Great leaders have a lot in common. I have been reading Great by Choice (Jim Collins), which discusses the personality traits common among the most successful CEOs in the country. Things like goal setting, creativity and healthy paranoia are highlighted. As a business coach and leadership trainer, I have worked with many successful CEOs. Based on my experience, I’d like to add to the conversation with three things that the great leaders would never, ever do:

  1. Pass the buck. The buck stops with the leader. That’s what they are getting paid for, and if something goes wrong within the team they innately understand that it is their responsibility and no one else’s. Great leaders never blame others. I think this is especially important for young managers and mid-level team leaders to remember. Great leaders at all levels don’t play the blame game.
  2. Say, “I’m too busy.” A leader’s primary responsibility is to set their employees up for success. Period. If employees need help, have questions or want to share their ideas, great leaders always have time and an open door.
  3. Spend, spend, spend. Great leaders understand that spending company money is a highly visible responsibility, and that they set the example for everyone else. I’ve seen leaders and company owners spend money like drunken sailors and guess what? So do their employees.  At the end of the year when accounting shows them the damage, they have no one to blame but themselves.
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    Howard Shore

    Howard Shore is a business growth expert who works with companies that want to maximize their growth potential by improving strategy, enhancing their knowledge, and improving motivation. To learn more about him or his firm please visit his website at or contact Howard Shore at (305) 722-7216 or

    3 Responses to “Three Things Great Leaders Never Do”

    1. Giselle says:

      Being a leader is never easy and actually, it doesn’t mean that we can do anything because we are a leader.. And these tips can help..
      Giselle recently posted…How To Overcome AnxietyMy Profile

    2. Rene says:

      I totally agree with the blame game but one thing great leaders (managers) also do is then pass the credit onto their team when it comes and seem to take little of it themselves. The upper level management know that the “leaders” are the ones who caused the actions to take place but the team also know they did the donkey work to get it there.

      It works both ways, nice post!
      Rene recently posted…The tinnitus blogMy Profile

    3. VaNessa says:

      Great article!
      1. Responsibility goes with authority in healthy business environments. When in charge and a mistake is made, this is the perfect time to be a role model, preferable an accountable one. The key about leaders is if they find out they made a decision with a bad outcome, is to reconsider options, make a different decision and take action. You keep the ball in motion in a sports game and successful business needs forward direction.
      2. Saying you’re too busy means you’re priorities have shifted. Everyone is busy, and business feedback is a priority, clients, internal and external customers. If you’re in a leadership role, then successful investments need to be made for everyone. Bad news and good news is how you keep your pulse on what’s driving your business.
      3. Fiscal Responsibility is key! Listen to the “Donald” when he asks if you finish a project within or under budget!?! If you go over the budget, “You’re Fired!” How can you spend money you don’t have and can’t leverage effectively in business with profit? You can’t afford not to!
      Look forward to your next article. Thanks for posting this!

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