3 Traits A Student Leader Develops

What does it take to be a student leader? What is it about them that makes them stand out?

While each leader may have their unique leadership style, you may notice that there are some common admirable traits that they exhibit.

9 Sep 2019

5 mins read


By Diyanah Syafiqah

What does it take to be a student leader? What is it about them that makes them stand out?

While each leader may have their unique leadership style, you may notice that there are some common admirable traits that they exhibit.

We sat down with Nguyen Manh Hung, SIM Student Ambassador and Director of External Relations, SIM Vietnamese Community (SIM VNC) to find out more. Once a shy boy, Hung, found himself growing through his leadership roles and responsibilities.

Reflecting on his own journey, Hung shares some of the traits that are key to helping a student leader flourish.


Being a SIM Student Ambassador grew my confidence in public speaking through opportunities such as bringing visitors around for a Campus Tour.

#Confidence
When faced with an issue, there are a multitude of ways to get around it. Sometimes, your decisions or methods may not bode well with everyone for various reasons. As a student leader, you are tasked with the responsibility to take the best course of action for the team. You'll have to believe in your decisions once they are made. When you do, it will only be a matter of time before you accomplish the objectives that are best for the team. As the outcome unfolds, your fellow teammates will be able to trust in the decisions that you take as well.


The Q&A segment is one of the highlights of V-Charming Pageant; my first event with SIM VNC.

#Wisdom & Foresight
I believe wisdom is something that one gains from a wealth of experiences acquired through your travels or even past events that you have participated in. With these experiences, you'll be able to see issues from another perspective that others may have missed. You'll also have the foresight to anticipate any issues and make better strategic decisions which are beneficial for the club.

When the ticket sales for V-Charming, a pageant for the Vietnamese student community across various institutions in Singapore, was not moving as fast as we had hoped, Hank, who helmed the production team and past EXCO member of SIM VNC, pulled the team together for a pep talk. I personally look up to him because he seemed to always know what to do. In this instance, he knew the team needed motivation. He mentioned that we could still pull off the event despite the low ticket sales but we would all walk away more gratified if the theatre was brimming with guests. He reiterated that this is only possible if everyone played their part in inviting guests. Needless to say, ticket sales rocketed afterwards and the theatre was packed on the event day!

The team which made V-Charming a success!

#Effective Management
Another hallmark of a good leader is the ability to recognise the strengths of their fellow peers as they may not be aware of their own capabilities or strengths sometimes. By doing so, it allows you to delegate tasks to the right people for efficacy. This also allows them to grow their skillsets alongside you. A great team grows and moves forward together.

When I had a hard time deciding on an area of expertise within SIM VNC, Hank advised me to try for the Director of External Relations position based on his observations of my strengths during V-Charming. Today, I am thankful for his advice which opened a myriad of growth opportunities for me.

It's important to know that these traits are not just exclusive to student leaders! You too, can start cultivating these leadership characteristics as they're useful to apply in different situations, especially when you step out into the working world.

Watch the SIM Originals: Getting A Headstart In Finding A Job video for more career building tips!