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Leaders are the moral center of the group or organization they lead. We most often hear about unethical leaders who don’t have a moral center or who prefer the low road.

 Thankfully, there are people serving as leaders who take the high road.

 How do you identify a high road leader?

 I have isolated nineteen traits that are common among leaders committed to the high road.

  1. They have a high moral code that is imbedded in their personal DNA. They take the high road because it is the right thing to do and not because someone tells them to.
  2. They set the bar high for others because people always rise to the level of expectations. The bar they set for themselves is intentionally high.
  3. They have a vision for something they want to accomplish, which benefits the greater good.
  4. They have the energy to turn their vision into reality.
  5. They have their own unique ‘charisma’ that naturally attracts people to their cause.
  6. They have their own high expectations to make a difference in this world. This is usually part of their vision.
  7. They express a sense of urgency to see the fruits of their hard work. They also realize that their hard work and efforts will impact the world long after they are gone.
  8. They find it difficult to accept “no” or “can’t” for an answer because they have great faith in their team’s abilities.
  9. They have the ability to see possibilities in every obstacle and can get frustrated with people who only see obstacles.
  10. They recognize that they cannot achieve their vision alone and accept that other people’s contributions are vital to reaching the final destination.
  11. They have an inner drive to succeed, which can lead to problems when they focus on the goal instead of the journey. So they have high ethical standards to guide them.
  12. They have an attitude of caring, compassion, and empathy.
  13. They are grateful for those around them and for what they receive.
  14. They are courageous in their ability to quickly assess the risks, weigh the odds, and take wise chances.
  15. They are always accountable for their own results and their team’s results.
  16. They ask for honest feedback from each person on their team.
  17. They rely on a trusted advisor who is willing to tell them the truth and use the information to improve and grow.
  18. They recognize their humanness, and knowing they are fallible, never cover up a mistake. When they make one, they apologize and work to make things right.
  19. They know when to lead and when to let others show what they are capable of.