Madam Sir –A guide to women's leadership styles
Women in this leadership style tend to put their employees, or team members need first. It requires the employees to provide constant feedback and for the leader to continually listen to this feedback to make decisions. Hillary Clinton is known to use this leadership style
Women are trailblazing both in professional and personal aspects of life. They are stepping to more opportunities to showcase their leadership skills. Women in professional settings are using their power and platform to scale global business. What all these successful women have in common are their leadership skills.
There has been a shift from traditional "command and control" to a more transformational style. Joanna Barsh, Geoffrey Lewis, and Susie Cranston in their book How Remarkable Women Lead: The Breakthrough Model for Work and Life, have deftly identified some common characteristics, values, and patterns that they have noticed in successful female leaders.
They found these successful women:
• They had a deep emotional connection to their work showcasing fearlessness in their approach to work and to do so, they regulated their emotions into fuelling their need for achievement.
• They are engaged with their work community completely to develop long lasting relations and to generate opportunities.
• These women managed their energy rather than focusing on maintaining work/life balance. It allows them to identify what drains them and what recharges them and used it to their benefit to maintain high energy levels.
These characteristics have allowed them to adopt a more fluid leadership style, a unique blend of their personality and work environment.
Some common leadership styles associated with women are:
Task oriented leadership style
It emphasizes task achievement through successful planning, defining goals, prioritizing the outcomes, and sticking to schedules. It allows women to be more democratic in their approach towards employee management and problem-solving, unlike the traditional autocratic system that men use. Nancy Pelosi exhibits this style of leadership.
Directive leadership style
Women who approach issues directly achieve the set goals, and stick to the schedule, this, unfortunately, exhibits them negatively. Their autocratic approach is the direct response to insubordination and sexism at the workplace: Angela Merkel and Margaret Thatcher exhibit such characteristics.
Transformational leadership style
This is the most commonly used leadership style which is widely accepted. It provides motivation and boosts the team members' morale by providing support and inspiration to meet the leader's expectations. This style allows women to take risks in achieving their goals. Michelle Obama, Oprah Winfrey, Indira Nooyi are women who successfully used this style of leadership.
Servant leadership style
Women in this leadership style tend to put their employees, or team members need first. It requires the employees to provide constant feedback and for the leader to continually listen to this feedback to make decisions. Hillary Clinton is known to use this leadership style.
Can women leaders make the world a better place?
It is a long road for women to rise to leadership positions and break through the "glass ceiling effect" before they hold strong thought in government, business corporations and other areas. But one thing is sure that we women will surely bring new ideas to the table and challenge the autocratic leadership that has been prevalent for so long.