What are the top 3 traits of a gifted leader?

52 Answers
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Matt Flint Yogurt Top Marketing - CEO yogurttopmarketing.co.uk

Leading a team or brand/business forwards is challenging and there’s no rule book that has all the answers.

However, my experiences to date, have taught me that to be a gifted leader, you need to lead by example with honesty and integrity. You have to be dynamic with your decision making and allow others to take control; micro-management is something that most leaders battle with and is one of the biggest barriers to growth. Invest in a great team and trust them to help drive the business forward.

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Samantha Sweet Sweet Squared - Co-Founder www.sweetsquared.com

1. Leave your ego at the door. You are a leader because you thought outside of the box; did something unique. There’s no need to have a ‘don’t you know who I am attitude’ – it makes you look insecure and lame.

2. Ask questions, listen and act (where appropriate). Whether it’s your team or your customers, ask their thoughts and opinions. You learn so much from this exercise. Listening and acting on this info, sometimes taking risks and not being afraid to make changes, shows true entrepreneurialism.

3. Be passionate about what you do and more importantly – have FUN doing it. Life and business should be fun, interesting, thought-provoking and awesome. A leader who embodies these traits, creates a powerful company and team!

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Chris Patterson TSL - CEO tslhealthcare.com

Without doubt, the most important role a leader can play is to set the ‘environment for success’ where people are empowered to deliver. And, by that I mean:

1) developing the right values & behaviours to support
2) good processes, procedures and decision making/ways of working to get the work done (employee enablement) in the most effective and efficient way.

Probably THE most important aspect (and often most overlooked because its hard) of any business is organisational behaviour. In other words how the work gets done is just important (if not more so) than the work itself. Setting the right behavioural tone in terms of those behaviours that are to be encouraged, valued and accepted is crucial to creating an environment free of politics, personal agendas and bias (especially as the organisation grows in size, complexity and critical mass) – the enemy of collaboration and sustainable results.

Good processes and intel(which is largely ubiquitous today) can only take you so far. Strive to build trusting relationships. Recruit the best people for each role; attitudinally not just in terms of skills sets and experience. Good people will become strong advocates. This way the environment becomes self-sustaining. Value diversity but don’t compromise on your values.

Finally, a leader should:

3) Care deeply about everyone in the business.

They should have a driven, inquisitive mindset and an insatiable appetite to get to the truth of things in the search for better results. Walking the floor of the organisation to understand the ‘mood’ not just the board room.

Constantly encouraging people to challenge and question all aspects of the business in the pursuit of change and continuous improvement.

Be fair and consistent and lead with a genuine, sincere and humble approach. Never with status or Ego.

To be a leader, people must want to follow and that means you have to create a connection.

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Naseem Talukdar Plastic Pollution A&AP - CEO www.ppaap.org.uk

Sacrifice- As a leader, you will need to learn to make a number of sacrifices for the team with a smile.

Lead by Example – This is essential especially within the Volunteering/ charity sector as the only way you can retain the passionate volunteers and follow your lead.

Faith – Faith is one of the most important elements (for me) as a leader. Having faith within myself and the people around me is the key to success which is often undervalued. without faith, there can be no team spirit, loyalty, or sacrifice.

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Elizabeth Clark Dream Agility - Founder dreamagility.com

“Be authentic” If you’re new to the leadership game you can often feel you have to walk in a particular pair of shoes, but if it turns out you can’t manage skyscraper stilettos and you’re more of a Birkenstock kind of person, you’re going to get uncomfortable very quickly and the people around you will pick up on it.
“The harder you work the luckier you get” Don’t overthink things, more often than not it’s just an application that’s required not some fancy solution.
“Eat your frog” Procrastination is the devil, inspire your staff by leading by example, don’t put off eating your frog, gobble the nasty tasks down first in the day so the day only gets better.

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Ben Maccorquodale The Rocket Group - Marketing Director

Leadership is about confidence, the ability to collaborate effectively and a sense of empathy to seek the views of others. Leaders don’t operate in isolation. And leaders thrive in environments that respect ideas and opinions above job titles.

