10 Signs They Are Not A Good Leader

not-a-leaderMost of us have worked for leaders that are for all intents and purposes are not very good.  I actually learned a lot in my early days of leadership from some really bad leaders.  Not only were they bad leaders, they were oblivious to the negative affects of their poor leadership.   There are many signs that a leader is not a good leader and I have identified 10 Signs below. 

The reason I attribute these signs to not being a “Good Leader” is because a leader has to at least reach the mantle of being a “Good Leader” before they can be a “Great Leader”  Here are 10 Signs They Are Not A Good Leader… Remember “They” could be you! 

  1. they are not willing to fail.
  2. they only talk and never listen.
  3. they don’t develop and produce other leaders.
  4. they micro-manage; that’s management not leadership.
  5. they are insecure or threatened by someone that they lead.
  6. they are not willing to follow and learn from those that they lead.
  7. they are more focused on what people think about the results, than the results themselves.
  8. they don’t truly care about the people they lead and have difficulty getting people to follow.
  9. they are willing to make the wrong decision, because of the fear of  fall-out from making the right decision.
  10. they only dream about being like so and so, instead of {humbly} dreaming about a bunch of so and so’s dreaming about being like them.  Go Lead…Transcend The Isms 

They either “don’t do” or “are not working towards” the 5 Things Next-Level Leaders Alaways Do!

Share your thoughts on any of these “10 Signs” and add to the list!

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  • mark

    # 10 seems like it should be focused on Jesus. As a leader, I should be concerned that people are being like Jesus, not me, becaue I fail all the time. I’m not the goal or the focus, Jesus is.

  • hmm…interesting how they all revolve around ego! 🙂

  • This list is like throwing a rock into a pack of dogs…the one that yelps the loudest, got hit! All the managers will yelp, but leaders will be affirmed for their leadership.

  • Scott Williams

    Mark- I totally agree that’s where the {humbly} part comes in. If you are exhibiting Christ-Like leadership, you should want others to see the Christ in you and in your leadership.
    heathero- 😉 hmm
    Jimbotts- Great analogy… I’ve worked with Dogs that don’t realize they are dogs, let alone realize they got hit. oblivious narcisism is what my colleague in correcions called it.

  • Chiny

    Awesome blog today….I struggle everyday (for the last 11 years) with the management here at my job. There’s so much struggle here on who has more power than who, who is right, who is wrong, who got who…I feel like I am in elementary school all over again. I love leadership and I love John Maxwell’s book on the 21 irrefutable laws of leadership. Keep doing what you’re doing Pastor Williams….Sharisse (amooyoung’s sister)

  • Brother, those are some strong words! I have a short list of people that I wish would read this and find the right conviction and motivation to change. Thanks for this powerful post!

  • solidgrace

    If you can’t change someone write about them. Wait, if you cant do it yourself, point it out. Wait, if you want people to change make them feel bad… Nevermind, not coming out write as I right..

  • kpmartin13@cox.net

    … interesting point! It’s very difficult being a leader sometimes especially when we try so hard not to fail. I think a good “leadership convention” & observatory conference session would be a wonderful start. ~Kim

  • Scott. I’m having a crush on this blog post. Thanks brother.

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  • These are spot on. I’ve seen these displayed and have displayed these qualities at various times along the way.

    They are similar to a free ebook I wrote a little while back called “31 Refutably Irrefutable Laws of Lame Leadership” that you might like.(Don’t want to come across as spam so I won’t post the link. If you’d like to see it, just Google the title to find it on Scribd or Slideshare.)

    Thanks for all of your great insights on leadership, Scott!

  • Rebecca

    I have been told I am a leader, but I never considered myself a leader. Maybe I need to think about this more seriously.

  • Interesting 10 things list. On No.1 My question is should a leader be willing to fail? I don”t think so. I believe a leader should accept failure as a process of growth only. No.6 I agree a leader should be able to learn from those who follow a leader, but not to follow those who you lead, if you are the leader.
    Was No.9 suppose to say, “they are not…” as opposed to, “they are…”.
    I did get the jist of your post. Thanks for sharing

  • Wonderful blog!
    I, like alot of others feel 100% in agreement with you.
    Leaders are meant to influence, not dictate.
    You’ve summed up their qualities quite well.
    God bless you.

  • most of people are like that. Thats why we need a transformational leader. hope can be like one.

  • Nice shoes in a very unreasonable price

  • april11

    I do agree with all the things you have mentioned about on how to identify a good leader from someone who is not. To be a leader comes with big responsibilities so it is very important to have all the characters a good leader should have. Good leader is what the world needs right now and even in small groups, in business firms, or even in a group, having a good leader is vital.

  • If you can’t change someone write about them. Wait, if you cant do it yourself, point it out. Wait, if you want people to change make them feel bad

  • Cynthia Mason

    Being a leader requires that a person have human skills. In other words, they have to be a people person. I have worked within a few organizations which had people placed in managerial positions, yet they lacked the proper leadership skills necessary to be an effective leader.

    My definition of an effective leader is an exemplary leader. I seen some really bad managers and some really good ones. However, I have met only two extraordinary leaders. One of those leaders was a woman. She is the CFO of an organization. Her management style reminded somewhat of me of Herb Kelleher. If any of you are familiar with Herb, you know what I am talking about.

    I have seen an organization stay intact due to exemplary leadership.
    I have also seen an organization suffer due to poor leadership. The organization that did poorly, was due to lack of adequate staff and no human resources programs put in place (such as team-building, training and development).

    I recommend that all leaders take leadership training. When you become a senior staff member, the training does not stop. When you become a CEO, the training does not stop. You have to be willing to stretch your mind. This means stretching your skills.

    Leaders are visionaries. A leader’s job is to paint a clear picture of that vision while inspiring people to go beyond doing achieving just the minimal task of doing just fine. Extraordinary leaders challenge the process, develop people, motivate staff, and display high integrity. They are open (meaning approachable), friendly, firm but not rigid…
    They walk the walk and talk the talk….

    Extraordinary leaders change their management style to fit the situation as required because not all situations call for the same action.

    You would be amazed what employees will do for the organization when you learn to become an exemplary leader.

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