Understand what Strategic Leadership is and what are the essential characteristics of a strategic leader

Digital transformation, new paradigms in the market, changes in the relationship between employee and company… This entire scenario has been demanding a real revolution in the leadership profile that we knew until then.

In this sense, developing strategic leadership is a way to achieve good results and maintain relevance within the company.

But, after all, what is strategic leadership and how do we improve it?

In this article, we will understand more about the subject, in addition to knowing the essential characteristics of the strategic leader. Check it out!

What is strategic leadership?

In general, strategic leadership is nothing more than a way to adapt the role of the leader to the new needs of organizations.

Unlike traditional models, strategic leadership does not restrict its look only to direct financial results. Instead, it adapts its performance to integrate the company’s strategy with the organizational culture, making this impact on employee development and, consequently, on the customer experience.

In summary, this means that the strategic leader focuses his efforts on improving his team and offering them inputs for autonomy and decision making, becoming a point of support for his subordinates, rather than being solely responsible for all decisions in the area.

What are the essential characteristics of strategic leadership in companies?

Now that you know what strategic leadership means, how about understanding the characteristics to be developed to put it into practice in the company? Check out the main ones!

Priority setting

Despite offering autonomy to their team, it is part of the role of strategic leadership to define priorities and pass on the sense of urgency to the team, leading them to act in synergy on the most relevant topics of the moment.


The experience in dealing with complex situations is certainly something that makes the role of the leader so relevant, regardless of the leadership style used by each professional.

And it is precisely this experience that contributes directly to another characteristic of strategic leadership: predictability.

The strategic leader is the one who applies the knowledge acquired throughout his career to predict risk situations and act in a predictive way. For this, you can use tools that help you keep the history of previous actions, in addition to always being aware of possible pattern repetitions within everyday situations.

Critical Thinking

Maintaining the habit of questioning common sense and proposing alternative paths is also a characteristic of inspiring leadership, which should have critical thinking as the basis for the beginning of decision making.

Decision based on facts

Given the leader’s exposure to his team and peers, it is expected that his decisions will be questioned. Therefore, strategic leadership must practice fact-based decision making, so that everyone around it understands the strategic rationale behind it, justifying why it makes sense and what its medium- and long-term impacts are.

Constant learning

Finally, the strategic leader is the one who places himself as an eternal apprentice, so that he uses everyday experiences to acquire new knowledge and develop the skills of his team in an individualized way.

In this respect, the Life Long Learning mindset is essential to enhance strategic leadership in itself.

Want to become a strategic leader?

As we have seen so far, strategic leadership is certainly a path to the future of leaders and therefore needs to be constantly improved.

If you are interested in going deeper into Strategic Leadership, then you will love participating in the Masterclass Strategic Organization Leadership, with relevant reflections and tips to apply and become a strategic leader. The class is taught by Prof. Issam Ghazzawi from the University of La Verne, California. Enroll now now and participate in the course free of charge.

And for you who want to have an international experience, we have three courses on leadership in universities in the United States and Europe. They are:

Learn more about each of them and learn about our scholarship selection process.