10 Qualities of the Lazy Leader

May 18, 2021 2 min read
10 Qualities of the Lazy Leader

What are the qualities of a lazy leader? Here’s a list of qualities I reckon you need to lead. I think they account for most situations.

In The One Minute Manager, we learn about two dimensions of team leadership: directive and supportive behaviour, and that the effective leader changes their style to meet the changing needs of the team.

Situational leadership theory takes us on a journey of group development. What’s needed is an appropriate leadership style that complements the person and the situation. The styles a leader uses to manage the team may include telling and directing, selling and coaching, facilitating and supporting, or delegating. But what qualities does the lazy leader need to display? What traits does the situational leader need?

trait n. A distinguishing feature, as of a person’s character.

Qualities of a Lazy Leader

Here’s a list of qualities I reckon you need to lead. I think they account for most situations.

When the great leaders work is done the people say, “We did that ourselves!” – Lao Tsu
  1. Appreciative: The lazy leader values the team and the person, and recognizes that to achieve success, we need the support of others. And genuine appreciation is not a simple “thank you”, but also provides encouragement, develops confidence, and builds on strengths.
  2. Confident: Trust and confidence in leadership is a reliable indicator of employee satisfaction. Lazy leaders aren’t afraid of being challenged. Their confidence inspires.
  3. Compassionate: Compassion is a strength. The lazy leader uses compassion to perceive the needs of those they lead and to decide a course of action that is of the greatest benefit to the person and the team.
  4. Courageous: Perhaps I should have put this at the top of my list? The lazy leader takes risks when no one else will. The lazy leader is courageous and has faith in other people. A courageous leader raises difficult issues, is ready to give difficult feedback, and share unpopular opinions.
  5. Diligent: To persevere in conviction, courage, creativity, compassion, and character we need diligence. Lazy leaders work hard.
  6. Fair: Fairness is what people want. Lazy leaders don’t have favourites in the team. They reward for results, not partiality; they promise fairness.
  7. Flexible: The lazy leader can flex. They alter and adapt their style according to the situation, context, and circumstances they experience. They welcome new ideas and change.
  8. Honest: Lazy leaders are not afraid of communicating the truth to their people. Honesty is about being truthful, having integrity, and building trust. Honesty leads to better, more productive relationships.
  9. Impartial: Lazy leaders are impartial. They recognize their biases, prejudices, and predispositions. They also recognize biases in others and face them.
  10. Responsive: Lazy leaders are responsive to the needs of those they lead. They adjust their behaviour to best match the situation. They listen to their team, and they value their team.

What qualities would you add? You are welcome to share your ideas in the comments.

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