Why women make great leaders

Continued from last week


IT is a fact that there had been landmark achievements by women leaders but this has in no way changed the false perceptions or perceived and unsubstantiated reasons people give to discourage women leadership. The biases; basically cultural and religious are deeply woven into the fabric of our society.

And while there are biases against women leaders; people expect them to misbehave, they expect them not to have control over their emotions, they believe they are not good managers, impulsive, power drunk, manipulative and bossy among other uncomplimentary attitude, but the fact remains that women make great leaders.

Exploits of many women across the world have shown that gender should never be a factor in whether or not a person can be an exemplary leader and manager. This is because leadership abilities should depend on individual strengths, knowledge, innate abilities, management skills and personality traits.  It is time to stop using general beliefs to discourage women leadership or scheme them out of management roles using unrealistic yardsticks that are not employed when it is the male counterpart that is being considered for leadership even when they lack requisite qualifications and skills.

According to findings by a 2015 study carried out by a talent management system Saba Software and conducted by the Harris Poll, in contrast to men who tend to be career-centric and want to maximise their financial return from work, women view work more holistically, as a component of their overall life plan. They are therefore more likely to approach their careers in a self-reflective way and value factors such as meaning, purpose, connection with co-workers and work-life integration.

The report indicates that women’s inclination toward a holistic, self-reflective approach could explain why women employees define leadership differently than some men do. Women said they view leaders as those who share their knowledge and connect with their colleagues to help the team and the business. When women bring this attitude into managerial roles, it may actually make them stronger, more-effective leaders.

And while women may not know how wired they are to succeed in leadership roles, their potential and abilities are undeniable. They make great leaders because they are able to balance professional and personal leadership skills and are easier to approach with a personal request or sensitive question. Also women leaders are naturally empathetic, take the time to listen instead of reacting right away and value relationships. This enables them to have a strong understanding of what drives and motivates people to respect and acknowledge different people for their performance.

Women leaders possess the ability to help team members develop their skills and strengths because of their natural nurturing instincts that propel them to more often than not help those around them succeed while exhibiting the immense capacity to serve and be served by others.

More importantly, women are naturally adept at multitasking, innovative problem solvers who are not daunted by challenges and unexpected obstacles. This ability to decisively and quickly respond to simultaneous and different tasks or problems without giving in to frustrations is a key skill in management and leadership.

Women rarely take no for an answer, they are go getters and have a way of getting what they want. This skill comes in handy in leadership. They are naturally adept at dealing with crisis and even without education; many mothers have developed the skill of crisis management and know how to deal with crisis situations with compassion and patience. These are attributes that are necessary for every leader. Emotional intelligence is something that women have in abundance; they have instincts and ability to recognise emotions in themselves and others, this helps them in taking friendly but effective decisions in the work place.

Women are Good leaders because they are open-minded, flexible and ready to follow other paths when the expected fails. They are experts in making tasks look easy and effortless through their pragmatism and resilience.  They do not get daunted by challenges because the society has taught them to fight for everything and be the underdog and they know how to translate big ideas into concrete action and results.

For women, balancing and juggling a lot of things at a time is normal so they find it easy to adapt to leadership roles and challenges. With these great virtues, why then do people think women do not deserve leadership roles?


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