4 Virtues For Becoming A Good Leader

This article was a product of a presentation I did to a group of students who called upon me to speak to them on Leadership while holding their annual Seminar. I decided to publish it here because I feel that it can also do someone good online. In definition, we can say that Leadership is the ability to inspire and influence others towards a goal.  To lead is to inspire and influence others. It is important to note that every leader must have a follower. If there is no follower, the leader is just leading no one but himself.

Leadership involves for major things.

Establishing a clear vision
Sharing that vision with others so that they can follow willingly
Providing the information, knowledge and methods to realize that vision, and
Coordinating and balancing the conflicting interest of all members and stakeholders.

The above activities need to take place for there to be effective leadership. The leader will have to establish a clear vision, share it with others, provide the information, knowledge and methods to realize the vision, and manage the stakeholders very well.

For this to happen, the leader will need skills or what I call virtues to drive them. Every aspiring leader will need a number of virtues to become a successful one. One thing is to assume a leadership position, but another thing is to sustain that position. Any man that assumes a leadership position unprepared will suddenly meet a revolt from his followers. 

Out of the many virtues required of a leader, this article will discuss only four. I believe that this four which I am about to discuss here will no doubt go far in preparing anybody aspiring to lead other in nearby future. Now, what are those virtues for becoming a good leader? I shall now go ahead to discuss them below.

1. Knowledge

Proverb chapter 24 verse 5 says, “A wise man is strong; yes a man of knowledge increases in strength. Knowledge can be defined as acquaintance with facts, truths, or principles; as from study and investigation. From the definition, we can clearly decipher the sources of knowledge – study and investigation. Knowledge can be derived from research (investigation) which can be done using the internet. You can also obtain knowledge through studies, such as Newspapers, magazines, journals, etc. There is this popular saying that readers are leaders. Nobody that invests in reading that ends up an ordinary follower.

Therefore, knowledge is very essential in leadership. You need it to lead effectively. But you may ask what knowledge can do for you. Below are some of the things it does…
  • It commands followership – every leader has followers
  • It commands respect – people hold you in high regard because of what you know
  • It makes you an authority – knowledge turns you into a consultant
  • It commands wealth even – if knowledge can achieve the above for you, it will definitely translate to wealth.
2. Integrity

Integrity means doing the right thing at all times and in all circumstances, whether anyone is watching or not. Integrity determines your reputation. Everyone likes to deal with honest and trust worthy persons. To be a leader, it is necessary that integrity plays out. Any aspiring leader must:
  • Be a man of his own word 
  • Stand for honesty and nothing less, and 
  • Avoid double standard.
In the absence of this, leadership won’t be sustainable. People will freely follow you when they can depend and rely on you. Any man with a questionable character cannot make a good leader.

3. Selfless Service

Jesus speaking in the book of Mark chapter 9 verse 35 says, “whosoever desires to be the first among you should be ready to be the servant of others. You don’t leader to be served, the ideal thing is to lead to serve others. Leadership is all about service. 

John F. Kennedy in his inaugural speech said and I quote, “ Ask not for what your country can do for you, ask for what you can do for your country”. He went further to say that, “one of the most extolled virtues of all time is selfless service to others. 

Note: It is in the room of service that leaders are enthroned.

Therefore, everyone aspiring to lead others should seek the good of other people and be ready to serve the interests of the masses.

4. Be A Good Listener
  • Good listeners are good leader
  • Always welcome other people’s opinions and ideas
  • Be open minded – take counsel and corrections
  • Avoid the mistake of knowing it all


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