5 Leader Traits for 2021


By Marcel Schwantes

Leadership practices that are in short supply at a time when we need them the most.

Warren Buffett once asked a group of students to think of a classmate they felt had the makings of success long term, such that they would want to get 10 percent of that person’s earnings for the rest of their lives.

“You would probably pick the one you responded the best to, the one who has the leadership qualities, the one who is able to get other people to carry out their interests,” said Buffett, alluding to that person’s integrity. “That would be the person who is generous, honest, and who gave credit to other people for their own ideas.”

Buffett’s examples of leadership qualities are in short supply these days. As we collectively recover from the wounds inflicted by Capitol rioters, one thing is perfectly clear: We need more leaders with moral integrity to occupy highly influential roles within both our political ranks and the ranks of corporate America. 

To shift strategy means shifting belief systems around what a leader is and does. The hypermasculine, tough-guy, charismatic persona that is seen as the ideal leader is a tragic misrepresentation of great leadership. While a strong, smart, and decisive mind is a necessity, so is empathy, compassion, and consideration of others. 

Warren Buffett’s recommendations of selflessness, generosity, and honesty, and here are 5 more.

Originally published on inc.com January 18, 2021