18 Things Respected Well-Liked Leaders Consistently Do | #leadership

Respected Well-Liked Leaders: The Things They Always Do

I continue to hear leaders say they must choose between being respected and being liked. The good news is it’s not true. Moreover, it is important not to trade one for the other. Respected well-liked leaders inspire, engage, and foster organizational success.

Respected Well-Liked Leaders: Plaque Says Humanity Love Respect

Respected Well-Liked Leaders: The Things They Consistently Do. Image by B.S. Wise via Flickr Creative Commons License.

Image by B.S. Wise via Flickr Creative Commons License.

Respected Well-Liked Leaders: 18 Things They Consistently Do!

  1. Respected well-liked leaders are like-able but they don’t seek to be liked at every moment. They don’t avoid situations just to be liked.

  2. They communicate with honesty and civility not bluntness and disdain.

  3. Respected well-liked leaders take time to get to know people. They don’t come on at the beginning like everyone’s best friend. They show comfort in leadership and over time in friendship.

  4. Respected well-liked leaders appreciate and recognize effort and talent as much as results and success. They understand and accept the human need for appreciation and encouragement. Leaders who think that praise weakens teams weaken their teams by skipping the praise.

  5. They are confident and humble. Respected well-liked leaders illustrate how to be self-assured while sharing the spotlight with others. They are selfless not faceless.

  6. They are open-minded not indecisive. They listen and consider many views and weigh in with their expertise. They know that empowerment is not abandonment. They know when to tell, when to ask; when to wait and when to take action.

  7. In difficult moments, they give empathy as well as possible solutions. Respected leaders use their expertise and vision to solve problems. Respected well-liked leaders attend to the human needs as well.

  8. Respected well-liked leaders rise above their own pet peeves. By focusing on others’ needs instead of their own personal preferences, leaders become respected as well as liked. Those who constantly expect everyone to cater to their personal preferences are disrespected and disliked.

  9. They improve their high emotional intelligence every day. Respected well-liked leaders develop their social skills to greet people warmly. They evolve their self-awareness to be the model of self-regulation.

  10. Respected well-liked leaders are optimistic and realistic. They have healthy skepticism without being pessimistic and jaded.

  11. They create an environment where it is safe to innovate and change. Change can be scary. Respected well-liked leaders don’t quarantine their courage. They make it contagious!

  12. They show up fully for themselves and others every day. They energize others and model true contribution.

  13. Respected well-liked leaders live and exhibit love of diversity. They don’t create clones; they spot and develop diverse talent. Who wouldn’t respect and like that!

  14. Respected well-liked leaders put the “we go” before the ego.

  15. They put themselves on the line with their teams. They address unfairness, bullying, cliques, chronic complainers, and slackers. You never hear them say, “just work it out yourselves.”

  16. Respected well-liked leaders seek and inspire excellence, not perfectionism. Their reasonableness has room for forgiveness that develops a valuable culture of learning and accountability.

  17. Respected well-liked leaders are a buoy (not the buoy) of inspiration and balance. Their energy and light guide everyone from the gray zone of confusion to the end zone of success. The team members then buoy each other.

  18. They communicate very well. Their words and tone inspire greatness without leaving scars. They reach others they don’t preach to others. They call everyone to change and grow while honoring who they are. This is why these leaders are respected and well-liked.

What is your fav on this list & what would you add to this list?

From my professional experience to your success,
Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™

Related Posts:
Leadership Video (2.5 min): Be A Buoy of Inspiration & Balance
Leaders, 10 Ways to Ignite Greatness Without Leaving Scars
Leadership: People Skills to Reverse a Hostile Workplace

©2015 Kate Nasser, CAS, Inc. Somerville, NJ. I appreciate your sharing the link to this post on your social streams. However, if you want to re-post or republish the content of this post, please email info@katenasser.com for permission and guidelines. Thank you for respecting intellectual capital.

Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™, delivers coaching, consulting, training, and keynotes on leading change, employee engagement, teamwork, and delivering the ultimate customer service. She turns interaction obstacles into interpersonal success. See this site for workshop outlines, keynote footage, and customer results.




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~Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™

27 Responses to “18 Things Respected Well-Liked Leaders Consistently Do | #leadership”

  1. Khalid says:

    Bravo Kate 🙂

    My favorite was this “Respected well-liked leaders put the “we go” before the ego.”


    • Kate Nasser says:

      Many thanks Khalid. Leaders whose egos dominate drive away those who would otherwise commit and contribute a great deal.

      I hope this post gives all leaders pause to reflect and recommit to being respected and well-liked! So many think they can’t do both.

      Grateful regards,

  2. Hi Kate

    Thanks for sharing this timely post. It’s a well thought out list and my favourite is also the one Khalid mentioned. I would add “Respected well-liked leaders esteem others better than themselves.” Guess this ties in nicely too with “we go” before the ego.

    • Kate Nasser says:

      Hi Yvonne,
      Sure seems like esteem and respect are becoming the underlying theme of this post and all comments. Many thanks for adding your voice to this discussion!

