Great leaders genuinely care for every person on the team. However, there are always some that we rave about, depend on the most, and can consistently expect more from. They are the internal leaders and the up and coming leaders of the organization who have only gained the status through hard work, success, and consistency. We no longer hope they will have a success because we have grown accustomed to consistently expecting it (while not taking it for granted), and at this point accountability has risen well above the detail level. These are the types that give us energy rather than consume it. They are the internal leaders that everyone counts on, and who will take the organization to the next level. They are raved about by us, and others both inside and outside the organization.
Internal leaders are also those that peers (across all areas of the organization) can rely on. No one truly gains leadership status just by being liked by the boss. And arguably, if the boss is a good leader they will not buy into someone being a good leader unless their peers do first. In priority order, internal leaders must be well respected, and liked by the vast majority of the team. Respect and likeability are not results of having one or two successes – they require consistency. It is not just about being good at what you do because it also requires help from other team members, and others only help if they believe the person works as hard or harder than they do, appreciates others, and has good ethics.
An additional responsibility of a leader is to rave about the right people, who are the people others naturally rely on.