Leadership , in general, requires certain personality traits and behavior. A spiritual leader obviously has the added responsibility of providing for the soul although his or her skills will be the same as for any leader. It is the emphasis that may change according to the leader's accountabilities and obligations.
This is a good question to pose in juxtaposition to the time in 2013 that the Catholic Church sends its 115 cardinals into closed quarters where they must decide who will be the next Pope after Pope Benedict XVI. In this instance, establishing a spiritual leader is quite a democratic, structured process with serious implications and much media interest. The Pope is an extremely powerful person with great appeal at the head of an expansive organization.
Even chosen leaders can be unduly influenced so a good leader must believe in his convictions because when such a leader has the spiritual well-being of many people to consider, he or she must be able to inspire others and earn their respect to ensure that they do not question his decisions once made and will, if necessary,
follow on a path that is arduous, challenging, and uncertain.
Even if the search for a spiritual leader is a personal endeavour, the search will involve the same considerations. The person searching will no doubt either pray or meditate or connect with his inner feelings and find a person or group that best suits his or her beliefs, motivations and desires for the future.
A good spiritual leader will inspire confidence and create a feeling of well-being amongst followers.