Women Executives: Leadership Role Models (Part 4)

So, you have arrived at a position within your organisation that has some degree of autonomy and responsibility. In fact, you now lead a team of individuals, with unique talents.

Your boss has handed you a brief that requires your team to deliver on an important project on time and on budget. You know that it is the make or break opportunity and you really want to prove that you have what it takes.

This is your springboard to making it at the executive management level, your holy grail.

However, you also notice that you are going boldly to where no other woman has been, in fact your company is devoid of women executives. So, nada and zip in terms of finding a role model or a mentor in a skirt and killer heels. Bummer!

You are a modern woman (read resourceful, and confident), and you take it upon yourself to hire a career or executive coach to fast track your ambitions.

Any coach worth their salt will start with working out what makes you tick.

I am fond of quoting this line from Sun Tzu, “If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle”Art of War

In other words, if you want to achieve (and earn) more, you have to become more.

You cannot expect to operate on a higher level without first making the necessary changes in the way you think, behave and conduct yourself. If you are expecting circumstances to adapt to suit you (as you are now), you are going to be waiting a very long time to become successful.

Have you given some serious though about what it means to be a well respected and effective leader?

In your present role where you work for your immediate boss, ask yourself what is it that you admire about him/her. Conversely what do not like very much about the way they run their unit or department especially in their daily interaction with their team.

List what you consider as the traits of your ideal leader, a person that you’d happily become. What are the interpersonal skills that you would like that person to possess?

Remember, to be an effective leader means getting your team to carry out a piece of work to a standard and level above what they would normally deliver. More importantly, it is getting them to do this willingly without cajoling or the threat of unemployment!

Bottom line: It means being influential and having your people opt in to your vision and goals.

I shall leave you to ponder this for the time being.

Yours in health, wealth and happiness

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