10 qualities every good leader should have

One of our successful serious games at Totem Learning has been ‘Unlock: Leadership’. There appears to be a growing need for strong and good leaders across all industries. Our game covers all the necessary skills needed at Level 2 training. This includes things like negotiation, teamwork and strategy along with many more. The game certainly helps improve these skills and allows you to reconsider what areas you need to develop. But what qualities are needed in a good leader? Well after reading a few online articles, looking at forums and focusing on what we already know, there seem to be ten qualities:


Getting involved

One of the best things a leader can do is to get involved. Be a significant and useful member of the team. You will have qualified team members who want to be listened to but ultimately they still need the assurance that they are reporting to someone who understands any issue instantly and can sort it. Working together allows for a more harmonious working environment as everyone feels like they are contributing to something bigger.



A leader should be a leader because they have had enough experience handling a variety of situations with generally a good outcome. It would be useful to act as a mentor to your employees, especially those who stand out as possessing early qualities of leadership. It may be interesting to see what they do when you pass on your wealth of knowledge. They will look up to you as a good example of ‘how it’s done’ and this can reassure a team and restore confidence in what you say.



Being honest and having a set of principles you stick to is important. People need a leader who is constant and stable. It’s good to know where you stand with them which can speed a lot of things up and avoid confusion.  



Loyalty is essential. You should always have the welfare of your company/organisation and your employees as a driving force behind your choices. No one wants a leader who is ambiguous when it comes to allegiance.



The common phrase is ‘communication is key’...but it really is. Without good communication, no one knows what is happening or what is going to happen. An organisation needs a leader who is able to communicate success as well as problems to the employees or team in an effective way. They also need to be approachable and refrain from ‘talking down’ to someone as that will most likely only cause resentment.  


Good decision making

Whilst there may be many good ideas thrown out in a discussion, it takes a good leader to take the best from it and apply it without making the other ideas feel invalid. It’s essential for there to be someone who steers the ship in a particular direction and is decisive when there is a time limit.



Charisma goes a long way, especially when needing to convince people that they can put their faith in you to represent the company as the ‘boss’. Having charisma also means you can be persuasive, eloquent and likeable which are all great qualities in a leader.  



A leader should have an end goal for the organisation, or at least goals along the way to reaching that end goal .Without the vision, there is very little enthusiasm and incentive from the organisation to work hard or place their trust in you.



No one likes arrogance. A leader should be aware of how they come across and being humble will only make you more likeable. Your work and efforts will speak volumes anyway so there is no need to come across as self-centered. People will only be quicker to critique than praise if you lack humility.



If there is ever a disagreement, a good leader should know how to cooperate and make things happen rather than arguing. It’s better to move forward and find a solution and that happens through redistributing workload and listening to what the team are saying.