Type "leadership books" into any search engine and you will be presented with an almost unending list of results. Take a closer look and you will discover that the list consists mainly of lists itself. An even closer look will reveal that the same 20 or so books dominate.
Despite the fact that these books were first published decades apart, they have distilled the timeless fundamentals of leadership. Here are the 6 traits that we believe are the most important and most effective:
- Good leaders unite people around a shared vision that breeds excitement.
- The strategy for that vision is as much about what to do as it is about what not to do.
- Building a team of the best talent allows a leader to implement their visionary strategy.
- The best leaders are characterized by a relentless pursuit of the objectives of their strategy.
- They consistently improve on their vision and strategy through innovation.
- Effective leaders must first be able to lead themselves.
Different authors have differing opinions on the relative importance of these traits and on how they should be implemented. However, they consistently include these basic characteristics.