The 8 Character Traits of Every Successful CEO

posted by Administrator on 02/05/2019 in Blog Posts  | Tagged , ,

Leading your organization requires effective leadership and dedication to problem-solving and growth. You need to be able to communicate with a wide variety of audience, you have to have a strategic mindset, and, more importantly, you have to be committed to your own personal growth. The most successful CEOs possess a unique blend of character traits that set them apart from others and gives them the ability to lead – and lead well.

According to CEO professional development experts, great leaders historically have these 8 key traits:

  1. An ability to learn from past mistakes. CEOs that study the past and learn how to innovate quickly, are often the ones that are able to establish an unshakable competitive advantage. Failing and making mistakes are part of the learning and business process, but what is important is how you incorporate these lessons learned into future action. Taking a proactive approach in terms of planning and problem-solving can be an effective way to ensure you are able to withstand the ebbs and flow of business and be ready for any unforeseen obstacle in the future.
  2. A focus on building lasting relationships. Business is all about relationships. As the CEO you want to have great relationships with all of your stakeholders, including your staff, vendors, and customers. When you invest the time into your relationships, you are better able to generate the buy-in and loyalty you need to enact change for the better of the business. And, when your customers have a great relationship with your company, word-of-mouth marketing can be your winning secret to growing by leaps and bounds.
  3. An unwavering sense of optimism. When you have a positive mindset, it helps to keep your focus on finding solutions, instead of pinpoint problems. Staying realistically optimistic can also boost your company’s culture overall. Of course, in business, there are lots of unpredictables, but when you are able to accept the failures that may come your way, without letting it impact the morale of your company or your future outlook then that is the key!
  4. A realistic view of work-life balance. This extends to being empathetic. CEOs have to lead their staff that will possess a host of different personalities, different experiences, and different personal responsibilities. Being extremely rigid, as a leader, can work against you and lead to higher rates of attrition and a less productive work environment. Your employees want to feel valued and appreciated, but also given the flexibility to know that if they have a family emergency or need to take a day off to attend to personal matters, that they can do so without feeling guilty or, worse, hassled with work-related text messages and emails that they are expected to respond to – even on their days off. At the end of the day, we are all humans, and the more you are able to connect with that human element the more loyal your staff are likely to be.
  5. Comfortable with taking calculated risks. In business, great risk comes with great reward. In order to grow, you will need to be able to step outside of your comfort zone and try new things. The business landscape is so competitive and dynamic that if you are not able to adapt and make educated decisions, you will inevitably be left behind. Leading CEOs are able to leverage their resources to quickly evaluate their options and choose the right one based on data and research.
  6. Able to adjust their leadership style. Being able to lead requires you to be agile both in thought and in action. What may work with one employee, may not work with another. If you are able to adjust your leadership styles to best fit who you are interacting with, you are more likely to get better results. Some employees prefer to be given a task and a deadline and have the freedom to get the work done, as they see fit. Other employees may need more structure and more frequent follow-ups. The key is to know your staff’s strengths and be able to tailor your leadership approach to enhance these strengths.
  7. Understand the importance of coaching. As the leader of your organization, it is important to have a collaborative and productive work environment. You have to take a forward-thinking approach and consider not just what skills you need your employees to have now to thrive, but also what they will need to have in the future to help your company stay ahead. Effective leaders invest in developing their employees’ skills and in expanding their own. The most successful CEOs make professional development a critical part of the company’s mission and provide ample (and varied) opportunities for employees to pursue their interests and further their knowledge.
  8. Never get too comfortable. As technology forces businesses to evolve in order to compete, smart CEOs always keep an eye on trends and spend time on a regular basis researching changes in their industry and others. This focus on understanding that their position in the market is fluid, they have a better handle on how to strategically invest in their business for long-term results. When you lose sight of what the market is doing or what your customers are expecting, you open the door for competitors to succeed. Natural leaders stay on top of this and always approach every situation with a focus on learning and adapting – all the time.

Are you looking for ways to improve your leadership skills? Are there qualities on this list you would like to acquire? If so, we invite you to apply to The Brain Trust, Atlanta’s award-winning CEO professional development group. Our monthly meetings can give you a confidential and proven peer coaching space to expand your skills and learn how to carve out a truly competitive advantage in your industry. Click here for more information.