Management and leadership are too often conflated. Some of the best leaders I have worked with were not managers. Instead, their qualities were in bringing people with them; to explain their idea and be generous in letting others contribute and run with it. Leaders inspire people and listen and share so that everyone involved can take personal ownership of success.

If you want to lead, forget titles and salaries and positions. Trust your instincts and focus on inspiring the people around you to join your vision to make it succeed.

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Beverley Taylor-Carson Mother Goose Corner - Operations & HR Director www.mothergoosecorner.co.uk

Take time regularly to gain and keep perspective

Burn out is one of the biggest hindrances to productivity, and can leave you being good to no-one. Schedule regular and proper time to step away, refresh, re-focus, and come back with a clear mind: it will help you to keep working on top form, and be the inspiration to your team that they want and need.

Continually develop your EQ

To lead brilliantly you must make sure you’re able to ‘control your monkey’, and respond to challenging situations with a logical mind-set rather than a potentially hot-headed, emotional one that could keep you from arriving at the best solution possible. But at the same time…

….Bring your heart!

The very best of leaders can remain cool, calm and logical while also bringing heart and intuition to their role. See people as people – not just problems in need of fixing – and be as real and as authentic as you can in all you do.

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Charlotte Blair GlobalX - CFO www.globalx.co

Make difficult decisions and do not procrastinate!
Be straight with people, but be kind while you are doing it…
Always approach situations with understanding from all sides, never assume or judge.

Leadership must be a reciprocal relationship with staff, clients and indeed your own relationship with the organisation. once something gets unbalanced, problems can arise, leadership is about rebalancing to drive the organisation forward in the most effective way.

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Julio Taylor Hallam - CEO

Create your own luck. Luck is what happens when you turn intuition into action. That might sound cheesy — but it’s true. Trust your instinct, it led you here and it will lead you there. Follow the general direction of what you love and are inspired by. Unwind the problem and follow the thread — intuition will lead you there. Detail and evidence are important, but they won’t get you there alone.

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Graeme Whiting Catalina Software - Founder

There’s 8 billion people in the world and millions of those will be leaders, in one way or another, whether they’re leading a family, household, small business, corporate or country. Just like in life, each individual will have different traits, and each leadership role will require a different mix of those. for me, things that I focus on are:

1. Enthusiasm – it’s infectious and without loving what you do, you’re unlikely to succeed. Start up a business doing something you love and the success will come.

2. Integrity – your team are likely to be your biggest critics and you’ve got to show them, and sometimes teach them integrity in everything you do, being true to your word, making the harsh decisions when they need to be made and explaining why you had to. This also covers being fair and reasonable to your customers and suppliers.

3. Graciousness – accept that your ideas aren’t always the best ones, that you need to have people on your team that are better than you, that you need to show gratitude to your team, for even the smallest things.

They’re mine, everyone will have their own and it’s important that you’re genuine to yourself in order to find the right style of leadership that works for you… and then you’ll be successful.

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Guy Levine Return - CEO www.return.co

1. Understanding what you want to achieve. This isn’t as easy as it sounds as you will often be faced with lots of opportunities, all with great outcomes, but without a clear picture of where you want to go, you can often be pulled off course.

2. Don’t just expect your people to be the best than can be, help them. Sometimes that means telling the truth. As great leaders, we shouldn’t hide the truth, we should focus on how to share it to make a positive impact.

3. Know that leadership is hard, doesn’t always come naturally and is the culmination of many little things that combine into being a leader. Except its about making progress and not perfection.

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Zandra Moore Panintelligence - CEO www.panintelligence.com

Others before self, curiosity and visibly failing without fear. The last one is my favorite and my biggest personal challenge, being brave enough to publicly fail, especially in front of my team. Failure is critical to learning and finding the right path and solution to a problem, to not fail is to not try and others need to see you fail so they are not afraid to try. As a tech leader I know too well how important innovation is to the success of my company and team, fear of failure can be biggest thing to stifle innovation. As a Leader you have to show that failure is one more step towards a better outcome.

