MY ESSAY WORD COUNT: 1700 (excluding the topics, short bio and references)
NATIONAL SECRETARY, GOOD GOVERNANCE AMBASSADORS OF NIGERIA
“Leadership is about making others better as a result of your presence and making sure that impact
lasts in your absence”. Sheryl Sanberg
For perfect understanding of a good leader, it is pertinent to discern what leadership is,
conceptually, leadership means the ability of an individual or groups of individuals to guide and
direct the affairs of an organization/nation. Most times, it is argued that leadership is inherent in
some individuals, the myth is not true because anyone can become a great leader, it is not
something you have to be born with— individuals develop the skills by themselves. You uncover
your leadership potential with inspiration from other outstanding leaders like Nelson Mandela,
George Washington, Mahatma Gandhi, just to mention a few, as you discover more about the
qualities of the great leader inside you. When you inspire positively, cumulate change by
empowering those around you to work toward common objectives, you are a leader. To be a great
leader is more about the inner qualities you possess than the designation you are given. Someone
who is in charge of managing people or heading a project, a genuine leader can inspire others to
accomplish something important.
Being a good leader is something you learn and cultivate with diligence, experience, persistence
and compassion. True leadership is about aspiring to become better in all areas of life and
empowering everyone around you to become the best versions of themselves. As a leader, you
need to have a strategic plan and vision, integrity, and empathy. You also need to take action and
inspire others to do the same, as well as delegate responsibilities so others can learn and grow.
Of all the leadership functions, political leaders are ever on top of everyone’s mind because they
are in the news every time for one reason or the other. All over the world, there are many aspiring
political leaders but unfortunately, there are few leaders who live up to the ethics and principles.
In some countries, Nigeria for instance, most political leaders lack the basic and significant
leadership qualities such as integrity, accountability, transparency and availability. Some of these
leaders even indulge in corruption and other illegal activities. In this contemporary generation the
word, “political leaders” has a negative opinion of the citizens, which is not a surprise.
Having responsible and empathetic politicians in the governing body is important as they are the
decision-makers of the country, state and other public affairs. They have the power to manage,
allot the economic resources, build relationships with stakeholders and make decisions that can
have a great impact on the well-being of a nation. As credible citizens, we expect our politicians
to focus more on long-term plans for the wellness of the nation than short-term plans.
Responsibility is one of the most significant leadership qualities. Most political leaders point
fingers at other leaders rather than taking the responsibility upon them. Leaders should
acknowledge other leaders’ contributions towards society. They should accept their own failure
and should always work towards their betterment.
Hence, to be a good leader, you need to have these qualities;
1.0 Effective Communication— Productive communication is crucial to gain trust, align efforts
in the quest for goals, and inspire positive change. Leadership communication is a type of
communication most commonly used by leaders to disseminate information about one’s culture,
core values, mission, and significant messages to build trust and encourage the citizens/workers.
Practically, this part of the leadership tool involves delivering a shared vision and inciting others
to buy into that vision. Additionally, a good leader makes sustainable and realistic promises.
2.0 Time Management— Being a good leader, your time devotion and management is very
necessary because leaders have various demands on their limited time. Time keeps getting away
and they have trouble regulating it. No matter what their position, they cannot stop time, they
cannot slow it down, nor can they speed it up. Thus, time needs to be effectively managed to be
an effective leader.
3.0 Conflict Resolution— As illustrated above, leadership encompasses doing things others do
not like to do and one of those things is conflict resolution. A good leader does not take what is
similar to his views as facts, and base his decisions on that. He or she uses credible and unalloyed
information to make judgements and to come up with resolutions. Thus, good leaders stand above
their own believes to observe events objectively while the general public fails to do so. In addition,
such leaders do not suffer from a self-serving bias. A good leader must develop self-awareness,
and be ready for the unexpected.
Apparently, there are strategies a leader could use to ensure there is peace during their tenure
and the strategies include;
• Do not ignore Conflict
• Clarify what the ssue is all about
• Bring involved parties together to talk to them
• Identify a solution to their conflict
• Continue to monitor and follow up on the conflict between the parties involved.
