Female Leadership: What it Means

In the not-so-distant past, the phrase Female Leadership was often used to refer to a woman leading a small group of other women to a common goal—and it was rarely a goal that appealed to the general population.

General leadership roles, as well as those that involved significant amounts of money, power and influence, were generally held by men.

Well, times are changing and the fast pace of business demands that we focus less on the gender of the leader and more on the abilities of the leader.

And since women have shown themselves to possess exemplary leadership skills, by nature, it only makes sense that women should stake their claims in the record books, alongside the most influential business leaders in history.

We have a giant hurdle to navigate, though, and it’s the idea that women in leadership roles have been placed there to satisfy some sort of quota…or in an organisation’s effort to seem “progressive.” That hurdle has been built with the idea that women’s natural tendencies, like sensitivity, inclusiveness and creativity, have no place in business leadership.

And yet, it seems that these are the things that businesses need the most.

Think about it:  People buy from people, right? Consumers are not making purchases from featureless corporations and inhuman logos. Instead, they want to be seen and heard. They want to know that their problems, their pains and their opinions matter to the growth and progression of the industries that serve them.

Then it would make perfect sense to lead with the qualities that provide all that, right?

I think markets are gradually beginning to realise this.

Let’s face it. Any business’s culture is influenced from the top down. If the boss is interested in how employees feel, then those employees will care about how their fellow workers feel…and as a result, everyone involved starts to care about how the customer feels. Knowledge about customer concerns then influences operations, language, priorities, customer loyalty, reputation and so much more.

When I think of Female Leadership, I don’t necessarily think of leadership by women, but rather, leadership with female qualities. All the skills we own can be brought to leadership positions of all types, for the improvement of everything from customer experiences to profit margins.

Here are just a few examples:

  • Empathy
  • Perseverance
  • Listening
  • Inclusiveness
  • Conversation
  • Conflict Resolution
  • Collaboration
  • Cooperation
  • Focus
  • Teamwork
  • Humility
  • Creativity

What does all this mean? I am optimistic about a result that looks something like this:

Female Leadership will no longer be something we have to separate from leadership in general. Instead, great Leadership can be something that will, at its core, contain all the qualities we’ve come to experience as effective…even if they are inherently female.

Believe it or not, you can show up as an authentic woman in business and succeed. In fact, you will be more successful if you express the inborn traits you’ve been taught to suppress. Learn all about it in an upcoming Fempreneur Live Event. Click here for upcoming dates and to register.