The following are qualities that great leaders posses:
- Loyalty - Above all things a leader must be loyal. Disagreement is not necessarily disloyal. In fact a leader or disciple who disagrees in the best interest of an organization should be listened to. On the other hand, a person who participates in or encourages that are counter to the good of an establishment is disloyal.
- Courage - Leaders must have courage. They must be fearless and have the fortitude to carry out responsibilities and assignments given to them the valor to accept the risks of leadership. Leaders must not shy away at the sight of obstacles, nor lose their composure when in the presence of adversity.
- Desire - A leader must have the desire to lead an organization. Must have an inherent commitment to influencing people, processes, and outcomes.
- Stamina - A leader must have the stamina to recover rapidly from disappointment- to bounce back form discouragement, to carry out the responsibilities of their office without becoming distorted in their views-without losing clear perspective, as well as the emotional strength persist in the face of seemingly difficult circumstances.
- Physical Stamina - Leaders must be able to endure the physical demands of their leadership duties and must be strong in body in order to lead an organization. "A healthy body is a healthy mind."
- Empathy - Leaders must develop empathy-an appreciation for and an understanding of the values of others, sensitivity for other cultures, beliefs, and traditions. However, empathy must not be confused with sympathy.
- Decisiveness - Leaders must learn to be decisive, knowing when to act and when not to act, taking into account all facts bearing on the situation and then carry out their leadership role. Vacillation and procrastination confuse and discourage subordinates, peers, and superiors.
- Anticipation - Learning by observation and through instincts sharpened by tested experience, leaders must anticipate thoughts, actions and consequences.
- Timing - Essential to all acts of leadership is the timing of recommendations and actions. This particular leadership skill is developed through the lessons learned from failure. Knowing whom you are dealing with, their motives, characters, priorities and ambitions are critical elements even when seeking approval of the simplest recommendation.
- Competitiveness - An essential quality of leadership is an intrinsic desire to win. Leaders without a sense of competitiveness are weak and easily overcome by the slightest challenge.
- Self-Confidence - Leaders with proper training and experience develop personal feelings of assurance with which to meet the inherent challenges of leadership.
- Accountability - Learning to account for personal actions and those of subordinates is fundamental to leadership. Leaders must never heap praise or lay blame on others for what they themselves achieve or fail to accomplish, no matter how glorious or grave the consequences.
- Responsibility - Leaders are only necessary when someone is to be responsible to see that actions are carried out and directions followed. Leaders are responsible to for the results of their organization or team.
- Credibility - Leaders must be trusted to have the intelligence and integrity to provide correct information. Their words and actions must be believable in order to gain the proper influence and trust.
- Tenacity - The quality of steadfast drive to accomplish assignments is a desirable and essential quality of leadership. Persist and pursue through discouragement, deception, and even personal abandonment. Pertinacity is often the key to achieving difficult assignments or meeting challenging goals.
- Dependability - Leaders are depended upon in all situations to carry out roles and responsibilities and must also depend on others to get things done.
- Stewardship - Leaders must have the essential quality, a caretaker quality. Must serve in a manner that encourages confidence, trust, and loyalty. Subordinates are not to be abused; they are to be guided, developed and rewarded for their performance.
- Delegation - Leaders must know the "art of delegation." Leaders should never delegate responsibilities that need direct attention. Actions that don't require direct attention are appropriately delegated to the one most able to fulfill the assignment. Leaders grant authority, accountability, and responsibility to those they have delegated assignments. Leaders accept full responsibility for all assignments-even those that have been delegated. Once responsibilities have been delegated there should never be any interference, unless asked to assist with delegated tasks. Competent leaders will delegate important responsibilities to inexperience followers in order to accomplish the mission, develop skills and demonstrate loyalty for and trust.
It is not by accident that the final four teams left in the playoffs have outstanding leadership from ownership through coaching and down to key players in the team. The same can be said for the other teams that were eliminated from Super Bowl contention this past weekend. For starters the Pittsburgh Steelers have the Rooneys who are owners of the team, great coaching staff, and players from key positions. On offense there is Hines Ward and "Big Ben", and on defense there is Polamalu. The Ravens have Cameron bringing the rookie who has yet to play like one due to the fact that he hasn't thrown an interception. And Ray Lewis, Stubbs, and Reed on the defensive side of the ball. The Cardinals have Whisenhunt and old #13 Kurt Warner leading the team to a first appearance in the NFC chapionship game. Not improbable at all that they are hosting the Eagles. The Eagles have Jeffrey Lurie as their owner, Andy Reid as their head coach and Jim Johnson as their defensive coordinator leading the team as administrators. But Donovan McNabb is the leader of the offense and Brian Dawkins is the leader of the defense.
Each organization has great leadership from the owners to the players. For those teams that are on the brink of becoming a great team need to sign from Super Bowl championship teams veteran free agents that have three or four really good years left in them in order to take them to the ultimate goal of winning a championship. That are some teams that have a lot of talented players on their teams, but lack that leader(s) who know how to get to and win the big game. These leaders either posses some or all of the qualities that were listed above in order to make a difference in a team or an organization.