Employer Branding

6 Leadership Qualities You Can Learn from Superheroes

Whether it’s a child or an adult, super heroes have always enticed us with their resonating stories of power intrigue, and justice. There is much to learn from just watching (or for that matter, reading about) superheroes, especially when we focus on their psychological attributes. These icons of greatness can mentor our thoughts and actions in the workspace and make us true leaders. Like trophies on a pedestal, organizations are also looking for heroes on their org charts; leaders who will spearhead the company into super-ness.

So, if you break it down, organizations, simply wants HEROES on their team:


H – Hardworking:

When it comes to the trait of being hardworking Wonder Woman tops the chart. She was blessed by the Gods to become as beautiful as Aphrodite, wise as Athena, as strong as Hercules and as swift as Hermes. However, she chose to surrender her powers to stay on earth and save mankind. As Diana Prince, she worked hard to master the martial arts and the use of her many weapons. Her calling was to be the protector of mankind and she chose to use her fighting skills to overcome evil, thereby spiraling her to ‘Super hero’ status. It is this super willed hardworking Wonder Woman who teaches us that fruits can be borne only if the land is tilled.

What can we learn from this?

Hard work pays. With dedication and a pure sense of conscientiousness, Wonder Woman did what she was chosen to do. A good leader leads by example and a lackadaisical leader will have similar followers. A leader who works hard to meet deadlines motivates team members to deliver on time. 

E – Energetic:

Need we say more about Jay Garrick’s energy, of having been knocked out for weeks, flies by like a hurricane to meet the girl he has been pining for years? Jay Garrick’s passion for Chemistry led him to inhale fumes which gave him the ability to run at an insane pace and thus Flash a.k.a the Crimson Comet was born. When Jay Garrick learned of the powers he had gained, he put them to good use by fighting crime. He channelized his energy to what he was most passionate about.

What can we learn from this?

What we can learn from Flash is that he pursued his passion with great zest and put to good use his newly acquired skill. His energy is unsurmountable when it comes to his super heroic feats. It is this zest which will help an individual accomplish his tasks to a heightened degree. Enthusiasm speaks volumes. Having a passion for the task is half-the-job done. If tasks are approached with the energy of Flash, then carrying it through fruition is the easiest. In a recent poll, the ability to energize people was one of the most effective traits of a good leader.

R – Responsible:

If you are looking to rise up the ladder of success, then latching onto the rung of responsibility is inevitable. Spiderman in his first taste of power blithely ignores the chance to stop a fleeing thief and his indifference catches up with him when the same criminal later robs and kills his Uncle Ben. Spiderman tracks and subdues the killer, only to learn that he could have undone what was done on that fateful day. Peter Parker understands that, ‘With great power there must also come great responsibility’ and in order to be Spiderman he has to take on the responsibility that comes with being a superhero and not just bask in the greatness of the new power gained. In time Spiderman makes important choices where he understands where his responsibility lies and acts in accordance with the role he has taken on. It is this acknowledgement of his responsibility that makes him a superhero.

What can we learn from this?

Great leaders don’t let their gifts go to waste but, rather, see them as a calling to do something heroic. An individual who takes responsibility for his/her actions ups the desirability quotient. Acknowledging the responsibilities that one has to undertake is indicative of a person who is in-charge and in control. What it suggests is that the person has the ability to take important decisions, learn from previous mistakes and take charge of the situation, in other words it is the core of leadership. What’s more, according to a recent survey more than 80% of managers consider a sense of responsibility, the no. 1 productivity motivator for them.

O – Organized:

Professor ‘X’ systematic approach to promote the peaceful affirmation of mutant rights, to mediate the co-existence of mutants and humans, shows how adept he was in his organization skills. To achieve these aims, he founded Xavier’s Institute to teach mutants to explore and control their powers. His great prowess into the management of this institution for the greater good of mutants and humans is remarkable. It is for these traits that he is highly regarded and respected.

What can we learn from this?

Developing a systematic approach to work is the foundation of every great Leader. Being process-oriented and methodized goes a long way in building institutions of trust and credibility. Clutter deters creativity, while organization promotes ingenuity and is a true mark of a leader.

E – Erudite:

Knowledge is profound and Tony Stark is the living example of this. His ardent knowledge of technology can be only matched with his super wit. Ironman always steered ahead of opponents, all the time, by putting to good use his colossal wisdom in the technical sphere and creating the best gadgets for his arsenal.

What can we learn from this?

Knowledge is limitless and will always be your ally to supersede. An erudite leader is well-informed to take important decisions worthy to make or break a company. How then is a leader to stay ahead from him competitors if he is not enriched with the complete knowledge of his product, market and how to overcome any adversity? Keeping yourself up-to-date on the latest trends in technology will ensure your superiority in the market and is key to your survival. After all what is in vogue today is passé, tomorrow. To enumerate this point, more than 2400 students in American colleges were surveyed on the characteristics they perceived are important to being a great leader and it was found that 48% believed that a leader should have a graduate degree.

S – Self-starter:

Batman trained himself both physically and intellectually to fight crime. He is our classic self-starter, who swore revenge on criminals because of the injustice done to his parents and schooled himself to combat the slickest criminals and bring them to justice. Unlike most superheroes, he does not possess any super powers, instead he makes use of his intellect to fight crime. His indomitable will & physical prowess makes him the super hero he is, which is characteristic of any self-starter.

What can we learn from this?

Proactive leaders literally make hay while the sun shines. They are the pioneers for innovative thinking. Thinking and acting fast with conviction and confidence will only result in big wins. A successful entrepreneur learns the job on the go and doesn’t believe in handholding. According to a recent survey, over 70% of the respondents wanted to launch their own organization, thereby indicating the boom of the self-starter leaders in the emerging market.

After all as the Dark Knight said, ‘A hero can be anyone’ & an organization wants a hardworking, energetic, responsible, organized, erudite self-starter on their team.

Author: As Head of Marketing at Aditi Staffing, Rakesh Singh is responsible for organizational brand outlook. With over 10 years of experience in various sales and marketing roles including an entrepreneurship attempt in the Digital Display Advertising world, he brings a comprehensive approach to Aditi Staffing’s brand management in the global recruitment market.

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