What Characteristics Are Most Prized in a Leader?

What Characteristics Are Most Prized in a Leader?

Many studies have concluded that natural leaders are usually taller than average, they are also confident, creative, inspiring and excellent communicators. Other highly prized leadership qualities include a good sense of humor, a stoic and positive attitude and having a deep and reassuring voice. Honesty is also much valued, or at least the ability to lie convincingly if this quality is lacking.

Confidence, talent and the ability to communicate well are self explanatory for a leadership role, but more and more evidence seems to suggest a more prosaic explanation for why some people appear born to lead.

Numerous studies have suggested that no matter how far above their ape ancestors humans have risen, they still have a fickle streak that ensures they respond more positively to taller, more attractive people.

Perhaps unsurprisingly according to the bestselling author and journalist Malcolm Gladwell who researched the topic for his 2005 book "Blink" around 30 percent of Fortune 500 CEOs were more than 6 feet and 2 inches tall, despite the fact that only around 3 percent of the wider population reach such lofty heights.

How leaders sound appears almost as important as how they look. Academics at Duke University and University of California, San Diego found that CEOs with the deepest voices earned $187,000 more than average.

Other physical traits common in leaders appear to be good posture and excellent physical fitness, while overweight people and individuals with high-pitched voices are often judged negatively by their peers.