Lists of leader traits are by no means exhaustive. There are many ways that traits can surface as useful to leadership.
Some people focus on Demographic, task competence and interpersonal leadership. For the demographics category, gender has by far received the most attention in terms of leadership; however, most scholars have found that male and female leaders are both equally effective. Task competence relates to how individuals approach the execution and performance of tasks. And, interpersonal attributes are related to how a leader approaches social interactions.
There are also studies about Distal (trait-focused) an proximal (state-focused) .
Recent research has shifted from focusing solely on dispositional or trait-like characteristics of leaders to more malleable, state-like differences often in the form of knowledge and skills.
The hope is that research into these theories will help answer the ancient question:
Are leaders born or made?
Traits that effective leaders, whether natural or out of necessity, share include:
- creativity, and
And, regarding the more outward-facing, situational skills, effective leaders exhibit mastery of:
- interpersonal skills,
- oral communication,
- written communication,
- management skills,
- problem-solving skills, and