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Martin Barker Beacon - Founder www.thisisbeacon.com

1) Don’t be afraid to cause upset, people don’t like change but as a leader sometimes you just have to force it
2) Listen and Learn, Information changes listen to learn and if required research to make sure you understand what is happening
3) Friendly but not best mates, Action against friends is hard, remember you are leading people and you may have to discipline them

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Chris Collins BoothBook - Founder

Reduce overwhlem in yourself and your team. Start by outlining your tasks for the year, then break them down into quarters, months, weeks and days. At the end of each day, have each team member write down what they achieved today, and what they are planning to achieve tomorrow.
Celebrate the wins – focus on positivity, encouragement and fun. A happy team makes happy customers.

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Alex Jovy My Tree - Founder www.mytree.org.uk

– Have a passion for your position. One of the most important elements of successful entrepreneurship is loving what you do. This means not just a love for doing business, but also a passion for your specific field. I am personally very passionate about climate change. This is why I created the “MyTree” app. available in the app store.

– Be alert and active. I am constantly looking for opportunities to enhance my business and act decisively whenever I find one. What it means is remaining productive at all times, so that all you do contributes to your goals.

– Plan for perfection. Successful entrepreneurs regularly define their business goals and come up with detailed plans to achieve them.
This allows them to focus their actions toward a consistent, positive outcome for the company.
A penchant for planning means you will always have a clear sense of what to do next, and can better assess individual decisions based on how they fit into your broader strategy.

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Estelle Levin-Nally Levin Sources - Founder www.levinsources.com

1. Hire people who are better than you in terms of skills and expertise, aligned with you in terms of values, and diverse to you in terms of experience, personality and demographics. Empower them and hold them accountable. Know when to get out of the way so your team can flourish.
2. Prioritise well. Know when to walk away or say no, and when to do it gently or strongly. Know when to take no for an answer, and when to push harder.
3. Keep learning, proactively, from inside and outside your organisation and your field; invest in yourself to invest in your business.

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Visar Statovci Waste From Home - Co-Founder www.waste-creative.com

When shaping the next generation of leaders, at Waste at least, we always refer back to our cultural principles:
Be brave – Do what’s right, not what’s easy.
Make it better – Continously improve yourself and inspire everyone around you to do the same.
Own your shit – When things go well, everyone takes credit. When things go wrong, take responsibility and learn from it.
Be kind – Don’t be an ass! 🙂 Without humility and kindness, you won’t attract the right people you want around you.

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Alexander Gardiner Rare TV - CEO www.rare-tv.com

A clear goal or sense of direction aligned with an ability to communicate it and make it feel like a fun and achievable journey. Most important though is celebrating the contribution of others and empowering them to feel in control of your shared goals.

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Heide Cohu Studio of Art & Commerce - Founder www.studioartcommerce.com

Having a strong forward vision: as someone whose business specialises in delivering high impact brand campaigns, I’ve come to appreciate the importance of having a clear vision of what I want to achieve. Not just visualise a finished project, but also what success looks like for my business. In order to achieve that, I need to be able to communicate my vision effectively to my team.

Make a difference: Having the ability to make a difference is a gift bestowed upon a leader, especially as a female in such a high position. Being a part of the cultural changes towards diversity, equality, and inclusion for all, is your opportunity to make a real change – for better and for always. In the same sense as making a difference, having the attitude and company culture to do so is also vital. Leading with passion is infectious, which means that if you want your team to share the same passion you have for what you do, you need an environment in which creativity and engagement can thrive. That doesn’t just happen by itself – it needs to come from the top, which is why leaders have a crucial role in defining the culture of a company.

Be brave, take risks: Being brave and taking risks is a key trait of an excellent leader. Taking a step into the unknown, and taking risks to earn rewards, is the secret behind all good leaders, and your staff will respect somebody who isn’t afraid to take a risk and is brave in their decision making.

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Andy Nimmo Muddy Boots Nursery - Owner www.muddybootsnursery.co.uk

Humility – no one wants to work for or with a ****
Integrity – trust is the foundation of any healthy & strong relationship or partnership
Confidence – Someone’s got to lead the charge into the muck & bullets, someone has to risk it all….
Why not you?

