Throughout history there have been good leaders and bad leaders, strong leaders and weak leaders, leaders that inspired us to be like them and leaders who we desired never to turn into. But what was the difference between the leaders we loved and the leaders we loathed?

Personally, I think all good leaders not only know how to successfully lead but also how to successfully follow, take criticism and remain open to other’s ideas or changes.

But what makes a good leader?

Well I think that these 5 things that each leader does everyday is the key to becoming a great leader:

First and foremost I think great leaders want to help others succeed, it isn’t all about how far they can climb up the ladder but how far their team, their colleagues and their company can climb up that ladder too! Saying things like “What do you need?” or “How can I help?” Offering time and effort into other employees or peers is the mark of a great leader who desires success not only for themselves but for everyone else. So each day I reckon great leaders set time aside to help others, whether it be charities, colleagues or peers. Sir Richard Branson actually said “Train people well enough so they can leave. Treat them well enough that they don’t want to.”

Secondly, I believe that leaders need to be honest with those within their team and above/below them with what the situation is and what is going on. People in your team will not only respect the leader more for being honest but may also understand how to help in a situation, so this may encourage new or innovative ideas. Also, if only parts of certain situations are told then often employees gossip or exchange ideas which are far worse than the truth. All those who aspire to be great leaders should drive to be the kind of leader that prioritises everyone knowing what is going on. I also think it’s important to be honest with your team or peers regarding progress, whether they achieved targets or whether they are lagging behind. This makes room for a conversation on ‘what went well’ and ‘what we can improve upon’ so that the good remains good and the bad is improved upon for the better.

And lastly I think one of the most important things any great leader or any great aspiring leader should do everyday is say the words “What can we do better”. Every successful person is always looking to improve, whether it be with a project that just flopped or a project that is over-achieving by a mile; there is always room for improvement and great leaders see that and encourage others to see that too!

Thanks for reading about three of the many things that make leaders great!