Management and Leadership

Resources - Management Systems and Leadership

More Safety Leadership Traits


Leaders must have credibility

  • Understand and appropriately apply procedures, requirements, regulations and policies related to areas of expertise.

Leaders must possess external awareness

  • Able to identify and remain up-to-date on key national and internal policies and economic and political and social trends that are critical to the "teachings" of the organization.

Leaders are politically savvy

  • Ability to identify the internal and external politics that impact the USGS and formulate appropriate approaches to each problem situation.

Communication Skills:

Leaders must possess effective interpersonal skills.

  • Consider and respond to the needs, feelings and capabilities of different people in different situations.
  • Effectively communicate to all levels: managers, peers, and employees.
  • Exercise effective listening skills, clarifying information as needed and facilitate an open exchange of ideas.
  • Have the ability to effectively communicate both verbally and in writing-make clear, factual and organized verbal and written presentations to a variety of audiences.


Leaders must have the ability to consistently develop and sustain cooperative working relationships.
  • Encourage and facilitate cooperation within their team environments and throughout the organization.
  • Be able to build networks and alliances, engage in cross-functional activities and collaborate across boundaries; honor commitments, gain cooperation from others to obtain information and accomplish goals.
  • Able to manage conflicts effectively.
  • Respectfully confront issues and disagreements in a positive and constructive manner to minimize negative impact.

Personal Development:

Leaders must value continual learning.

  • Have the ability to grasp the essence of new information, master new technical and business knowledge, recognize own strengths and weaknesses and pursue self-development.

Leaders must instill mutual trust and confidence.

  • Create a culture that fosters high standards of ethics.
  • Hold himself/herself accountable and reliable to ensure that projects within areas of responsibility are completed in a timely manner.
  • Be open to feedback from others and use this feedback to make corrective changes as appropriate.
  • Must be flexible and open to change.
  • Have the ability to adapt behaviors and work methods in response to new information, changing conditions or unexpected obstacles.

Leaders must be resilient.

  • Deal effectively with pressure, maintaining focus and intensity, and remain optimistic and persistent even under adversity.

Problem Solving/Critical Thinking:

Leaders must have the ability to identify and analyze problems.

  • Distinguish between relevant and irrelevant information to make logical decisions.
  • Able to exercise good judgment by making timely and effective, well-informed decisions.
  • Anticipate the impact and implications of their decisions.
  • Apply creative solutions based on new insights to make organizational improvements.
  • Able to deeply question and investigate the reasoning and logic of ideas and approaches.

Leaders must encourage thought-provoking curiosity, creativity, and analysis.

Strategic Thinking and Direction Setting:

Leaders must demonstrate the ability to take a long-term view and act as a catalyst for innovative organization changes.

  • Build a shared vision with others.
  • Influence others to translate vision into action.
  • Determine objectives and set priorities.
  • Anticipate issues and opportunities.

Customer Service:

Leaders must have the ability to create and sustain a team culture that encourages others to provide the quality of service essential to high performance.

  • Enable others to acquire the tools and support they need to perform well.
  • Influence others toward a spirit of service and meaningful contributions to accomplish mission.
  • Balance interests of a variety of clients.
  • Anticipate and meet the needs of clients.
  • Achieve quality end-products and be committed to continuous improvement of services.

Business Management:

Leaders must acquire and administer human, financial, material, and information resources in a manner that instills public trust and accomplishes the USGS mission, and use new technology to enhance decision making.
  • Assure that effective controls are developed and maintained to ensure the integrity of their charge.
  • By applying merit principles, hold self and others accountable for rules and responsibilities.
  • Ensure that projects are completed in a timely manner and within budget.
  • Monitor and evaluate plans, focus on results and measurements.
  • Manage financial resources and budgetary processes with efficient and cost-effective approaches.
  • Ensure that team members are appropriately selected, developed, utilized, rewarded and recognized as well as take corrective action appropriately.
  • Value cultural diversity and other individual differences in the workforce.
  • Ensure people are treated fairly and equitably.


Certisafety Section Home Page

Copyright ©2000-2019 Geigle Safety Group, Inc. All rights reserved. Federal copyright prohibits unauthorized reproduction by any means without permission. Disclaimer: This material is for training purposes only to inform the reader of occupational safety and health best practices and general compliance requirement and is not a substitute for provisions of the OSH Act of 1970 or any governmental regulatory agency. CertiSafety is a division of Geigle Safety Group, Inc., and is not connected or affiliated with the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), or the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).