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Yuly Massoni Seed Salon - Co-Founder www.seedsalon.co.uk

1- trust your intuition – make observations, call on past experiences, consider consequences but sometimes just do your gut feeling is telling you to do and make you sleep at night.

2- keep on learning – I believe there is always something new to learn everyday and from any situation an opportunity to become wiser. Constantly challenge yourself, and you will be amazed with the results.

And most important Lead by EXAMPLE, people will just follow you.

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Elin Mai Style Doctors - Founder www.styledoctors.com

Inspire > Educate > Adapt. If the last year has taught me anything, it’s that good leadership is essential in difficult times. As a leader, if I can’t do any of these three, our business would not be surviving as it is.

Inspire // During good times and bad, a workforce looks to it’s leader for inspiration. Unless the person leading the team can inspire, how can anyone else feel inspired themselves? Staff need someone who will lift them and make them believe anything is possible.

Educate // Unless a team knows and understands an end goal, every task will seem monotonous, A good leader should be willing and able to share their knowledge to help build0up members of their team to become better at what they do and more confident.

Adapt // A good leader should be able to adapt to any situation and able to look at the big picture. The ability to analyze and adapt to changes are essential but also to have a willingness to do so.

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Mike Ward Singular - Head of Marketing www.singular.live

Honesty. Clarity. Loyalty.
Honesty with your team and with clients including being honest enough to admit when you’re wrong or when someone else has a better idea.
Clarity around your expectations from team members as well as the vision and mission for the company.
Loyalty to support both team members and clients when needed and to build trust internally an externally. Let people know that you have their backs and will support them through their own challenges and mistakes they make.

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Jo Naughton Lights4fun - Co-Founder www.lights4fun.co.uk

Thank you for asking me! We started a business to do something really, really well with a mantra of “do it once and do it right”. We are grateful and fortunate that success has been a happy result of this.
My advice would be:
Show you genuinely care, in every aspect of your daily life, to colleagues, customers, and third parties alike
Identify your weaker areas and employ people far better than you to plug the gaps, and keep telling them how good they are
Follow your instincts, never compromise your values and think big!

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Sharif Karim PrimaPorcelain - Sales Director www.primaporcelain.co.uk

1. CONFIDENCE – Whatever you choose to do, always be confident and give it everything you’ve got. If you’re only going to make a half-hearted effort, it’s probably better not to bother at all.

2. HONESTY – Always be honest with the people you’re leading. This will help you to earn their trust and respect (two things that no effective leader can operate without).

3. COLLABORATION – Listen to your team and take their suggestions on board. Remember, there’s a difference between a leader and a boss: a leader works WITH others, while a boss merely tells others what to do.

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Alan Wright Shower Power Booster - Founder www.showerpowerbooster.co.uk

I am the inventor of the ShowerPowerBooster, it has a 20 year patent and I own 100% of the patent.
As a leader I have established around me a team of people who follow my business ethos which includes Customer Service, and an Excellent Product. On so many occasions I have been faced with suppliers wanting to swap quality for a lower price but maintaining quality is the top reason we sell by word of mouth such a brilliant product.

For an inventor it is essential your product can give results better than competitive products and solutions. If it is not better the invention will never make you a profit. It is essential for get a patent or others will simply copy you. Keep control of the patent so you can dictate the price, quality, and if you insist it is made in Britain it will be. Lead people who share your ethics and vision.

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Matthew Barney Moo Free Chocolates - Head of Sales www.moofreechocolates.com

Firstly, you don’t need to be a CEO, Manger or even Supervisor to be a gifted leader. Anyone can lead by stealth, so never underestimate the power of your influence on your surroundings.
Secondly, if you are responsible for leading a team, give them a safe space to be themselves. We all feel better when we can be the same person at home and at work and the energy we save switching personas can be channelled into adding value to your role.
Finally, it’s a bit of a cliché, but I believe a gifted leader always leads by example. Be the change you want to see and set the standard.

