11 Principles of Leadership- Characteristics of Leadership

11 Principles of Leadership

Are you the one who feels that you lack leadership qualities? Are you too looking for ways to inculcate this quality in yourself? Are you too not aware of the principles over which this leadership works? Then here is the satisfying answer to all your questions. Read on to get all your questions about leadership answered. Here are the 11 Principles of Leadership.

Leadership is amongst one such word that is known to almost everyone but the definition of it varies from person to person. Leadership can hold a different meaning to one person but may not fit suitably in another person’s shoes.

What is Leadership?

Leadership means the art of motivating a group of people in order to act towards the achievement of one common goal. It is the capability of becoming able first and then getting on to prepare oneself to inspire and motivate others. Leadership is not only impalpable but also difficult to measure and hard to describe. It is indeed the potential to hold an influence on the behavior of others.

Definition of Leadership According to Some Famous Personalities

  1. By Keith Davis, “Leadership is the ability to persuade others to seek defined objectives enthusiastically. It is the human factor which binds a group together and motivates it towards goals.”

  2. By Livingston – “Leadership is the ability to awaken the desire to follow a common objective.”

  3. By C.I. Bernard – “Leadership is the quality of behavior of the individuals whereby they guide people or their activities in organized efforts.”

  4. By Bernard Keys and Thomas – “Leadership is the process of influencing and supporting others to work enthusiastically towards achieving objectives.”

  5. By George R. Terry, “Leadership is a relationship in which one person influences others to work together willingly on related tasks to attain what the leader desires.”

“BE KNOW AND DO ” Concept of Leadership

  • BE a profession. One must be honest and loyal towards the institution and perform things with responsibility
  • BE a professional who holds the qualities of being competent, honest, polite, courageous, imaginative, intelligent, self-reliant, and many more.
  • KNOW about all the basic four elements of leadership which involve- situation, communication, leader, and follower.
  • KNOW yourself first. In order to deal with others first work on knowing things about yourself like weaknesses, strengths, skills, abilities, and knowledge.
  • KNOW about human nature. Once you completely figure out things about yourself, work on understanding things like human behavior, human needs, human emotions, stress issues, and more.
  • KNOW about your organization. Try to find out things you can do to help your organization and the people working there.
  • KNOW about your job. One must be well aware of the skill of motivating and inspiring people to achieve their tasks.
  • DO provide direction. Work on doing things including problem-solving, stress-relieving, proper and effective planning, right and wise decision making.
  • DO proper implementation. After having a proper goal and its accomplishments, plan to implement it at the right time and place.
  • DO motivate others. Always motivate followers towards working on the right path to achieve the desired goal.

Nature of Leadership

Leadership can be variously viewed as: 

  • Focal Person: According to this, people are viewed according to the designation they hold in an organization or an institution like executives, directors, managers, chiefs, or administrators.
  • Function: Leadership as a function is viewed as activities that involve the achievement of desired goals. 
  • Status Group: This involves shifting of a person towards the position of leadership by virtue of hai heredity traits.
  • Process: Leadership is an interactive process between a leader and his followers. The leader creates an influence over his followers towards the achievement of their common goal.

Characteristics of Leadership

  • Leadership is bound to the situation.There can not be any best and defined style of leadership. It all depends on the way we tackle the situation that arises at a particular time.
  • Leadership is not any single process rather it is a group of processes. It involves the interaction between two or more people.
  • It is an interpersonal process of motivating others to achieve a common goal.
  • It involves the inculcation of many habits including maturity, intelligence, personality, self-confidence, active personality, integrity, decisiveness, and many more.
  • It highly focuses on molding the behavior of others towards the achievement of common goals.
  • It deals in readiness to hold the acceptance of complete responsibility of whatever the situation may be.
  • Leadership in no sense means bossism or management.
  • Leadership does not revolve around one dimension. It involves Followership.If there are no followers then there is no leader and thus no leadership.
  • It is a goal-oriented process.
  • Leadership does not at all involve any Formal Position.
  • One must hold a working relationship between a leader and his followers.
  • Always accomplishment of goals that involve community interest should be looked on for.

10 Effective Traits of Leadership

It is commonly believed that a person is born with a leadership trait but to the knowledge of such people, leadership is one such trait-like many other traits that can be acquired with the passage of time and practice. So here is the list of must-have effective leadership traits:-

  1. Long Visioner: Leaders always carry a long vision. They plan out stuff keeping all the future consequences and outcomes in mind. They also are aware of the continuous changes that will be required towards the attainment of the goal.

  2. High Self Motivation: Leaders always hold up to the brim of self-motivation in themselves. Besides just fulfilling the task, leaders always try to excel.

  3. Influencing Communicator: Leaders are mind-blowing effective communicators. They convey things to the followers in a very influential, systematic, and easiest possible way. Having the skill of speaking, a leader also holds good listening skills too.

  4. Public-Oriented: Leaders are common people oriented. They understand the importance of teamwork and always take each team member into account while performing any task. They make each team member feel his importance and worth.