      Warmest wishes,

  3. Jon Mertz says:


    A key list. One to add is respected leaders solve problems and empower others to do the same. In other words, respected leaders move forward and tap the talent of others to do the same.



  4. Dave Moore says:

    A great list Kate
    All the points outline a well formed Leader who communicates but can be communicated to. Inclusion is a key factor for me. No surprises for the team. Amaze them, yes. But surprises always seem to be linked to spur of the moment and that doesn’t instill confidence.

    As I said, great list and I have shared all points of the compass.


    • Kate Nasser says:

      Great point Dave. When surprises mean the leader hasn’t communicated, it detracts and destabilizes. Amaze yes — confuse no!

      Thanks so much for adding your voice to this discussion.


  5. Ted Coine says:

    Kate, this is brilliant – I can’t begin to tell you which one is my favorite, because it’s absolutely which ones – five or six stand out for me!

    What you’re writing about with your opening line, about leaders feeling the need to choose between being respected and liked? That’s dinosaur (aka Industrial Age) thinking if ever I saw it! The nice thing about leading in the Social Age is, good leadership is finally being recognized as tied to superior business performance (which it always was, mind you). This either/or thing? Maybe it should be phrased like this, instead:

    “I must choose between being respected AND liked AND successful in my leadership role, or being none of those things.”

    I like this post so much, I’m going to meddle it! It reminds me of a leadership lesson I learned from my childhood swim coach…

    • Kate Nasser says:

      Love your “AND” thinking Ted. It’s about doing all those things — not choosing!

      Thank you so much for adding dimension to this post.

  6. Awesome post, as always.
    I really like this one “They create an environment where it is safe to innovate and change.”
    That’s a lot harder to achieve than most think. No matter how open you are and how much you encourage feedback and innovation, it’s tough to make sure people are comfortable enough to share all their ideas.

    • Kate Nasser says:

      Dear Aurelie,
      I agree that it is one of the more complicated ones to create yet very doable. And what a difference it makes in org. success!

      I am honored that you shared your view and always welcome your insights!

  7. Aly Moreno says:

    Well-Liked Leaders: never scorn anybody ever

  8. Kathy Codman says:

    Thank you Kate- I really appreciate the list, and the opportunity to reflect on my own abilities as a leader. My favorite is “we go before ego”.

  9. Kate

    I have to “steal” from one of my favorite leaders, Ted Coine – I too cannot limit myself to simply one of your exceptional leadership insights.

    “A true leader adds value with every interaction, empowers others to deliver a result and inspires all to make a difference.”

    When I think back on all of the leaders that have inspired me over the years (professionally or personally) I cannot recall a time when they have actively sought to be either respected or liked – the conversation was always focused on solving the problems of others and listening to customers.

    These “Blue Unicorns” (thanks again Ted) were universally loved and respected – because of the above. They lived by values, led by example and always kept an open dialogue (regardless of seniority, title or background).

    I have heard many “managers” discussing this topic – as they seek “what’s in it for me” they inherently lose the adoration and respect of others. But the days of command and control are quickly dying.

    As a student of leadership, I truly appreciate your insights – this valuable resource is currently being printed (yes on paper!) to go up on my wall for daily reference.

    Thank you for leaving me inspired.

    Warmest regards
    Anthony Saffer

    • Kate Nasser says:

      Hi Anthony,

      Many thanks for sharing your perspective and story! I would add “Be likeable without seeking to be liked.”

      Honored that you found this post worthy of your time and of your wall for daily reference.

      Warmest thanks,

  10. Josephine. Oguta says:

    A well written list that would challenge any leader. I also believe a respected well-liked leader can only be identified by the quality of talent they attract and nurture. The best judge of any leader should be the quality of successor(s) they leave behind.
    Otherwise, one could be ‘taking a walk’ – with no followers believing they are leading 🙂

    • Kate Nasser says:

      Hi Josephine,
      I very much like your view that great leaders mentor to create great successors. SO very true.

      Many thanks for adding your voice to this discussion!

  11. Scott Mabry says:

    Outstanding post, Kate. It feels like #1 lays the groundwork for the remaining points, but all are very relevant. I’ve always thought about leadership along these lines and this post really captures the concept in very applicable terms. I will be sharing this list with my team and saving it for future reference. Thank you!

    • Kate Nasser says:

      Many thanks Scott! This blog post came to me out of the blue and once I started writing it flowed and flowed. I am so grateful for your feedback and thrilled that you find it valuable to share with your team.

      Warmest regards,

  12. Dear Kate,
    Many thanks for posting this comprehensive and succinct list. There are many points highlighted here that I have not seen on other leadership lists. I Think this is a must read for workforce strategists looking to develop leadership competency evaluations.


    Paul [believernomics]

    • Kate Nasser says:

      Many thanks Paul. I am honored and uplifted by your comments and thrilled that you found this post valuable of your time and comment.

      Grateful regards,

  13. […] Posts: 18 Things Respected Well-Liked Leaders Consistently Do Collaboration: Seek Opportunities, Cut […]

  14. Great list Kate, well done!

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