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Francesca Aita Together TV - Head of Marketing www.togethertv.com

Three qualities I recognise in a gifted leader:

1) LISTENING: the worst leaders I have met so far tend to talk a lot and not listen as much as they should (to their employees, to the customers and so on). Listen actively, and most of the answers will come to you as a result.

2) HAVING A VISION: your team needs to see where you are heading to. Let them picture what success looks like, see the long term aims and let them feel active part of the journey.

3) DELEGATING: build a team you can trust, give them vision and direction…and let them work their magic! No leader is expert in every single aspect of the work. A good leader lets professionals do their own job.

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Andrew Kluge Cosatto - CEO www.cosatto.com

Top of my list would be Time Management – or perhaps more accurately – Do What You Say You Will Do, When You Say You Will Do It. That way people who deal with you will have complete confidence and faith in you.
Trust Your People – You have employed them for their skills and expertise to do a job that you have agreed. Trust them to get on with it.
Lastly – Get Out of the Way! Linked to Trust. Don’t stand in your team’s way. Help and support them, but dont micro-manage them. Help them fly and everyone benefits.

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Josie Barton Ethos Farm - Co-Founder www.ethosfarm.com

If I was to choose my top three traits of a truly gifted leader, they would be:
Number One: Authenticity – always be yourself and allow others to be themselves too
Number Two: Open Mindedness – don’t confuse being a leader with always knowing the answer, be human and consider the viewpoints and experience of others
and Number Three: Curiosity – nothing stays the same so take time to look at what is happening in the world around you and consider how you can bring new ideas and ways of working into your business

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Sarah Crimes The Point 1888 - Head of Marketing www.thepoint1888.com

I have been so fortunate to work with some incredibly gifted leaders who have inspired me to lead in a way that feels so natural, and not necessarily like everyone else does it!
1- Honesty. Always be honest, to your clients, colleagues, team and yourself!
2- Be kind. We all need more kindness in our lives, and this should start with the way you lead. Treat others not how you wish to be treated but better!
3- Use the word NO when needed, do not be afraid of it. Say no to customers who are rude to your team, say no to bullies and say no when something doesn’t feel right.

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Sean Steel Uni-Com - Head of Sales www.uni-com.uk.com

You need to be persistent without being a pest, you must understand whom you are trying to deal with or who you are dealing with, understand their business and offer a solution that they did not know they needed and finally be consistent in what you do, remember for most businesses they have a choice, make their choice you.

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Jack Hartley Recyclabox - Head of Operations www.recyclabox.co.uk

I’ve been fortunate enough to learn lessons in leadership from inspiringly gifted individuals, through to those who I’d only follow out of curiosity… Such as they are, my three Top Traits of Gifted Leaders are:

  • Vulnerability – Everyone holds leaders up on pedestals of various heights, and often don’t see or consider how human these individuals are. Having vulnerability, proudly displayed and demonstrated where appropriate, can really help people aim higher, take leaps of faith and aspire to the heights of the Gifted Leader.
  • Humour (a good sense of!) – I challenge anybody to define or describe any situation, ever, that could not be made better with injection of suitable humour. It brings people together, builds bonds, encourages communication and is a great technique for helping people to step back, widen their horizons and develop a sense of proportionality to the context.
  • Risk taking – 99% of the mistakes that you will make are reversible. Go out, make bold choices and take risks… Be calculated, but brave.
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Kath Austin Beebee Wraps - CEO www.beebeewraps.com

Initially, this answer might be something to do with skill sets around management and planning. Whilst those are definitely needed skills and ones that I have had to develop over the years, (still working on that), these are nowhere to be seen in my top 3 traits. These are the gifts I observe in others and see as seedlings growing diligently in me

Being a gifted leader involves having the figurative 1000-yard stare into the future and the tenacity to hold on until we arrive, bringing everyone with them. A leader is one who leads the way, no one else in front, and taking us all into the unknown. The vision trait is often innate yet many have it laying dormant and under developed. Dreaming the way, tracking back to where we are now and developing the steps to help the two meet comes with practice.

