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Politics: leadership matters

The 2010 UK election was the closest in recent times - we endeavoured to discover how much the success or failure of the campaign rested on the shoulders of the leader of each party.

We surveyed over 2,000 practising managers and asked them to assess each of the three main UK party leaders across the five core dimensions of leadership, and asked them to do the same with three global leaders and three business figureheads.

From their responses we scored the subjects, awarding them a "leadership quotient" out of ten.

What we found

Leadership matters

The research clearly demonstrates that a political party's success is very much yoked to its leader's capabilities and the public perception of the leader as an individual.

Our political leaders have room to improve

The leaders of the UK's main political parties all scored significantly lower than the business leaders and, in all but one case, the international politicians on key leadership skills.

Voters get personal

Voters scored leaders distinctly better or worse according to their own political affiliations. So a committed Labour voter would rate Gordon Brown's leadership skills higher than the mean average. Interestingly voters who scored leaders most harshly tended to be those planning on changing their usual voting intention.

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