate effectively. Examples of this type are many: Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King, Gandhi, Napoleon Bonaparte, Winston Churchill, Barack Obama, Margaret Thatcher, and...
    Read Article >
  • Train to be a better manager
    How to be a better manager Question: How can I train myself to become a better manager? Answer: You can attend a training course that will teach you the specific skills you need to develop in order to become a better manager. Question: What are the specific skills I need to...
    Read Article >
  • Effective time management training
    Effective time management training Time management is the art of organising yourself so that you are more able to make more progress in less effort and time. In other words, time management is a measure of your efficiency. Time management is important to you because the truth is; you are not...
    Read Article >
  • How Can I Motivate Staff?
    Some people use threats and punishment to motivate staff, but praise and appreciation are one of the best ways to motivate staff.
    Read Article >
  • Good People Skills
    Good People Skills One of the most valuable skills you could develop is good people skills. You need good people skills for a very specific reason. If you are to achieve your goals in life, then you'll need to gain other people's cooperation. If you want to do anything really impressive...
    Read Article >