Strategic Leadership - Definition and Qualities of a Strategic Leader

Strategic leadership refers to a manager’s potential to express a strategic vision for the organization, or a part of the organization, and to motivate and persuade others to acquire that vision. Strategic leadership can also be defined as utilizing strategy in the management of employees. It is the potential to influence organizational members and to execute organizational change. Strategic leaders create organizational structure, allocate resources and express strategic vision. Strategic leaders work in an ambiguous environment on very difficult issues that influence and are influenced by occasions and organizations external to their own.

The main objective of strategic leadership is strategic productivity. Another aim of strategic leadership is to develop an environment in which employees forecast the organization’s needs in context of their own job. Strategic leaders encourage the employees in an organization to follow their own ideas. Strategic leaders make greater use of reward and incentive system for encouraging productive and quality employees to show much better performance for their organization. Functional strategic leadership is about inventiveness, perception, and planning to assist an individual in realizing his objectives and goals.

Strategic leadership requires the potential to foresee and comprehend the work environment. It requires objectivity and potential to look at the broader picture.

A few main traits / characteristics / features / qualities of effective strategic leaders that do lead to superior performance are as follows:

Loyalty- Powerful and effective leaders demonstrate their loyalty to their vision by their words and actions.
Keeping them updated- Efficient and effective leaders keep themselves updated about what is happening within their organization. They have various formal and informal sources of information in the organization.
Judicious use of power- Strategic leaders makes a very wise use of their power. They must play the power game skillfully and try to develop consent for their ideas rather than forcing their ideas upon others. They must push their ideas gradually.
Have wider perspective/outlook- Strategic leaders just don’t have skills in their narrow specialty but they have a little knowledge about a lot of things.
Motivation- Strategic leaders must have a zeal for work that goes beyond money and power and also they should have an inclination to achieve goals with energy and determination.
Compassion- Strategic leaders must understand the views and feelings of their subordinates, and make decisions after considering them.
Self-control- Strategic leaders must have the potential to control distracting/disturbing moods and desires, i.e., they must think before acting.
Social skills- Strategic leaders must be friendly and social.
Self-awareness- Strategic leaders must have the potential to understand their own moods and emotions, as well as their impact on others.
Readiness to delegate and authorize- Effective leaders are proficient at delegation. They are well aware of the fact that delegation will avoid overloading of responsibilities on the leaders. They also recognize the fact that authorizing the subordinates to make decisions will motivate them a lot.
Articulacy- Strong leaders are articulate enough to communicate the vision(vision of where the organization should head) to the organizational members in terms that boost those members.
Constancy/ Reliability- Strategic leaders constantly convey their vision until it becomes a component of organizational culture.

To conclude, Strategic leaders can create vision, express vision, passionately possess vision and persistently drive it to accomplishment.



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