Leadership isn’t an abstract idea. In fact, Pat Marotta knows it’s attainable.
True, there isn’t a definitive formula for what makes a leader. But most successful leaders have much more in common than you may think. These traits aren’t inherited. Leadership is crafted through processes that nurture and foster growth.
This is something Pat Marotta knows more than most. The East Greenbush, NY resident is the President and Founder of Uriah Corporation Holdings. But he also works for American National Insurance, where he is the Vice President for the company’s Client Experience Strategy division. In this strategic role, he has demonstrated an ability to lead. Yet, even more importantly, he has acted as a consultant, proving his expertise in developing leadership in others.
Drawing from this experience, Pat Marotta shares five positive qualities found in virtually all successful leaders.
Successful leaders manage themselves.
The term “self-starter” is perhaps overused, but it’s particularly relevant to leadership. Effective leaders are intrinsically motivated. In this way, they are “self-managers.” This is clear in both their personal and professional lives. Leaders are disciplined and detail-oriented, driven by clear, tangible goals. When combined, this produces self-awareness in most leaders. A commitment to regular reflection and improvement is evident.
Successful leaders learn.
As leaders crave growth and new challenges, they naturally evolve into life-long learners. Nothing is ever static. Leaders, like their businesses, are continuously changing. Research, knowledge acquisition, and skill development are at a premium. This breeds innovation. Like Pat Marotta, other leaders are forward thinking, staying current in order to keep their companies competitive. Life-long learners are also quicker to incorporate new technologies or procedures.
Successful leaders communicate.
Leaders are not “one-man bands.” They understand that long-term, sustainable success can rarely be accomplished alone. It requires a team. This can’t exist without strong communication. Leaders must clearly convey goals, expectations, and directions. But they also need to listen and be responsive to other people’s needs. In short, leaders know when to talk and when to listen. Whether it’s during large presentations or one-on-one discussions, these skills are crucial at any level.
Successful leaders care.
For this reason, Pat Marotta advocates all leaders to embrace a “people first” mentality. Successful leaders build relationships. This is often described as emotional intelligence. However, it’s much deeper. Fostering these relationships results in higher staff buy-ins and improved morale across the board. Yet it also produces respect and trust. True leaders are kind and cordial in every interaction. This applies to their clients and customer base too.
Successful leaders solve problems.
Using all these resources, effective leaders seek out solutions. Confidence, courage, and curiosity are needed to address challenges directly. Not to be mistaken as recklessness, a leader isn’t afraid to attempt new or unconventional approaches. It’s about informed decision-making using data-driven methods. They understand that reward often comes with some risk.
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