The 10 Traits Every Leader Needs - And How to Measure Them

As leaders, we're constantly measuring our team's performance, but we mustn't forget to gauge our own performance as well.

There are certain traits a person needs to possess in order to be an effective leader.

As a leader, I hold the ultimate responsibility to the people I serve; the buck stops with me, which means I have the highest level of accountability to the leaders I serve.

As a servant leader, it’s my job to help my team become the best versions of themselves.

My job is to point out their greatness and help them grow it; to get the people I serve to see themselves in the best possible way so they can see and realize their own potential.

A big part of that is helping them determine both their leadership style and their leadership goals.

I am constantly gauging where I stand. As a leader, the easiest way to know where you stand is to gauge where your team stands.

One of the tools we’re using to that end at my company, Roma Moulding, is self-evaluation and team evaluations.

Over the last 90 days, we’ve conducted an exercise, asking each of our leaders to do a self-evaluation, gauging where they see themselves on each of ten critical leadership traits. We asked them to respond to the following questions with a rating, from one to ten, with one being “not at all” and ten being “extremely.”

• Do you live in Integrity? Are you Authentic?

• Are you Self-Aware?

• Are you Personable and Relatable?

• Are you an effective Communicator?

• Are you Inspirational and Educational?

• Are you Empathetic and Compassionate?

• Are you Self-Confident?

• Are you Focused and Aligned?

• Are you Open-minded and Creative?

• Are you Invested in your Team and in Yourself?

The goal was to have them pause and be both intentional and introspective about where they stand. And, of course, we kept the results were kept confidential so it could be a true and honest self-evaluation.

The results and the feedback have been great. Numbers like this tell a story. They help identify gaps as a leadership team, a lot like the Pulse surveys we send out company wide three times a year.

The worst thing you can do with a survey is to do nothing with the results, good, bad, or neutral.

We use results like this to look at areas we can really focus in on and this is one of the deep dives we’ve taken.

The second phase is to have the people who report to each leader to evaluate them on the same traits.

We can then use the combined numbers to identify our superpowers as a group as well as our weaknesses.

All of this data is being used to plan our upcoming annual Leadership Conference in early October.

Our goal in doing this is to find the areas where we need to improve both collectively and individually, and be intentional about lifting each other up, building on our strengths and improving our efficacy as leaders.


Use the self-evaluation above on yourself and have your leadership team complete it as well. Don’t rush through it. Take some time to reflect and be intentional and honest in your answers.

Then give the same survey to your leadership team and those you directly supervise to evaluate you. Make it as TRULY anonymous as possible or you won’t get honest responses.

Have your leadership team do the same with those they supervise.

Then, compare the results. Pay particular attention to any major disconnects you find between the self-evaluation and the team evaluations of their leaders.

Those are places to do an extra deep dive. If your CFO thinks they’re extremely self-aware, but their team only ranked them a 3 overall, it’s important to figure out why. If you rank yourself a 9 as an effective communicator, but your team only ranks you at a 4, you’ve got some work to do to close that gap.

And remember, YOU, as the leader of your team, can never have a higher score than your team as a whole.

It’s important to look at your own leadership on an individual level just like your team, but you’re also the sum of the parts.

If your team’s combined score is a 7.8, you can’t be a 9 because you are a reflection of your team.

Tony Gareri

CEO & Culture Enthusiast

Drawing from firsthand experiences, Tony addresses how a culture evolution can lead to improved business results and happier work environments.

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