From high-powered Forbes 500 companies to local businesses, as a society we tend to look for a leader amongst our group. Some are people who other naturally look up to, while in others may not realize they have the necessary qualities until a situation forces them to emerge as leaders. From our experience, when you see these five signs that someone has bad leadership skills then it’s best to initiate change. It may be a difficult transition but it will be best for everyone involved.

Narcissistic Ego

A good leader is a good follower. This old adage always rings true because it means the person in charge understands that although they may often be the voice of the team and the executive decision-maker, they are still most importantly a member of the larger team. Someone who showcases an ego that exists to further themselves and not those around them will fail as a leader because those they lead will abandon them.

No Communication

One of the most common complaints from those who leave a job or volunteer role is lack of communication within the organization. This stems from the top down as the one in charge sets the tone for how the organization operates. Someone who wants to micromanage without explanation or deems themselves the only one worthy of knowing what’s going on is exhibiting bad leadership skills. To have the trust of your team, there needs to be open lines of communication.


There should be consistency across decisions from the one in charge. Inconsistency will breed distrust. It will also create an environment full of people who don’t know what is expected of them. This, in turn, affects the delivery of the final product or service.

Assigns Blame but Not Praise

A good leader praises those around them for a job well done. This doesn’t mean fawning unearned praise, but it’s important to recognize a success. On the same token, a bad leader will constantly deflect blame and place it on others. Instead, as the one in charge, they should understand the buck stops with them.

No Vision

A good leader is not afraid to take a risk to make their vision a reality. On the flip side, a bad leader will choose to stay in the bubble of their own comfort zone and refuse to grow.

These are just five signs that someone has bad leadership skills. There are others, but if you notice these common ones in either yourself or those around you then take the initiative to address the problem.

Diamond Strategy Group is a leadership development and consulting company headed by CEO and founder, Major General Mike Diamond. We focus on improving the quality of leadership within organizations by utilizing the same methods Mike and his consultants have used in both military and civilian sectors.

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