Become a Leader That Everyone Respects: 5 Key Traits You Need to Know

Sep 7 / Helen Bryant
As a leadership coach, I've had the privilege of witnessing the remarkable transformation that occurs when leaders are genuinely respected by their teams. This mutual respect translates into better collaboration, increased buy-in, and the successful achievement of goals. 
But what does it take to become a leader that everyone respects? In this article, I'll reveal the five key traits that I believe are crucial to becoming a respected leader. Plus, I'll share practical tips on how to weave these traits into your busy daily routine.

Trait 1: Clear Vision 

The very first trait of a respected leader is having a clear vision. After all, if you're not certain about your direction, how can you expect your team to follow? As a leader, it's your compass guiding you and your team towards a shared destination. 
It's all about asking yourself important questions like, "What's our vision for the next year?" and "What strategic steps should we take to get there?" It’s about making choices and prioritising in order that your team can work at its optimal level.
Don't forget to schedule regular "think and plan" sessions on your calendar. Effective time management and strategic planning are essential to achieve this.

Trait 2: Clear Communication

The second essential trait of a respected leader is clear communication. Picture this: You're the conductor, and your team is your orchestra. It's your responsibility to make sure everyone understands their part in delivering the grand performance ahead.
One way to ensure this harmony is by hosting regular team meetings. These gatherings provide the ideal platform for sharing updates, answering questions, and fostering understanding.
Outstanding leaders also prioritise One-on-One interactions. By dedicating time to connect individually with each team member, you ensure they're working on high-value tasks and provide them with the guidance and support they need.

Trait 3: Empathy and Emotional Intelligence

Empathy and emotional intelligence are the third cornerstones of respected leadership. 
It's about stepping into your team member's shoes, seeing the world from their perspective, and creating a supportive environment. Leaders with high levels of respect know they do not need to know all the answers but ask the best questions so that they and their teams understand any given situation well and people feel free to share their views. Remember, it's not about always agreeing but rather understanding where they're coming from.
Practising empathy can be as simple as actively listening to your team members. When they know they're being heard, trust and collaboration flourish.

Trait 4: Resilience and Adaptability

Resilience and adaptability are your companions in the unpredictable journey of leadership. Challenges and setbacks are par for the course, but what matters is your ability to bounce back. 
Concentrate on what you can control—your attitude and your response to adversity will be seen by and influence everyone around you. 
Also, look for where and who you get your personal support from. The best leaders have a network of support that helps them manage the stresses of leadership. Whether it be a personal coach, a network or a friend, they know they do not have to do everything on their own.

Trait 5: Self-Awareness and Continuous Learning

Last but not least, the fifth key trait of a respected leader is self-awareness and a commitment to continuous learning. To lead effectively, you must be aware of your strengths and weaknesses, constantly evolving and growing.
Seek feedback from your team members and colleagues as a valuable tool for self-awareness and personal development. Have a live personal development plan that you actively review to keep your learning front of mind.
So that is five essential traits that can pave your way to becoming a leader everyone respects. Embrace these traits, weave them into your daily routine, and you are well on your way to becoming respected as a leader.

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