Assessing the effectiveness of a leader is often a difficult exercise for many organizations. This is usually because most assessment procedures are influenced by organizational politics, they are not standard based, and the items on which a leader is assessed are undefined or poorly defined.

This study presents the Essential Behavioral Leadership Qualities (EBLQ) approach for assessing leadership effectiveness as an alternative method to commonly used assessment procedures. Among other assumptions, the EBLQ method is built on the assumptions that a leader should be evaluated on clearly defined behavioral qualities and his/her effectiveness rating should be standard based. Hence, the EBLQ method measures the effectiveness of a leader against the essentiality levels of behaviors deemed necessary for effective leadership. Leadership effectiveness is determined for each leadership behavior and for overall leadership performance.

The EBLQ method was demonstrated in the assessment of the leadership effectiveness of the principals of schools for students who are blind or visually impaired.