Yes, I also like the idea that leaders (governors, captains, admirals, scientists, engineers, miners, monks, etc) and characters (entertainers, movie stars, atheletes, e-gamers, etc) are rare and one must spend time and resources to get one. Empire-wise sport leagues such as space racing, anyone!
I also like leaders and characters to have single specific trait which can affect (good and bad) the development of the assigned worlds or fleets. For instance, a governor with social traits will not be good at colonies in the conflict zone; one would want a governor with military traits there. Or a fleet admiral will make a very bad governor on a planet with high volume of trade. She or he can become discourage over time when assigned to a bad fit duty and decreases in skill and disappears altogether if left in the same position after some time.
I also like leaders and characters to be able to "take their talents" elsewhere if they don't like the situation in their native empire. Defection and hiring.