Leadership strengths: Discover how to boost your impact by building your leadership strengths

Leadership strengths vary among individuals and can include factors such as leadership style, experience, confidence and culture. While everyone has innate leadership strengths - and weaknesses - these are not permanently fixed. Leadership skills can be developed through leadership training and practice. Knowing both your existing leadership strengths and the areas where you need to develop is vital to becoming a great leader, from project to the executive level.

Core leadership strengths

To be an effective leader, you must be able to influence with impact and inspire people to excel. Key leadership strengths to achieve this include:

  • Being mindful of yourself and those around you
  • Excellent communication skills
  • Effective negotiation skills
  • Conflict resolution skills
  • Collaboration skills and intercultural sensitivity
  • Ability to work with different personal styles and approaches
  • Being able to make courageous or difficult decisions

These leadership strengths require a good understanding of human behavior and dynamics in different situations - as well as a high level of self-awareness. Mastering this will prepare you to confidently face any situation, including ones totally new to you. Aware and tuned into a situation, you will respond to its drivers, not just the events. This is vital to aligning different stakeholders and inspiring people to work together towards a common goal.

Business leadership strengths

Business leaders must also successfully navigate change and uncertainty in today's increasingly complex global business environment. In order to develop - and meet - long-term business goals and objectives, leaders also need solid business management skills, including:

  • Strong cross-functional knowledge of the company
  • Being able to see the "big picture"
  • A strategic mindset
  • Clear leadership vision aligned with strategic priorities

Skills like these, combined with strong personal leadership strengths, will allow you to confidently drive strong performance and organizational change for long-term success.

Building your leadership strengths

Your on-the-job experience will go a long way towards building both core personal leadership skills as well as the necessary business management skills to be a good leader. However, leadership courses from top business management schools can help you build these skills far more quickly. Such courses are particularly beneficial to prepare you for increased leadership responsibilities - where the fall out of learning by experience may be too high to risk.

The right leadership development program will depend on your level and which leadership strengths you particularly need to focus on. But whatever the level, high performance leadership training will improve your ability to lead individuals and teams to their highest level of sustained performance.

Look for leadership courses that allow you to focus on leveraging your own leadership strengths and help you develop your own leadership style. Courses that offer practical leadership exercises, self-awareness exercises, deliberate practice and role play will likely have the greatest impact. One-on-one leadership coaching is also a great way to strengthen your leadership skills. The best leadership courses force you to take a hard look at yourself and your approach to managing people and situations.

The best business management schools offer management training courses that combine business management training with leadership training. This can be a winning approach - strengthening both your personal leadership and business leadership skills together.

Top international business schools offer the added benefit of attracting executives from around the world - meaning you build the awareness and knowledge to successfully lead across cultures.

The bottom line on leadership strengths

A leadership development program from a top business school is a good way to build on your innate leadership strengths. A good program will equip you with the knowledge, skills and tools to take on new challenges with greater confidence and inspire your organization - and its people - to excel. You'll see the results in your enhanced capacity to drive real business impact through more effective use of your personal leadership strengths.

Move into business leadership

Want to make a career move to business leader?

Discover how IMD Business School’s Transition to Business Leadership (TBL) program can prepare you for more senior positions.