4.0 Employee Management— Leadership plays a critical role in knowing your employees and
managing them. Believe me, gone are the days when managers/leaders used to keep their
subordinates at arm’s length, effective communication and management are needed to promote coexistence in an organisation or a nation.
Some strategies to make this happen include;
• Set expectations and ensure that every employee under you is clear on what is expected of them
and their role in the workplace
• Reward employees, reward self-discipline when you see it in your employees
• Respect their privacy
• Provide training
• Be present and intervene when necessary.
5.0 Stress Management— Working all days without some rest jeopardizes one’s health. A leader
should adopt a routine break to assess stress signals and emotional needs. Leadership
communication needs messages conveyed with calm confidence, and a few minutes is sufficient
for a leader to take a break, take some breaths, and consider the next steps.
6.0 Advocacy— This is a political action by an individual or group. It strives to influence the
decisions made by political, economic, and social organizations, thus, a leader is an advocate.
Advocacy can include many activities that a person or organization does. It helps a leader to
achieve multiple tasks and create various levels of awareness in society. As a leader, having
advocacy skills is crucial because it helps you to bring people together around substantial issues
and compel them to action.
7.0 Effective Feedback— Another key factor of a good leader is that they can reach organizational
goals by motivating others. Giving positive feedback helps individuals grow by learning how they
can improve and by strengthening the activities they are doing well.
A good leader should make sure their feedback is objective and not subjective. A leader should
target behaviours and not the person in the sector. Leaders should keep the feedback congruous
and always affirm positive behaviours they want to be reiterated.
8.0 Delegation— Delegating the leadership approach is a low task and relationship behaviour
approach to leadership where a leader empowers an individual to exercise some functions.
Employing this approach is important because you cannot do everything alone. Delegating
empowers your team, builds trust, and assists with professional development. This approach helps
a leader to find out how to identify who is best suited to tackle some tasks or projects. Encouraging
those you lead to progress by setting high yet reasonable expectations. Give others challenges that
will put them out of their comfort zone and reach for the next level of feat. Good leaders celebrate
and reward the achievements of those they lead while also urging them to continue to reach higher.
9.0 Change Management— The function of leadership in change management compels that you
help people buy into your vision for the organization. Your message needs to be apparent and
consistent. A leader implementing some changes in an organisation should be able to answer the
• Raised— Who raised or suggested the change?
• Reason— What is the reason for the change?
• Return— What return is required from the change?
• Risks— What are the risks involved in the change?
• Resources—What resources are required to deliver the change?
Proper handling of these questions would make the involved sectors or the team of the organisation
buy into the change without further ado.
10.0 Goals Setting— This is conspicuously important in leadership as it helps the leaders stay
focused on what truly matters in their nation/organization. Being a leader, setting goals equals
having a bigger picture, a vision that he or she wants to get to. When you set the SMART (S—
Specific, M— Measurable, A— Achievable, R— Realistic, T— Time) goals, you have a bulls-eye
that they know to focus and prioritize, keeping your world in order. Goals setting include;
• Demonstrate personal responsibilities
• Practice self-discipline
• Develop active listening skills
• Expand and diversify knowledge
• Focus on time management
• Creating a culture of mentorship
• Improve communication practices
• Practice big-picture thinking
Similarly, good leaders focus on the possibilities of the future instead of the problems of the past.
As a good leader, you should have a vision for what you want to achieve, and create goals as your
stepping stones to get there. Good leaders also keep an eye on trends and make educated
predictions of future opportunities that will put them ahead of the competition.
11.0 Project Planning— The function of leadership in project management entails a broad range
of activities, including effective planning, task coordination, overseeing projects, inciting team
members, and making excellent decisions to set up a plan of action for project implementation.
Excellent planning is important in leadership for the successful execution of projects.
Conclusively, a leader with integrity is honest, responsible, loyal, creative, inclusive, hardworking, and respectful. People will follow you when you invariably exhibit these qualities,
regardless of your official job title. When you have integrity, you admit when you make mistakes
and use the experiences to learn and grow. Also, regardless of political parties and opinions, all
leaders should work with a range of other people to attain the greatest good for the general public.
A good leader is capable of visualizing the needs of the people from different angles and planning
things accordingly. This would enable the proper distribution of improvement and ensure efficient