As you go about your daily business day, you work with many people who don’t hold leadership positions, but would make great leaders. What are some traits to look for in potential leadership candidates?

They Work Hard

As obvious as this may seem, it is the most important trait to look for in a potential leadership candidate. If someone is not working hard in their current position, they more than likely won’t put forth the effort in a leadership role where it is required. How can you recognize hard work? Look for employees who consistently provide quality work. Look for employees who stay fifteen minutes late to finish wrapping up a project rather than leave the second the clock hits five. Hard work is easy to recognize and you will want to be on the lookout for that first and foremost.

They Seek and Implement Feedback

Many people falsely believe that by asking for help or critique, they are showing weakness. In fact, employees who seek out feedback and accept critique are exactly the employees you will want to move into leadership roles. Feedback can be difficult to hear and even more difficult to put into place, so if you have an employee actively seeking feedback, you know they are a quality candidate for a leadership position in the future.

They Surround Themselves with Quality People

You can often tell the quality of a person by the company they keep. When looking for potential new leadership members, pay attention to who they spend their time with while in the office. Do you see them gossiping frequently with others or do you see them in productive conversations with other respected employees? Take note of these interactions. Future leaders will surround themselves with other people who are honest and hard-working.

As you grow your business, you will want to pinpoint future leaders within the company. When you grow your business internally, you already know the employee well and have formed a relationship. When on the lookout for future leaders in your company, pay attention to their work ethic, how they receive and implement feedback and what type of people they choose to surround themselves with. All of these are important factors when considering the leadership potential of an employee.