Sunday, March 1, 2015

Women as Leaders: What is different about leading other women?*

When I finally got around to reading the edition of the Glass Hammer where this article was, I was glad I did and just had to share a portion of it because the tips resonated with me.
As you read these tips, 3 things I encourage every woman (manager or not), to remember is that:
1.      You are a woman and will only be effective if you remain one in all your dealings – whether you’re leading women or men.
2.      Another thing that has worked for me when I manage people is “tough love” – women are great at this too.
3.      These 3 tips are already wired into you. We're good at delivering results through others. Just think back to how your mother got you (and your siblings) to do house chores or even how you're doing that successfully in your home now. So just function as designed…be authentic.
So here’s an excerpt from the article
Three Tips for Leading Women*
Here are some actions you can take to address your staff’s expectations:
1. Be friendly and relational with female staff members. Show an interest in the personal lives of your staff by asking about their weekends and vacations and inquiring about sick spouses or children. But be sensitive to cultural differences. In some cultures, it is not appropriate to share personal information outside of the family. The only way to be sure you are being sensitive is to ask people what is comfortable for them.
2. Share some personal information about yourself, within limits. For example, share stories about your weekends, family, and hobbies.
3. Listen to complaints and problems—but put a limit or boundary on how much time you are willing to do so. Let people know that you want to know when something is wrong in their personal or work lives and that you will help find solutions if you can. You need to know if something is distracting them from their work or they are facing other barriers to their productivity, and they need to feel that you care about them as human beings.
We can adjust our leadership styles to meet the different needs of women and men who work for us. Differences in our socialization mean that, as women, being relational at work is probably easier for us than for our male colleagues. Our challenge is to use the leadership style that works best for those we are leading.
When we take our "leadership" seriously, we can become healers because our care and compassion would help people at home and at work. When all is well with people at home, they show up at their best at work and everyone wins. Lead and empower others as the woman you are… When you do your best as who you are, one thing is sure amazing results and rewards will follow.

Can you?

That is a question that comes up now and leaders we need to help those around us give the right answer.