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Follow the Leader... 10 Characteristics of Great Leaders

If you want people to follow you, here are 10 characteristics to work on and develop in your leadership.

#1 - Integrity.  

Keep your word.  Be honest.  Be authentic. 


When it comes to integrity, it's not just about what you do.  It is also about who you are.  What you do flows out of who you are.

Integrity is Abraham Lincoln.  He bought something in a store and was walking back home and realized the check-out person had accidentally given him too much change.  In spite of the fact that it was only a few pennies, Lincoln walked back several miles to give the store their change back.

If you are an authentic leader, you won't be fake or caught in a lie.

#2 - Empowering others.

A great leader doesn't micromanage.  Instead, they empower others to lead.  I often say this -

"Good leaders are powerful.  Great leaders are empowering."

Great leaders know how to delegate and then follow up with guidance and insight when needed. 


"Good leaders are stars.  Great leaders create stars." 

If you want to be a great leader, then spend more time equipping and less time doing.

Your ability to assign tasks to others and manage your own time effectively is vital.

#3 - Humility.

They are not filled with pride.  Rather, they give the credit away for accomplishments.

They admit it when they make a mistake or misstep. 

They lead the way in asking for forgiveness when there is conflict or misunderstandings.

Many people believe that humble leaders make the best leaders.

#4 - Ability to mentor and teach other leaders.

They know how to pour into others and help them grow.  They always have 3-4 people that they are investing in. They love all their team members equally.  But they are selective when it comes to choosing people they are going to mentor and pour into. 

#5 - Vision casting.  

Great leaders know how to communicate strategy to the team.  They align the efforts of individuals toward a common vision.  They create a sense of purpose which drives progress.  They don't delegate this because they know it is one of their biggest responsibilities.  

#6 - Feedback.

Great leaders ask for feedback.  They know it is a critical step in being able to improve their leadership skills.  

They actively seek out their blind spots. They know they can't improve if they don't know what it is they need to improve. 

Great leaders also take into consideration that some team members may feel apprehensive about criticizing their leadership style.  The leader must take the initiative and build trust with the team members. This will help them know that any feedback they give will be handled professionally and will not effect the personal relationship the leader might have with them.

To improve honesty in the feedback,  the leader may choose to send an anonymous survey.  The leader can then take action wherever possible.  The feedback is only helpful if it allows the leader to take action based on the feedback.

#7 - Active listening. 

There is listening and then there is active listening.  Great leaders are active listeners. They listen sincerely to what others have to say.  They seek to understand people and their point of view.  They know they can get new and fresh ideas from the team. 

#8 - Resilience. 

Great leaders face hard days too.  But they don't let the hardships dishearten them from pushing through and keep them from reaching their goals.

Great leaders don't let the hardships and challenges bother them all the time.  There will also be challenges, but a great leader pushes through it. They maintain their energy level as they respond to the disruptions. 

Great leaders don't give up.  Great leaders don't stay down when they get knocked down. 


 #9 - Passion.

Great leaders are driven by passion towards their goal. They are highly passionate about their dreams and objectives.

They know what they want to see accomplished and work hard to achieve those.

Their passion is infectious and inspiring. They are highly committed to their goals and help others achieve theirs as well.

It keeps them active and dedicated to the said task.

#10 - Personal walk with Jesus.

I saved the most critical and important characteristic for last.  It's a personal walk with Jesus.  As you spend time with Him, you will grow spiritually. 

I believe that the more time you spend with Jesus, the better leader you will be.  Jesus is the greatest leader of all times.  Spending time with Him is the difference maker.  As you walk with Him, you will be filled with His wisdom, anointing, and power.  

Without a personal walk with Jesus, you will never obtain the first nine of these characteristics.  

Listen to His Words:

Without Me you can do nothing...

You will receive power...

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me...

Call on Me and I will answer and show you great and mighty things...

It is not by might nor by power...it is through His Spirit...

I pray that 2024 will be your best leadership year ever.  As you live out these characteristics, God is going to do great things in your life and through your life.

p.s. Have you read my book "Lead Well in Children's Ministry?"  It contains tons of great leadership skills and training for leading in children and family ministry.  Grab your copy today at this link.


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