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What Are the Key Strengths of a Leader? Part Two

Tuesday 21st Aug 2018 - Charan Sarai

The second part of our look at what make a great leader focuses on different leadership styles and key strengths to focus on.

We all have our own unique strengths and weaknesses, and reflecting on how we can improve ourselves and others is a vital part of being an effective leader.

Key Strength – Compassion / Empathy

Empathy is a foundational key to having a balanced approach to helping team members who may be struggling.  It can provide you with the opportunity to support them, recognising that investing time in their development is invaluable.

Challenges are good for leaders - not only for their own personal growth but also for the wider business. A good leader will review the training side strategically, recognising longer-term success is better than focusing purely on immediate success.

Daniel Goleman, Richard Boyatzis and Annie McKee identified six emotional leadership styles:

Visionary: Leads their team towards a shared goal

Coaching: Connects individuals' goals to those of the business 

Affiliative: Focuses on collaboration and creating emotional bonds 

Democratic: Seeks input and participation from the team to build consensus 

Pace-setting: Sets high standards and expects staff to emulate them 

Commanding: Expects staff to comply with their vision and maintains rigid control 

Each leadership style has a different effect on the emotions of the people that we are leading. Having the intelligence to adapt your leadership style will help you support your team members.


Key strength – Direction and Communication

A team approach to meeting goals and objectives is key in any business, understanding where individuals fit in and focusing on what needs to be done by each participant. Regardless of which leadership style is used, it’s very important that key messages are relayed and understood in order to move the business forward.

Key Strength – Delegating

Leadership and motivational theories work hand in hand to support leaders and I am sure you will use both in your role. An important element of this is delegating and empowering others – when we work together, great things can be achieved.

The successes of your staff will of course benefit the business and build their confidence as well, which in turn further empowers them. Remember that delegating to others can also strengthen your accountability skills as a leader.

Key Strength – Saying Thank-You

Psychologist Frederick Herzberg’s two-factor motivation theory states that there are certain factors in the workplace that cause job satisfaction, while a separate set of factors cause dissatisfaction.

I am a strong believer in saying thank-you for a job well done - it goes a long way with staff who so want to be appreciated.


My personal belief is that what makes a good leader is VIC - Vision, Integrity and Compassion.


Having a clear vision of what you want to achieve is vital. Think in terms of your business plan, your vision for your business and your people, and the changes you want to make – whether they are big or small.


John Maxwell states that leaders must do what’s right - not what’s popular: “There are really only two important points when it comes to ethics. The first is a standard to follow. The second is the will to follow it.”

Do you have your own version of VIC in your business? Remove any one of these elements of leadership and everything comes toppling down. Don’t forget to share your thoughts and ideas on leadership in the comments section below!

Are you interested in developing your practice leadership skills? Award-winning primary care training providers Thornfields’ accredited ILM3 and ILM5 courses covers all the essential aspects of managing your most valuable resource – the practice team.

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