18 Characteristics of Charismatic Leadership

11 min read

Charismatic leadership is the main leadership style that is required for most businesses and groups. Even if some other leadership style is required in some cases, charismatic leadership is also crucial for sustainability and growth.

There are many traits that a person must have to be a charismatic leader. And usually, these leaders are born with that “it” factor to be charismatic leaders. Otherwise, this type of leadership can be developed. There are a plethora of traits that this type of leader must have. These traits include the following.

Confidence

Confidence is one of the main traits that most successful and powerful leaders possess. These people usually control their emotions and rarely show self-doubt.

Charismatic leaders are truly confident. So, instead of looking at things as half-empty, they look at things as half-full. Additionally, they don’t try to be someone else, and they know and understand themselves well. Also, charismatic leaders are secure and confident enough to be comfortable in their own skin.

So, to be a strong leader, you must practice self-confidence. The more you practice, the more you’ll get better at this extraordinary trait. You must not be shy among your colleagues or uncertain about leading a project. And with this, you’ll be able to conquer through to a positive outcome.

Creativity

Charismatic leaders tend to think outside of the box and come up with creative solutions. They are also not afraid of risks. They will deal with problems head-on instead of succumbing to them. And thus, being innovative is required many times to solve problems, and thus results in a good business transformation.

Vision

Charismatic leaders are consistently looking to the future and looking for ways to improve it. They know what to strive for and thus pursue accordingly to achieve their goals. Charismatic leadership styles work to make the status quo better by transforming organizations into their vision.

A charismatic leader’s personal vision greatly influences his/her audience. According to “Entrepreneur” magazine, everything this leader does revolves around his/her vision.

Determination

This leader must be determined to achieve his/her goals and vision. They may run into challenges, but they push through. So, they may use creativity, confidence, and determination to tear down those roadblocks. And from there, they will set clear, purposeful goals to achieve results.

Communication

Charismatic leaders have extraordinary communication skills, and this trait is greatly needed to motivate employees and other groups. With it, they can encourage employees to remain grounded during good times and to press through during tough times. Also, these leaders can comfortably communicate in a group setting or one-to-one.

Being strong communicators, these leaders must be thoughtful in their communication and have the know-how to be deliberate. Thus said, they can use stories to make a clear point or message to others.

Also, one of their key elements in communication is to be kind and direct. They must be strong communicators who can articulate their vision in a meaningful way to their employees.

Maturity

A charismatic leader has a powerful personality, but he/she also has character and maturity. They will draw on the knowledge and wisdom they acquired through their business experiences and life throughout the years. Also, they maintain responsibility and maturity on all occasions.

Humility

Throughout their years of experience, charismatic leaders also gained, if they haven’t already had, a sense of humility. They place a lot of value on every employee and can truly listen to their concerns. They can do this without showing disdain or being judgemental towards them.

The charismatic leader can convince the employees of the value that they bring to the organization, and these leaders tell them how their contributions impact the strategic interests of the company. And as a result, they influence great loyalty from their employees.

Compassion

Powerful, charismatic leaders also have compassion. They must have charisma and compassion to birth forth goals, visions, etc. Having charisma may only lead to mere hero worship. So, a successful, charismatic leader will also possess and exhibit fortitude, honesty, integrity, and compassion as well.

Compassion is required in all types of leadership, but it tends to be a strong trait in the charismatic leadership style. And with a compassionate characteristic, this leader will have a mindset of wishing the best for others, have an awareness of others, and have the courage to take action.

A leadership coach, Lolly Daskal, stated that a compassionate leader understands that he/she must stop focusing on his/her egos. In doing this, they can develop other leaders.

Through compassion, this leader will cause a positive emotional state in employees. And as a result, these employees will focus and work together. They will remain focused on setting short and long-term goals, strive to attain them, and release the power of the organization.

Substance

You may have charisma with substance. However, it can only last for a very short time. Glitzy and flashy behavior may attract attention from others. However, something substantial must eventually be seen beneath the facade.

So, he/she must also walk the walk, not just talk the talk. So, while charm gets the leader face time, substance accomplishes the real deal.

Positive body language

Observant people notice that these types of leaders have open, warm, and positive behavior. These leaders make eye contact with others they are talking to, smiling with, and/or introducing themselves to. These people are also authentic and have an endearing swagger.

Listening skills

Charismatic leaders are also extremely good at listening. They are not distracted or don’t fidget. They pay attention to what is said and listen with interest. They are also engaged in conversation and are empathetic to others.

Self-monitoring

Charismatic leaders also watch and critique themselves. They have an awareness of their powerful personality and the fact that they are constantly watched by their followers.

So, they know that it’s important to portray a good image to their followers, which can only be achieved with self-monitoring.

Self-improvement

Self-improvement also goes hand-in-hand with self-monitoring in areas the leader may need to improve on. This leader knows that some of his/her qualities make him/her different from others. These qualities give this leader attention and make him/her charismatic.

The thing is, however, because they know they are getting a lot of attention, they always critique themselves. So, she/he knows how critical it is for continual self-improvement.

Emotive

Charismatic leaders also produce an emotional appeal. They can arouse and evoke great feelings among employees and their broader array of followers who have an emotional response.

They motivate employees by producing strong loyalties through connections of emotions. These emotions are then inspirational and lead to the chance to accomplish their own dreams.

These leaders motivate people by going beyond performance. They also motivate them with goal-setting issues to get to their employees' hearts.