Whilst being at the front of the journey you are somewhat alone, it doesn’t mean it’s all on you or indeed the leader makes all the decisions. Another top trait of great leadership is using your talent heavy team, your melting pot of personalities wisely and listening to their contributions. My team has a plethora of skills that I simply don’t have refined enough to call skilful. They do what I view as pretty much impossible. They also reflect back the immediate issues that I need to see when I’m too focussed on the horizon. This is the really workings of a team, everyone is heard, contributes and supports. I see good leaders acknowledging that daily.

Finally, trait three is resilience which waxes and wanes across the years of leading. For example, traversing the pandemic with your healthy head held high and your team believing in your way forward is no mean feat. Retaining resilience is hard work and requires the sort of self-care that gets forgotten; basics like enough sleep, healthy food and regular movement plus the times when you need to lean on a peer. Put your own oxygen mask on first and you will survive, resilience retained in the face of merciless mountains to climb.

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Gill Schofield Bright & Beautiful - Owner www.brightandbeautifulhome.com

TOP 3 TRAITS OF A GIFTED LEADER

1. Lead by example; show the way by being a role model. If you set the tone, your colleagues will follow it.

2. Show humility – good Leaders share the limelight and are comfortable crediting others. Support your colleagues. They’ll appreciate it and your clients will, too.

3. Demonstrate consistency by communicating all the time – make sure you’re heard, check for understanding and know the huge importance of listening.

**Bonus Trait – Set your expectations and stick to them. Knowing what you won’t tolerate means there’s no confusion and a fair, consistent approach.**

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Sheena Marsh Oxford Garden Design - Owner www.oxfordgardendesign.co.uk

Having the vision, developing a team and supporting their growth. As director, I see my role primarily as having the vision to drive the business forwards towards growth. I think the key to a great business is the develop a reliable, competent team and let them get on with what they do best. I have a fantastic group of managers who are more than capable of running the business with little direct involvement from myself. Therefore, I see my chief responsibility as guiding and supporting the management team in their various roles.

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Jared Skey Cognisess - Head of Consulting & Operations www.cognisess.com

Embrace conflict, not for the sake of it, but because when we reach the other side our thinking will have advanced and we will have a shared understanding. If we don’t embrace conflict, we can never better ourselves or our ideas.

Judge the content not the person, to create an environment and culture where criticism can be given and taken. Ensures healthy and robust debate on the best way forward.

Enable people to take accountability and responsibility so their jobs have meaning. Without meaning there is no point in striving to maximise value creation.

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Jon Merri-White Hommage - CEO www.hommage.com

Great question!

My top 3 would have to be perseverance, courage and adaptability.

Perseverance – business is tough and full of rejection, 99% of the time your confidence is on the ropes and people tell you that you or your brand is not good enough, but this is life. You have to take it on the chin, be polite and move on because you only need that 1% to believe in the vision.

Courage – a great leader has to be a great decision maker, when I first took the helm at Hommage the one thing I noticed more than anything else was that I wasn’t reporting directly to anyone, everyone was reporting to me and looking to me for direction and action. This can sometimes be a bit daunting but my trick to break it down is through rational thought analysis – what does the customer want? what makes my staff tick? is the risk worth the reward? As long as you can rationalise it in your head you believe in it and you can go all in, if you don’t you will lack the courage to commit.

Adaptability – the most important trait in life – “rolling with the punches”. The world changes, the market and consumer demands are constantly shifting, different people have different motivations to get up and go and if you get stuck in old one-dimensional ways of thinking it’s highly likely you won’t adapt to the demands required.

Hope this helps!

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Rhys David Credas - CEO www.credas.co.uk

A simple question that could be easily answered with the usual adjectives i.e. integrity, authenticity, honesty, vision etc. However, the reality is the traits change and evolve over time and also very much depends on what requires to be lead. Let me explain:

For a startup business, I’d say:

Vision – What are you aiming for
Work ethic / commitment – You’d better be ready to work harder than you’ve ever worked before
Adaptable – You’d better be ready for things to come out you that you didnt predict or that you’ve never experienced before

Ultimately the world spins very quickly these days so your mindset, strategy and execution needs to be able to move with it.

