Qualities of potential business leaders

Despite all the talk about strong leadership, a robust leadership pipeline, and smooth succession of leadership, many corporate organizations do not have a process for identifying and grooming high-potential employees. Noel Tichy, in his book “The Leadership Engine”, states that “the companies that win” will be those who have a consistent focus on developing leadership qualities like Brandon Long Denver at all levels.

These five characteristics would be a great asset to any leader in a company. We already consider certain traits when discussing leaders – domain expertise and diligence, industriousness, and average intelligence, preferably higher.


Potential business leaders must have the ability to see beyond tomorrow and consider where his company or industry could be in the larger global context. He must not only have vision, but also have the ability to see the bigger picture and the confidence to lead his team. This quality is often overlooked when looking for a future leader. In a seminar for CEOs, Professor Ram Charan was asked: “What one quality do you look for in a Fortune 100 company when searching for a business leader?” He answered “bandwidth”. Many attendees fell because they expected a deeper answer.


Resilience is when people are able face difficult situations and overcome them with ease. It’s the ability to use challenges for growth. Today, rapid and disruptive change is the norm. Corporations need people who can bounce back, deal with change, and then reset their course of actions to re-engage their efforts. Resilience means being able to tap into your reserves of strength in adverse circumstances. These people are at least twice as likely to achieve their potential, I believe. Each year, I attempt at least one difficult mountain trek. I pick the one that seems the most difficult. Every day when I feel that I cannot go any further, I remind myself that I have 2x potential. I know that I can do the second half of the trek if I put my mind to it. That is how I manage to finish every day’s hike. Sportpersons are constantly practicing resilience training and pushing themselves beyond their limits.

Leadership EQ

Daniel Goleman believes that emotions play a powerful role in leadership. This is true not only in tangibles like better business results but also in intangibles like higher morale and motivation. High leadership EQ people also display trust, integrity, and conscientiousness.

Jim Collins, Good to Great’s Level 5 Leader, says that leaders are a paradoxical combination of professional will and personal humility.


High-potential employees are passionate about their work and about reaching success. Steve Jobs stated in one of his talks that successful people have passion about their work and love it. This makes it easy to endure the hard work.

Jim Collins shared the same sentiments, writing that “Level 5 leaders, who are driven and infected by an insatiable need to produce results, are fanatically obsessed.”

Andy Grove, the CEO of Intel Corpn, famously stated that “Only the paranoid can survive.” He also wrote a book with this title.

Business leaders who are successful and collaborative are highly focused on executing and very focused on achieving their goals.


A high-potential person is also known for their desire to learn and grow, which is especially important today in an environment of rapid change. Because they love the possibility to learn and are open to new experiences, they will take on challenging projects that challenge their abilities. They are driven to innovate, and they want to make a difference in the world. This trait was evident in my early engineering years, when I was selling a new technology to India.