Experts agree that there are a few fundamental characteristics of successful leaders. They notice in the workplace what academic research points out: These qualities are desirable in all employees and others who are in a position to help your business. These key attributes should no longer be reserved to official leaders.

Leaders take a long-term view. Certainly, from time to time they may set aside a grander view to complete a project on time and on budget. Largely, however, leaders balance schedule and quality with people’s needs. They understand how retention and engagement serve the organization as well as its employees.

Leaders see the big picture. They grasp how actions by one can affect many others. They also inspire others to think beyond their current domain of responsibility and gain a working knowledge of the greater system in which they work. This way, leaders inspire the leadership mindset in others.

Leaders provide vision to unify people’s actions and to inspire their actions. By being consistent, they also help align all work decisions. A clear vision permits people to act innovatively, because they have aligned their view and goals with the larger system.

Leaders delegate, but they don’t stop there. They also provide support and necessary resources while avoiding micromanaging and abandonment. Among colleagues, the person with leadership qualities is supportive and encourages bold, reasoned choices and actions.

Leaders motivate; they rally emotional energy in teams. They motivate through personal connection and through sharing the image of a total system. They understand that emotional energy can be fueled by vision and clarity.

Leaders are inclusive. They engage diverse interests and activities by establishing goals and fostering a shared awareness. Here, their work is like the conductor of an orchestra, including an appreciation for the social aspect of a group endeavor.

Leaders are self-aware. They have a keen sense of their greatest strengths and growth opportunities, and they continuously work for personal and professional improvement. Also, to increase their self-awareness, they consistently seek feedback from those around them.

Leaders are resourceful; they know their system. They are skilled at maneuvering around yet complying with policies and procedures. They don’t give up until the right thing is done right.

These qualities in people who have some stake in your organization can lead to a surge in innovations and solutions: a lineup of expert support worth encouraging. The possibilities for achieving bold goals are endless when we access, expand, unite, and guide the collective energy within our organizations.   As a first step, I suggest taking a look at your total system to gain a better understanding of the unique potential throughout your enterprise.












DR. MARTA WILSON is the founder of The LEAP Enterprise, best-selling author, creator of the LEAP app, an industrial-organizational psychologist, and the CEO of Transformation Systems, Inc. (TSI). Marta has dedicated her career to leadership consultancy while serving as board member, author, catalyst, coach, mentor, researcher, speaker, trainer, volunteer, and fundraiser. With a passion to share proven strategies that drive client results, Marta has authored several business books including LEAP, Energized Enterprise, Everybody’s Business, Leaders in Motion and the Transformation Desktop Guide. Specializing in leadership effectiveness, Marta holds a Ph.D. and M.S. in industrial and organizational psychology from Virginia Tech and a B.A. in academic psychology from the University of Tennessee.