Canadian Rental Service

At your service: A time for leadership

By Russ Dantu   

Features Business Intelligence leadership management service

We are living in precarious times right now. A country divided by what has happened due to COVID and the way our provincial and federal governments have handled things. Truckers blocking ports to the U.S., closing downtown Ottawa to voice their concern and try to get their point across. Rallies in front of parliament buildings in each and every province. I won’t pick a side here, as I’d alienate at least half of you…and I like having friends! What I will say though is that what we are seeing on the news every night is sometimes similar to what can happen at work when tough and possibly unpopular decisions have to be made. When this happens it’s our time as leaders to shine or fail miserably. Below are my 10 attributes of a great leader.

  1. Leads by example. When things get tough, a great leader doesn’t hide. She gets in the trenches alongside her employees to get things done!
  2. Has an open door policy. Make sure your employees can come and talk to you about work or personal issues when needed. If you do not like playing Dr. Phil, you can simply connect them with the right people to help them with personal issues.
  3. Is courageous. Good leaders make tough decisions when needed. It is not always the popular choice to make a tough decision, but, folks, it is not a popularity contest. You are a leader for a reason. 
  4. Is honest. Trust and integrity are the cornerstones of any good leader. Always do the right thing. Always be honest. There will be times when you are sworn to secrecy so you have to be creative with answering questions without compromising your integrity. If you ever break that trust, it will be hard to win your employees back.
  5. Is fair. Treat each of your employees fairly. Being fair means having the same standards for everyone. It means equal pay for equal work; no favoritism for your friends; and eliminating sexist or racist double standards.
  6. Is caring. It is important to be supportive, understanding and caring when you are a leader. This does not mean being weak. It means showing compassion towards other human beings. Learning more about your employee’s personal lives will deepen your relationship with them. Some will argue that they are there to work for you and you should not get involved outside of work. This is old-school mentality. Definitely get to know your employees better.
  7. Is competent. How many times have you spoken with the person in charge and wondered, “How the heck did they get to be the boss?” If you are promoting from within,  make sure they are the right person for the job. Train them adequately to equip them for all facets of their job.
  8. Knows how to delegate. This is so important. If you think you need to have your fingers in everything for it to be done properly, you will either burn out or start making mistakes and alienate your staff. Trust and empower your employees to get the work done.
  9. Is forward thinking. Daily decisions are made thinking about the future and where you wish to be down the road. Staying focused on your vision and goals is key.
  10. Is inspiring. The ability to rally your team during busy times or when morale is low will help keep a positive atmosphere. When we inspire, we draw out the best in people. It is contagious!

I have many more attributes of being a great leader that I will share in the next newsletter. When we lead effectively, we create a more effective team which leads to a better workplace culture and happier customers. It all starts from the top. Are you a good leader?

Take care of yourselves, your employees and your customers! 

Russ Dantu is a 30-year veteran of the rental industry and has been delivering workshops, seminars and keynotes on customer service for over 15 years. Visit


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