Leadership Qualities That Matter the Most: Lessons from Davos 2014 by Jeffrey M Cohn at Huffington Post on 4 February 2014.

What kind of leadership lessons can you glean from a global assembly of CEOs?  For the author, who attended the 2014 World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, there were eight recurring leadership factors:

  • Judgement – the ability to focus on the most salient points and understand their impact
  • Empathy – the ability to understand the other stakeholders (cognitively and emotionally).  Note: the author stresses the point of differentiating between empathy and compassion
  • Self-awareness – the internal counterpart to empathy
  • Adaptability – “Organizations – and leaders – must be able and willing to change direction if and when required.”  Of course, you also need good judgement to know WHEN to adapt…
  • Integrity – the moral compass that provides a clear path in a sea of gray choices
  • Passion – A burning desire to get things done
  • Courage – The ability to make and stand by difficult choices, especially in the face of adversity
  • Resilience – The ability to recover from setbacks

I’m surprised that two points didn’t get mentioned – vision (although the author may have incorporated that into judgement) and communication.  I see these two as indispensable for leaders.

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