Have you ever wondered if the saying, “great leaders are born not made” is strictly true? There are exceptions to every rule and this is no different. Everyone has it in them to become a good if not great leader. All that differs from person to person is the will to do so. First, you need to know what being a great leader entails. You cannot become something you are unclear about. So, what makes a good leader?

There are several things:

A truly good leader is a genuinely good person; they have a strong ethical and moral core. They are honest, have integrity, and generally exemplify great character. Not to say leaders are not occasionally flawed, but a good leader will acknowledge his weaknesses and mistakes and work to eradicate them. People follow such a leader because they respect his character and opinion.

A good leader’s standards are very high. They do not vary according on circumstances and such a leader is committed to seeing that excellence shine throughout all areas of an organization.

Good leaders do not run around screaming their heads off in panic when things go wrong. They are organized and meticulous and will often have an organized backup plan. Even if they have not done this, they ride the crest of a crisis with grace, keeping their composure, and never taking their eyes off of the main objective.

A good leader can see the wood from the trees. He keeps his eye on the bigger picture while understanding how each tree plays its part in making up the wood. He makes it easier for his team to succeed by being able to break down the entire strategic plan into smaller goals that are specific, measurable, achievable, resourced fully, and time bound (SMART).

A true leader knows that delegation is not the same as abdication. While he will delegate his authority, he will never abdicate his responsibility. Ultimately, the buck stops with him and he will take the heat from any bad or misjudged decisions. Conversely, when things go right, a good leader does not hog the limelight and praise but instead shines it on his team that played a major role in achieving his goals.

Ultimately, the strength of a good leader lies equally in both his character and technical ability.

Your path to becoming a good leader will consist of acquiring not only those skills that will be needed to properly carry out your job, but also the character traits that will make people willing to follow you rather than feel that they have no option simply because you are the boss. Learn how to inspire and motivate people, listen to the needs of your team, and remember, you will only be as successful as their collective efforts.Learn how