Today I caught up with a friend of mine who works as an accounts manager for a marketing organisation. He is often very opinionated and rather open minded about things and so I decided to do a little exercise with him which entailed creating a mini mind map of what makes a perfect leader. Together we drummed up some ideas of what makes a perfect leader..........

What makes a perfect leader?
  • Allows their employees to have their break time / more flexible – I believe a leader should be flexible in terms of approach to his her staff. After all it’s about reaching the goal and if these employees know their duties then they deserve their freedom. I also think this is a critical part to leadership, i.e. being kind to ones followers and allowing them to still think for themselves. Such doing can entail that they perform even better as they offer a better creative input to the organisation.

  • Smart - Not bloating all the time – I think my friend reckons here that the leader should be smart but shouldn’t be a big mouth about it. I agree with this, intellect should be hidden and not shown. It also creates for differentiation amongst people which may not work out so well in tighter groups.

  • Appreciative – This refers to what I was saying earlier on in another entry, how it is critical that a leader acknowledges his / her followers. I still stand by this and I also recognise that when one appreciates another individual that a stronger bond is formed.

  • Acknowledges that a person needs change - Facilitates their needs / gets them motivated to change for the better – This again related to another entry where it was acknowledged that change is critical to any business. Even so in other environments as well. Based on this I recognise that it is something a leader must always be on the lookout for and how to go about implementing.

  • Gives out incentives when organisation is going well – I agree with this statement, it is critical to give merit where it is deserved. It also allows for the leader to be on a friendly grounding with his followers which as a result can be returned with better outcomes to developed solutions.

  • Able to spend time with individuals – Although time is always critical I can see how it would be important to spend time with individuals who are followers as much as possible. After all within a business context it is about strengthening relationships and not burning bridges.

  • Passion – This speaks for itself. I think it is hard though as a leader to find passion although I believe it does stem from trait theory. A leader will have this or they won’t. I don’t think passion can be taught but I think based on my own experience that you can find meaning for why you want to be passionate.

  • Communication skills – As spoken about in other entries this is critical. Effectively it differentiates a good leader from a shit leader.

  • A social drinker – I take it that this means a leader needs to be just like everyone else.

  • Eats healthy / Drinks protein shakes – They do say you are what you eat. I know personally that when I eat better etc my outcomes sometimes feel better then when I scoff on the wrong types of foods. I should have of mentioned this earlier but it does make sense. In a way eating properly is like fine tuning a Ferrari to make it run better thus same applying for a leader.

  • Lives a modest lifestyle – Now this statement reminds me of the CEO of IKEA who was on a massive pay packet of a 100 million or so and he was still driving around in a $20 000 VoltsWagon that he had been taking to the mechanic for the past 8 years. I truly admire this and I believe it is critical for a leader to not differentiate himself so much from his followers. After all his followers are on a journey with him, it wouldn’t make sense to make them feel like crap whilst you enjoy the luxuries.

  • Multi cultural perspectives – This reminds me of the prime minister of Turkey who is now open to a western approach. I also know that I myself coming from the Former Republic of Yugoslavia and now living here that I have become quite open to various multi cultural perspectives. In this regard I feel as if I can excel well.

  • Someone who is with the times – Again this reflects on being multi cultural but I guess it also entails keeping up with new leadership approaches / styles / strategies and so forth which could be used to reach end objectives.

  • Holds an image consistently – Now this is a hard one but it does remind me of my friends comment about John Howard in that he was honest about his position. Obviously if a leader sticks within controlled schedule the image should be upheld.

  • Security - Not feeding false dreams – I believe this means that a leader needs to make his followers feel secure about what it is they are doing. I should have of noted this earlier but I think I have covered it where I have said a leaders followers need to feel wanted etc.

  • Physically built – Again this has to do with eating properly. But I can see how a bigger person would be more intimidating than a smaller person.

  • Popular – This is quite critical I believe even though I hate thinking about it. Being popular wins the race in many ways and this has been proven over and over again. A good example of this is Eddie McGuire, his popularity has gotten him many notable positions. As such I believe popularity can also eliminate any faults that you may have in terms of capacity to do the leadership job. Rather wrong but it is what it is......

  • A combination of Obama and Arnold Schwarzeneger – Ha ha I guess this means strong or perhaps moulding leadership styles which is something I have discussed in other entries.

  • Has to be like a white tiger - Unique / good looking / attacks when he needs to – This I would assume means finding a unique character within yourself and then following this.

  • Has to strategise to maintain relationships with people – I think my friend meant here that a leader needs to be good at strategising to get the outcome that everyone wants. I have recognised this in the past and as such I note it again to myself, it is IMPORTANT!!!

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