The basic description of “Leader” is “a person who rules or guides or inspires others” according to Webster and “the person who leads or commands a group, organization, or country,” according to Oxford Dictionary. The both descriptions are definitely correct and explain some typical characteristics of a leader. However, if we observe and try to realize the key differentiators of an exceptional leader, we can find out some major behaviours. I want to emphasize below the most important ones from my perspective;
An exceptional leader;
- Always creates a strong vision which is continuously used by the team as a guiding star,
- Can control his/her ego and demonstrates a consistent role model based on his/her own personal values,
- Knows and supports the key motivators of the team and each of the team members,
- Inspires and empowers the team,
- Enables each team member and makes them to discover their own dreams and potentials,
- Ignites the potentials of the team and motivates team members to get exceptional results by their own,
- Has a strong confidence for himself / herself and for each individual in the team,
- Builds a strong team spirit and maintains it as a key priority,
- Is always respectful for the personal differences of the individuals,
- Acts as a team member by demonstrating a friendly and approachable behaviour,
- Always uses open and honest communication methods and frequently shares priorities, goals and challenges with the team while motivating and supporting them to willingly contribute to joint success stories,
- Clearly takes all the responsibilities of the mistakes made by the team,
- Shares and celebrates successes together with the team.
Those are just some of the differentiators and I definitely believe there are some others depending on the personal style of the leader. But, I also believe, those differentiators are the common ones of many exceptional leaders in the history. Those exceptional leaders were able to motivate huge populations and they have changed the world forever.