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What’s the Most Important Leadership Quality to Have Right Now?

What’s the Most Important Leadership Quality to Have Right Now?
Tolerance

Dealing with so many issues, personalities and opinions has required me to look within myself to remain calm. Dealing with all of the surrounding uncertainty while trying to remain patient and diligent has been difficult, but it is the only way we are able to move forward. We have had many one-on-one (virtual) meetings with leadership just to listen to their struggles so they are able to let go of frustration. While our employees have different things that motivate them and make efforts to balance work and the outside factors that affect performance, it has all required a great deal of tolerance.

Christine Meyer
President, Battaglia Electric Inc. | New Castle, DE
Vistage member since 2020
Connection

Calm, thoughtful connection with staff, customers and vendors. A willingness to lead your team’s participation in analyses and decision-making, providing them with the opportunity to be heard and to listen to others around them. We all need connection and relevance, these days especially.

Joanne Montagner-Hull
Owner/President, Your Bean Counters | Cleveland, OH
Vistage member since 2013
Empathy

I believe the most important leadership quality to have right now is empathy. Being empathetic and showing your employees that you can understand their challenges is always important. With the pandemic and social unrest in our world, leaders must show empathy for what their teammates are enduring right now. People may not be doing well emotionally given the circumstances. A good leader will strive to understand their employees’ needs and show them they understand and care about what may be ailing them.

Mervyn Byrd
Chair | Pewaukee, WI
Vistage Chair since 2020
Response agility

During these unprecedented times, it’s definitely response agility. This includes responding to adversity, stress and pressure with power and ease; navigating change thoughtfully and effectively; taking ownership of your experiences; and recalibrating as needed.

Margaret Graziano
Founder/CEO KeenAlignment | San Jose, CA
Vistage member since 2018
Vision

The vision to see your organization through trying times. The vision to challenge yourself and your way of thinking and to be open to new ideas or perspectives. The understanding of where and how we live is being challenged on so many levels, and we need to be able to listen, read, inquire and challenge so that we can create our own visions for the future.

Eric Knaak
EVP & General Manager, Isaac Heating & Air Conditioning | Rochester, NY
Vistage member since 2010
Resilience

I would say resilience, by far. Many businesses are or have been on life support and need a leader who can weather the storm and stay focused on the future.

Mark Mitford
Managing Director, HR Catalyst Consulting | Grapevine, TX
Vistage member since 2016
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