Inspirational

Already touched on in the previously mentioned characteristics, charismatic leadership is inspirational. They uplift, and these leaders can go through a storm and come out of it on the other side. Sharing this story can encourage them so that they can get through the storm and come out on the other side.

So, if an individual is experiencing an emotional whirlwind and talks with a charismatic leader, this person will gain a sense of calm.

These leaders perceive trouble, but they also see opportunity. They have an uplifting perspective and contagious optimism.

The following story is a clear example of this trait in leadership. A charismatic leader helped to manage an organizational leadership transition that was planned but stressful. A new leader inherited a new organization and tons of unexpected challenges that came from it.

There was also tension among the senior staff, and that agitation was noticeable throughout the staff. Despite the challenges, the executive had total hope and thus persuasively and consistently communicated that hope.

And as a result, staff could see the possibility the moment the leader walked into a room and started to speak.

Courageous

This type of leadership is also courageous. He/she makes decisions that may be currently unpopular but are necessary and respectable in the future.

This story is a good example of this characteristic in leadership. Adele Lim, a screenwriter, recently stopped working on the “Crazy Rich Asians” sequel because of a disparity of grotesque pay.

Her pay for this project was $100,000, but her coworker, who is more acceptable in the dominated society, was paid $800,000. At the same time, this move was courageous but difficult.

For one, many competent and well-regarded writers may never obtain the opportunity to write for a huge series. Secondly, Lim turned down work by disclosing the disparity in her pay, and she publicly acknowledged that she was paid an eighth of what her coworker made.

When a person discusses pain, there is a sense of shame felt. Nevertheless, Lim pressed through the pain and stood her ground courageously. And as a result, women, generally, benefited from her stance.

Another similar example is the story of Mo’Nique, an Oscar-winning actress and comedian. In 2018, Mo’Nique urged a Netflix boycott due to what she said was race and gender discrimination. She stated that Netflix offered her $500,000 while allegedly offering $13 million to actress Amy Schumer.

This situation could be a bit much for individuals who never came close to $500,000. Nevertheless, by displaying courage and resolve, Mo’Nique refused Netflix’s offer.

Courage is among admirable values, and it stands out due to the difficulty of practicing it consistently. Some people may start out having the intent of being courageous, but then they may succumb to public pressure.

They may also succumb to the pressure of their employer, friends, and social media followers, or other authoritative positions in their lives. Nevertheless, these leaders are bold and courageous. They will take on principled positions even to others' vexation.

Original

Charismatic leadership also includes originality. Instead of trying to mimic others, they break the matrix. Originality is very rare, and thus it’s refreshing to those who see it.

The originality of charismatic leaders often glows due to them being comfortable in being their natural selves. They feel like being themselves is their best self.

Also, they always believe they are good enough and not convinced otherwise. And hence, their belief in themselves allows originality, and they encourage others to do the same. They also have a unique technique of translating common occurrences.

Likable

These leaders are also likable. Some candidates soar among the masses, while others can hardly gain likeability among most voters. Candidates may have similar accomplishments, backgrounds, and policy positions.

However, one candidate may be incredibly popular among the masses and thus won’t have struggles with convincing individuals. On the other hand, others immensely struggle to be noticed and taken seriously.

Likability is a powerful aspect of leaders. People listen to and even elect a person who they want to be like and who they consider a hero or role model. They see and admire their charisma, and they trust them to get the job done.

Likability is a powerful aspect of leaders. People listen to and even elect a person who they want to be like and who they consider a hero or role model. They see and admire their charisma, and they trust them to get the job done.

Charismatic leaders reflect their followers' aspirations. Their core trait is likeability.

Introverts like charismatic leaders and see them as those with whom they would like to hang out. Extroverts like them and want to get a drink with them.

Being likable is very important, and it’s hard to find a charismatic leader who is not likable. Charisma is the glow, and being likable is the hand. And thus, these two aspects accompany each other.

Conclusion

Charismatic leadership includes confidence, flair, and a sense of style. To be a strong leader, you must practice self-confidence. The more you practice, the more you’ll get better at this extraordinary trait.

You must not be shy among your colleagues or uncertain about leading a project.

Charismatic leaders tend to think outside of the box and come up with creative solutions. Charismatic leaders are consistently looking to the future and looking for ways to improve it. This leader must be determined to achieve his/her goals and vision. Charismatic leaders have extraordinary communication skills, which are greatly needed to motivate employees and other groups.

He/she has a powerful personality, but he/she also has character and maturity. And throughout their years of experience, charismatic leaders also gained a sense of humility.

They have compassion, charisma with substance, and open, warm, and positive behavior. Additionally, these leaders must be extremely good at listening, critiquing themselves, and continually improving themselves.

These leaders produce an emotional appeal and thus are inspirational. These leaders perceive trouble, but they also see opportunity. So, they must be courageous, regardless of what negative outcome may occur.

They know that that must be their natural selves to be their best self. Also, being likable goes a long way in this form of leadership. Likability is a powerful aspect of leaders.

People listen to and even elect a person who they want to be like and who they consider a hero or role model. They see and admire their charisma, and they trust them to get the job done.

The originality of charismatic leaders often glows due to them being comfortable in being their natural selves. They feel like being themselves is their best self.

Charismatic leaders reflect their followers' aspirations. Their core trait is likeability. Introverts like charismatic leaders and see them as those with whom they would like to hang out. Extroverts like them and want to get a drink with them.

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