What makes a great leader?

by | 21.09.2016

Good leaders are passionate, innovate and have the highest quality standards; three things at Quinyx we believe are imperative for good business.

Last week HRH Prince Daniel visited Quinyx’ headquarters in Stockholm to discuss the Prince Daniel's Fellowship initiative, entrepreneurship and meet with Quinyx’ employees.


Erik Fjellborg, Quinyx’ founder and CEO, is a member of Prince Daniel's Fellowship, an initiative aiming to inspire and support young entrepreneurs, and this was the reason for the visit. The most successful entrepreneurs are often some of the most successful leaders which caused us to ask the question: “What makes a great leader?”


In a recent interview, award-winning author and TedTalk alumni, Simon Sinek, said this: “Every single organisation on the planet knows what they do. They know the products they sell and the services they offer.


“Some know how they do it, and how this differentiates them from others, but very few are able to clearly articulate why they do what they do. If you look at the greatest leaders, from Martin Luther King to Steve Jobs, those with the capacity to inspire action in those around them, every single one, regardless of their industry, talks about their vision, their goals and where they are going. What they do simply serves as the tangible proof of what they believe.”


And this is what a great leader does. They inspire, motivate and challenge their staff. They bring them together, unify them and drive them forward with a shared purpose.


In business, good leadership is one of the key drivers for success. Let’s say you’ve got a killer product, a great team and a fantastic service. All this can easily be undermined by bad leadership. On the flip side, strong leadership can help propel a company and a team from being good to being great. And it’s this greatness which will give your business the competitive edge.


There are a handful of natural leaders. For others, becoming a great leader requires time, patience and hard work. Here are some of the traits which the best leaders have:


Emotional Intelligence. Emotional intelligence, or EQ, is the capacity for empathy, gratitude and intuition. Good leaders understand people and can empathise with them, whether they are on the bottom rung or at the top of the ladder. Leaders know what words to use and when to use them. They have an innate understanding of when someone needs to hear words of praise or needs additional motivation.


Inspiration. The best leaders inspire. They inspire by their words, their actions and their vision. Inspirational leaders keep morale high, are the foundation for culture and sow the seeds for a positive and productive working environment.


Focus. Tim Ferriss, author of The Four Hour Workweek and host of The Tim Ferriss Show says focus, and having the discipline to not be distracted, is the secret to great leadership: “It’s been said that leadership is making important but unpopular decisions. That’s certainly a partial truth, but I think it underscores the importance of focus. To be a good leader, you cannot major in minor things, and you must be less distracted than your competition. To get the few critical things done, you must develop incredible selective ignorance. Otherwise, the trivial will drown you.”


Authenticity. A great leader has to be authentic. They must believe in their vision and their goals. They must be the embodiment of their company’s ‘Why?’ - that’s to say they must love what their company does and be passionate about achieving it.


The more effective great leaders are at communicating their ‘Why’ the more talented people will want to work for them and the more successful their company will be. At Quinyx, we specialise in helping leaders and managers grow stronger by providing them with the solutions they need to better understand all aspects of their business. We give them knowledge of their core business functions so they can understand how their business works, how to drive it forward and how to make the best decisions.

 

Tommy Tonkins

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