Return to site

Adam Ferrari Describes the Hallmarks of Successful Business Leaders

Originally published on

Great business leaders come in all shapes and sizes. But, as entrepreneur Adam Ferrari explains, it can sometimes be challenging to define what traits lead to business success.

Some people believe a great business leader needs to be feared, while others think they need to be revered. But, in most cases, managers who want people to know they are “the boss” are often much less effective than those who are humble.

Here are some of the hallmarks of successful business leaders.


Leaders need to influence others to follow them to accomplish a common goal. This requires managers to get others to buy into what they say and do. All great business 

But, before they can motivate others, they need to make sure they have the proper drive and clear understanding of what it takes to succeed. Employees will replicate the behavior of the manager. If the manager isn’t outwardly displaying their motivation and passion for the job, it’s likely the employees won’t do that either.


Business leaders need to be true to themselves if they want to succeed. But unfortunately, people can quickly identify when someone else is being fake, and if that happens, they are unlikely to want to work hard for that person.

Employees today want to be inspired by authentic people. They don’t want to be misled or lied to. They value authenticity because it shows a personal side to a manager-employee relationship that can sometimes remain hidden.

It’ll be much easier to be authentic to others around you when you’re authentic to yourself. And in the end, that will result in you inspiring them to be authentic, too.


Successful business leaders can’t play favorites. But unfortunately, many business leaders set themselves up for failure in this regard by not having clear goals and objective ways to judge employee performance.

To avoid this pitfall, set clear performance processes and then assign specific management processes that match the performance goals.

It’s essential that managers put these processes in place and communicate them clearly to employees. That way, employees know what’s expected of them and how they will be measured, so there are no surprises. In addition, this approach removes the possibility for subjective management, which often results in one employee being favored over another.


Many things separate a leader from a follower, but passion is perhaps the most critical one.

Successful business leaders are passionate about what they do. They believe wholeheartedly that their job is much more than a job — that it has meaning and purpose that extends far beyond office walls and financial spreadsheets.

Leaders also know that they can’t survive on passion alone. They must corral that passion into useful energy that’s focused on day-to-day tasks and long-term vision.


Successful business leaders don’t stop learning when they graduate from school or get elevated to a management position. Instead, as Adam Ferrari explains, these people are constantly learning so they can stay up with a rapidly- and ever-changing world.

Those who want to be successful business leaders must always be learning something new. Therefore, they must research on their own, come up with theories and then test those theories as if they were lab scientists.

When business leaders consider themselves life-long learners, employees will likely follow suit. This, in turn, results in a company full of people who are constantly bettering themselves through advanced education.