Leadership is a topic that always can activate some very strong opinions. I have studied leadership and have read and listened to how many experts define leadersip. It is indeed an intereting and complex topic.

Over the years, I have developed my own spin, my own 7 qualities a leader must have, must possess, must be. I’d like to share these with you so here we go:

Doug Evans’  Seven Virtues a Leader Must Be:

1) Be Brave- The leader guides the ship, determines the direction to travel and where to commit all resources. New gound needs to be plowed and you control the direction of the plow. It is a leader’s job to also slay the naysayers that will try to block the way.  It is important for the leader to wear big cleats, to dig in and make the tough decisions that will always be followed by negative fall out. If everyone is happy, it wasn’t a big enough decision.

2) Be Honest-Have those you lead follow your actions more than your words. Admit when you screw up with the simple words–I screwed up ! Practice answering-I don’t know but I’ll find out !

3) Be Flexible- Once you jump in and take action, it is very common to find a better way or direction. Be ready to shift gears as you need to. Understand those you lead may come up with better ideas than you have. Be humble, accept those new ideas and thank them for their insight. Also, remember the world is ever changing. What you plan rarely is the total plan “down the road.” Be ready to react and adjust as you need to.

4) Be Able to Communicate- It is an art, but use the right words, at the right time, in the right tone with the right energy ! Be in touch with those you lead and what they need. Everyone on the same page avoids many negative issues that could develop.

5) Be Able To Read- Read those that are on your team. What do the comments, emotions being displayed and actions they take say to you ? Are you in tune to the “karma” that will make or break the goals in hand ?

6) Be a Visionary – What does you team need to do NOW, what is the long term goal and what steps fit in between. Have a plan and know the full picture. This is up to you !

7) Be Reflective – Take some quiet alone time. Ask youself if you know what benchmark you are at and which benchmark you are currently seeking. Are your group’s actions within the vision you are leading? Finally, challenge the direction, the path you are following constantly. Keep searching for better ways to accomplish the quest you lead! Be at peace with yourself, your followers and your direction.