Amongst the qualities that make for a great leader, persistence is right up near the top of the list.

The ability to keep going, to continue striving towards those goals you’ve set for your team and for the business, is a key leadership skill that’s inspiring to witness.

Every business, every project and every team faces challenges and obstacles. There’s always an element of risk involved because no path is ever smooth – curveballs are a part of life. Leaders who demonstrate persistence in the face of these challenges and obstacles though, are the ones who are more likely to achieve their goals, and inspire others to follow their lead.

Persistence allows a leader to stay focused on their goals. A leader who is persistent knows what they want to achieve, and is realistic about the effort required to make it happen. They actively plan for and expect challenges, so are not easily deterred by setbacks or distractions. This means they can quickly switch into problem-solving mode to maintain their focus on the big picture. This ability to stay focused on big goals is critical to progress, as it keeps the project moving forward, giving teams the momentum they need to keep working towards their objectives.

This single-minded focus on the end goal allows a leader to hone their problem-solving skills, to find solutions to complex problems by applying themselves and not giving up without exploring every angle. These are leaders who are willing to experiment, try new approaches, to collaborate and draw on the expertise and experience of those around them in seeking out a solution that works. This problem-solving ability is critical for leaders, as it enables them to navigate through difficult situations, but also to make the most of the skills available within their teams and to inspire their people to grow and improve.

Resilience and adaptability are the natural consequence of developing persistence, as persistent leaders have to learn to bounce back from setbacks and failures. They need to learn to change course quickly and decisively when needed, not dwelling on mistakes, but instead using them as learning opportunities. As their sense of resilience and adaptability grows as a result of their persistence, so too does their confidence in decision making, creating an ever more persistent and decisive leader who can be trusted to deliver despite obstacles and challenges.

This is the type of leader that is appreciated by both the business and its employees, because their persistence and ability to deliver on objectives creates a sense of credibility and trust. When a leader is persistent in pursuing their goals, is able to overcome obstacles, act decisively and continue to make progress despite challenges, it  creates a sense of security within the wider team – a feeling of ‘if the leader is confident in facing this challenge, then so are we.’ This sense of security enables those working under the leader to deliver their best work, to bring creativity and confidence into their work knowing that the leader is guiding them all to achieve their best.

Ultimately, persistent leaders are those who go on to be the most inspiring and motivating to work for. When a leader demonstrates persistence, it sends a powerful message to their people that anything is possible with hard work and dedication. This can be an incredible motivator for team members, who are more likely to collaborate and push themselves in the interest of team goals when they see their leader doing the same. A persistent leader can inspire others to overcome their own personal obstacles, and to develop the vital skills they need to achieve their full potential.

Persistent leaders are the ones to look out for. They’re the ones you want to work for, the ones you want to employ, and definitely the kind of leader that you want to be. 

If you’re looking for a leader who stays focused on their goals, who’s reliable, credible and trustworthy, who’s adaptable and resilient, possessing great problem-solving skills, and who’s inspiring and motivating to work with, I’d recommend you put persistence at the top of your list of leadership qualities.

And of course if you or your business need help developing persistence skills amongst your leaders, my team and I at Slate Digital would love the opportunity to help with that. Get in touch here.