How To Spot The Qualities Of A Bad Leader
It’s a known fact that most workforces are only as capable as their leader. However, not everyone has the good fortune to work under a leader who is inspiring, capable and motivating. Whether you are working under a leader or employing a leader, it’s important to learn how to recognize the qualities of a bad leader and act accordingly. Outlined below are a few telltale leadership qualities to look for that poor leaders often demonstrate.
One of my favorite leadership quotes is, “Integrity is the most valuable and respected quality of leadership. Always keep your word.” It doesn’t matter how capable, intelligent or effective a leader is. If they lack moral integrity, troubles are bound to follow. For one, employees look to their leaders for examples of what behavior is acceptable. If a leader is engaging in unethical behavior, it won’t be long before the employees under them are engaging in unethical behavior as well. Sooner or later, a lack of moral integrity almost always leads to a person’s undoing, which is why it should be a major red flag.
Lack Of Adaptability
Great leaders know how to employ a range of leadership styles depending on what the situation calls for. The simple truth is that not all employees are motivated by the same factors, and there is no “one-size-fits-all” approach that will work in every situation. Good leaders recognize this and are fluid, while poor leaders may be stuck in their ways and unwilling to adapt to what the situation calls for. If you notice that a leader is stubborn, slow to adapt to changing situations and is demonstrating a “my-way-or-the-highway” attitude, they are likely a poor leader.
Little Vision For The Future
The job of a leader is to push forward, and good leaders should always be focused on how they can make tomorrow more efficient and productive than today, as demonstrated by Elon Musk‘s vision of the future. Bad leaders, though, often get complacent and stay satisfied with the status quo. If a leader is not focused on the future and demonstrating a clear plan for how to continuously improve, progress is unlikely to happen.
Lack Of Accountability
The best leaders take accountability when things go wrong and give credit to others when things go right. Employees want to know that they are working for a leader who will give them due credit when they do well and not throw them under the bus when things go wrong. Some leaders, though, are unable or unwilling to shoulder this responsibility and instead deflect blame to others and take credit for themselves. In the end, this behavior is going to do very little to motivate a workforce to succeed.
Poor Communication Skills
Great communication skills are by far some of the most important traits for a leader to have. It doesn’t matter how effective a plan a leader is able to draw up. If they are not able to communicate that plan to their employees in a way that is easy to understand and motivating, then little progress is going to be made. Good leaders need to be able to listen intently and communicate clearly. If a leader is demonstrating an inability to communicate their ideas and expectations to others, they are not likely to be a very effective leader.
Leadership can make or break any business. Because of this, there are a few key factors to consider before you join a new team or hire a new leader. These characteristics should also be applied to anyone trying to improve their own skills, as well. No matter the case, remember that great leaders must regularly demonstrate integrity, adaptability, vision, accountability and communication skills to effectively lead their teams to greatness.
By, Brian Tracy
Culled From FORBES