I met a great bunch of leaders at the Common Purpose insideOUT event today. I was asked to put together a session on leadership aimed at stimulating some ‘thought and debate’ on ‘The Leader I Will Be’. I identified 7 things I’ve seen successful leaders do, and although this is obviously not a ‘complete list’ of key factors, I put them forward for ‘thoughts and ideas’.

The 7 things great leaders do are:

  1. Get That ‘Vision Thing’: Successful leaders create a clear picture of the future that stimulates, excites and inspires (both themselves and their people)
  2. Go For A Walk!: This is all about proactively creating time to think and work ‘strategically’ – that’s working ‘ON’ the business, not just ‘IN’ it.
  3. Remove Your Blind Spots: The best leaders actively seek feedback, and put themselves in situations that help them identify the things they’re not doing so well
  4. Play To Your Strengths: Winning leaders don’t try to be all things to all people – they recognise that they can’t be brilliant at everything – they work on their strengths and accept their ‘tolerable weaknesses’
  5. Engage Others: It’s about creating other leaders, not followers and maximising people performance at every level
  6. Fish In Different Ponds: This means getting out of your ‘comfort zone’, mixing with people ‘not like you’ and tapping in to new environments that you’re not familiar with (more information here)
  7. Challenge The Status Quo: Successful leadership is about questioning what’s going on, and encouraging others to do the same

You can download the slides from the presentation here, and download a simple assessment tool to help you evaluate how you ‘measure up’.

In the meantime – what do you think of the 7 key factors – do you have any key habits of successful leaders that you’d like to add? If so, please do so below