In general terms, I view the 3 traits below as being critical to becoming an effective leader:

Vision – As a leader, you simply must be able to articulate where you want to take the business, your team etc. Linked to this is being able to shape an appropriate strategy. The word appropriate is also key here as it needs to be appropriate based on the skills, experience and resources you have at your disposal
Execution – Once there is clarity on what is being aimed for, you need a way to understand if the right things are being worked on. This could be a combination of technology, processes and certainly the ability to communicate so you have the information you need on hand, always (otherwise how can you possibly make good decisions)
Integrity – Being a leader of a business is hard and often a thankless task. You must be able to treat your team with respect and be consistent regardless of what is at stake. It’s also a journey, so enjoy it as it’s easy to focus too much on the destination and you miss the journey. The journey is where the growth happens to you as a leader and that of your team so try not to miss it

Distilling leadership into 3 words is tricky but the above are the key ones for me. And wrapping it all up into being a successful leader is all about having a vision, suitable strategy, the right culture and ability to execute, the bonkers part is that it all needs to be fairly fluid!

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Nathan Kelleher Detected - Founder www.detectedglobal.com

1. They Know When to Run
Always extremely hard workers naturally and leading by example. Lifting the level of all around them. When the team see their leader working it is hard not to follow.

2. They Know When to Pause
They don’t rush into all situations but rather will consider their thoughts, the current climate in their team and act in the best interests of all stakeholders.

3. They Know When to Rest
Gifted leaders keep things in perspective and don’t seem to live in a state of constant stress and anxiety. They understand life should be enjoyable and fulfilling.

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Leo Soloman Career Analysts - Owner www.careeranalysts.co.uk

1. The first important trait is to ensure that you make the right decisions. There is an element of natural intelligence to this, but mostly it’s doing the research and thinking through the options and their potential outcomes. You need to give yourself a margin of error so that even if it doesn’t go exactly to plan, you haven’t left you and your people open to disaster.
2. Once you have made the right decision, have the courage to act on it.
3. Patience. Some things take time to come to fruition.

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Jamie Moore Cheeky Chompers - Head of Global Sales www.cheekychompers.com

1. Visionary (Hope & Direction) – Imagining the invisible then creating a vision that engages others, motivates commitment & drives results all whilst developing yourself.
2. Trusted – I don’t believe you can successfully lead without having the trust of all stakeholders. Reliability, credibility and connection are everything.
3. Cognitive Readiness – Being prepared for change and expecting the unexpected is pretty essential too!

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Krisz Rokk Strength In Business - CEO www.strengthinbusiness.com

1. Know yourself. Play to your strengths.
Make getting to know yourself a non-negotiable commitment. Learn to turn off the external noise and put all your conscious attention on your innate intelligence. Find out what your strengths are and double, triple, quadruple down on them.

2. Don’t be afraid to polarize. Define what you stand for and against.
Be crystal clear about who you want to serve and diligently exclude those you don’t want to work with. Put your energy onto those who want and appreciate your help.

3. Know how to build and nurture a strong and loyal team.

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Scott Wimsett Bespoke Films - CEO and Founder www.bespokebanter.com

To be a gifted business leader in 3 traits? From my experience of building a brand and creating a company that delivers highly commercial social media content for leading global brands it all comes down to truly caring. You need to go the extra mile in all cases to ensure your client feels heard, appreciated and genuinely happy with your service.

We are in the creative industry so we absolutely need to have fun as well. Well prepared delivery and immersive visuals in any pitch or client update are of course obvious but enjoying the meeting process and being present and connecting with people, ie, being in the room experiencing something together is crucial to the end result.

We are all about love at Bespoke Banter. We work hard, we treat our clients with deep respect and spoil them with extra films and a very jolly annual party. Making friends is the secret to a long standing and successful business and life is then more meaningful and we definitely don’t stress about the small stuff!

Good listening is the start. Eye contact and a good handshake can start all manner of introductions. Good luck all.

With love.

Scott Wimsett.

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Michael Donald ImageNPay - Chairman of the Board & Group Ceo www.imagenpay.com

Being a gifted leader is achieved through constantly working on self development and hiring people that are ultimately more gifted than oneself.

