Only 22 per cent of Singaporeans believe that their employers are effective, a study by Ketchum Leadership revealed recently.

Meanwhile, Singaporeans across all levels of employment want to be more involved in decision making processes with leaders of their company, the study also found.

Ketchum said that over 500 Singapore workers responded to the global survey involving more that 6,000 people from 12 countries.

According to the fourth-annual Ketchum Leadership Communication Monitor (KLCM), 34 per cent of respondents in Singapore believe leadership should come mainly from the organisation and all its employees, while 29 per cent of Singaporeans still believe that it should be provided mainly by the CEO.

The survey identified the top five traits Singaporeans believe an effective leader should possess: 59 per cent believe in leading by example, while 55 per cent said that bosses should admit to mistakes, provide a clear long-term vision and communicate in an open and transparent way.

A total of 61 per cent of Singaporeans also feel that it is important for leaders to be intelligent, while 48 per cent said bosses should be friendly, and 46 per cent preferred likeable employers.

Corporate leadership extends beyond the office too. The KLCM survey found that 48 per cent of local consumers have purchased less or stopped purchasing altogether because of negative behaviour by a company's leaders.

Also, although transparent communication is deemed critical to effective leadership, only 21 per cent of employees in Singapore find that their leaders fulfil this aspect.

With regards to gender diversity in leadership roles, 75 per cent of local respondents said that they see male leaders as more effective in combating challenges while female leaders "are seen as better at showing respect for different cultures at home and abroad." The survey also revealed that 31 per cent of Singaporeans feel it is important for female leaders to be attractive, as compared to 15 per cent who said the same for men.

Tyler Durham, partner, and president of Ketchum Change said: "Social media has turned us all into journalists - and today we evaluate and react to every brand and company interaction in a whole different way. That means employees and a highly agile culture are as important - and potentially even more important - than the CEO in building brand reputation."

He added: "People expect organisations and leaders to lead at the speed of now. If we continue to view leadership as the responsibility of only a few people in the organisation, companies will never be fit for the future."