  5. Responsible: Leaders always find themselves accountable for any mistake done and never try to hold an escape path in this situation. They think it is their responsibility to mend the mistake instead of playing blame games.

  6. Confident: All the leaders possess the quality of holding confidence as they have to perform certain tough decisions during their course of work. This quality of their help them to inspire, motivate and hold good communication with the followers.

  7. Emotional Stability: Leaders are very emotionally stable. They do not always get themselves drained out in any particular emotion which plays a great aid to them in handling their stress and pressure of work.

  8. Self-Organizing: It is easy to organize others rather than organizing oneself. Leaders always are self-managing. A good leader always knows how and what to manage or prioritize his work and time in.

  9. Creative and Innovative: Leaders are well innovative and creative in their work. A good leader always tries to perform a task in a well innovative, creative, and easiest possible way so as to maintain the interest of every team member throughout.

  10. Persistent: A good leader holds the trait of being persistent in his work. He is always determined in achieving the desired set goal. 

Essential 11 Principles of Leadership

  1. Be Technically and Tactically Proficient: This simply defines a person who is well aware of his job and duties and holds good knowledge in the field. To inculcate the principle of leadership in yourself you have to do the following things:
    • Get yourself braced up for the job of a leader but at a first step ahead.
    • Know about the expectation of followers from you and spend time and energy to fulfill so.
    • Adopting a positive attitude towards grabbing and learning things from ones who are more technically and tactically efficient than you.

  2. Know About Your People and Work for Their Welfare: This one holds a vital amongst all the principles of leadership. One must be aware of the strengths and weaknesses of every member belonging to the team and should be given tasks and situations according to that. To attain mastery in adopting this principle one must-
    • Practice fairness 
    • Be easy to approach and communicate with.
    • Should reward everyone equally
    • Encourage more and more the participation
    • Give priority to their well being than yours

  3. Know Yourself and Practise Self Improvement: A leader must be acquainted with his own strengths and weaknesses by making use of leadership traits. One must always keep all the doors open to improvement. This principle can be practiced by adopting things mentioned below:-
    • Go on for the honest opinions of your dear ones.
    • Built genuine interest in people and their issues.
    • Learn by case studying.
    • Always make an honest and fair evaluation of yourself.
    • Adopt a definite plan towards the achievement of any goal.

  4. Be a Role Model: A genuine leader is always the one who adopts and shows courage, intelligence, integrity, and emotional and mental balance before holding any expectations from others. Right from your physical appearance to your mental and emotional ability to handle any situation all just gets displayed in front of your followers and your followers are your reflection. So always be a role model everyone looks up to. Ways of setting an example:
    • Never ever support any kind of favoritism.
    • Hold an optimistic approach.
    • Always be ready to perform the task that you have asked your Marine to perform.
    • Impart responsibility and avoid supervision.

  5. Keep Your Personnel Updated: Being a good leader, keep all your teammates updated about the happenings and give appreciation wherever needed. This will not only make them aware of their job but also will create a sense of motivation and enthusiasm to perform it in the best possible way they can.

  6. Make Sure About the Supervision and Accomplishment Of the Task: A leader should always make sure that whenever and wherever any task is given to the Marines, it is properly understood, supervised, and at last accomplished properly. 

  7. Make Right Decisions At Right Time: A leader must be able to evaluate the situation quickly and should be apt enough to make the right decisions without getting drained in emotions and so. There should be no space for lack of confidence, confusion, and hesitation while taking the desired decision over the situation.

  8. Be a Trainer To Your Teammates: The leader always imparts his knowledge, practices, and experiences with his followers in order to create future leaders for the nation and the society. Make sure to be aware of every member of the team about the strengths and weaknesses and also them to improve over them with time.

  9. Hold a Sense of Responsibility Among Followers: The leader is one who owns the responsibility if anything is being done wrong and in no case blame game. The leader tries his level best to solve the issue and take measures so as not to get those things repeated up in any case.

  10.  Develop A Sense Of Responsibility Among Team Members: The leader makes every possible effort to make his team members take responsibility for every task they perform. This encourages the members with a sense of courage, confidence, and imbibes in them the zeal of doing the task more responsibly and effectively.

  11. Proper Knowledge About Technical And Tactical Command Capabilities: The leader must be aware of his abilities to hold his command. Go on to assign challenging tasks to your unit but before do make sure that they are well prepared for it.


 So from all the above details, it is quite clear that Leadership is never about holding any prior position, seniority, titles, personal attributes, management but instead a social process in which you create an influence to enhance the efforts of others to fulfill any desired common goal.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Is management and leadership the same?
    Management and Leadership are considered as one by many amongst us but unfortunately they both are quite different from each other.

  2. Does there is no involvement of interpersonal issues in Leadership?
    No doubt there is the involvement of interpersonal issues but are very minimal in number as compared to those in management.

  3. Is there any enjoyment of any relative independence in leadership?
    Leadership is the only one that is entirely operational over relative independence.
11 Principles of Leadership- Characteristics of Leadership

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