  1. Creating a trust based economy with both employees and customers where feedback creates opportunities not challenges and ensuring that everyone is able to live those values can be more important than any survey.
  2. Listen more and encourage employees at all levels to lead initiatives and champion projects will drive success at an increased rate.
  3. Be passionate about your brand and always be ready to roll your sleeves up when heavy lifting is required to move things forward.

“Focus on the Task not the Fear of the Task”

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Sophie Maunder VCCP - CEO www.vccp.com
  1. Lack of ego – never ‘I’, always ‘we’…  or even better ‘you’ – bestow praise and acknowledge work on those who actually did it, never ever steal their limelight. Admit you are wrong when you are wrong, don’t dig your heels in, you lose respect and get a much worse outcome on every level.
  2. Asking questions (and REALLY listening to the answers) – so many leaders don’t ask, and if they do, they don’t hear the answer unless its the answer they wanted. Listen, you will learn.
  3. Humour (amongst others traits). People are bonded by laughter, blood, sweat and tears. Make a happy place where people feel safe enough to laugh together at and with each other in good honest open humour.
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Paul Coggins Adludio - CEO www.adludio.com

A leader needs many traits, but if I was to try and categorise the top three it would be

1) Ability to delegate. Having trust and faith in those you hire is critical if any business is going to flourish, but then having the self awareness to realise where others can perform a task better than you is also key
2) Perseverance. Seldom do things work out in a linear line. There are ups and downs, but keeping the faith and sticking to the task with a commitment that is seen by all should permeate a business.
3) Experience. Even the most youthful entrepreneurs will have almost certainly surrounded themselves with those that have experience. One learns best through mistakes, not successes.

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Gary Hunter Redu Group - CEO www.redu.co.uk

1. Your management team need to be passionate about the company not just their salary.
2. Get a business partner or board members that have experience and skill in areas you are weak.
3. Try and remain balanced in the highs and lows of business, exercise and make sure you look after your mental health. The reality is not fast cars, private jets and nice watches, It’s more grinding out a lifestyle and security for your family.

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Vincent Sanchez-Gomez Pagevamp - Co-Founder & CEO www.pagevamp.com

I don’t see there being an absolute truth in relation to, “Top Traits of a Gifted Leader”. That said there are certain traits that I personally admire in a leader, and here are a few of them:
1. An incredible ability to empathize: Someone who can truly listen, connect, and deeply care for people of any background. Someone who is fascinated by people, and loves people, so they are guided by compassion.
2. Driven by values, not by ego: Someone who is motivated by influencing the world in a way that is in alignment with their values/ethics, completely independent of personal gain. Someone who is a champion of a better world, not a champion of themself.
3. Creative and imaginative thinker: Someone who is not intimated by daunting, complex challenges, and has the patience and creativity to think of bold, yet practical solutions, while also acknowledging that a perfect solution never exists.

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Ellie Hernaman Truffle Social - CEO www.trufflesocial.com

1) Proactive listening and awareness: This is so important and I’ve learned the importance of maintaining regular reviews with goals that are agreed between both yourself and the individuals in your team, with clear plans on how goals can be met and in good time!
2) Taking time out for yourself: It’s so easy to let your work dominate your life but putting time aside to switch off and not think of work does the world of good and allows you to step back and reset
3) Providing clear briefs and delegation: So key to ensuring work that is delegated to your team has the best chance of being run efficiently and to the highest quality!

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Kirsty Maxey Teamspirit - CEO www.teamspirit.uk.com

When I think of the best leaders that have worked with or aspire to, they are usually…

1. Gifted communicators: providing their team with a clear vision and purpose that gives everyone direction and the opportunity to get involved.
2. Great encouragers: they know how to motivate people to get things done. They create an atmosphere of mutual encouragement so that it becomes a core part of the culture.
3. Creative thinkers: they are analytical, open-minded and know that there is more than one way to skin a cat. They are resilient and used to dealing with barriers and finding new ways to reach their goal. They don’t give up.

And finally, the best ones are also the hardest workers, they set the tempo in the business, keep the energy high. They know that the team will only go as fast as they go.

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