Whether you are a rigorously dressed Chancellor leading Germany or you’re the leader of your own house, family and social group, your desires are majorly the same: a life with dignity, genuine success and healthy human development. Prepare your critical sense to test those goals. Let the debate begin!
Have you, (from Gen XX to Gen Y) ever felt this way?
1) Minor mistake: being afraid of the way you look. In the era of the body language myth, women aspiring for top leadership position tend to have little confidence, just like any other ordinary human being, about their posture, attitude and appearance. Angela Merkel has been repeatedly criticized by her look and nevertheless she still is the only female leader in European Politics. Looks can intimidate but it shouldn’t be the first thing you should think of when entering a room.
2) Acceptable mistake: Looking at how many women there are in the room. What did Hillary Clinton think when she started her career as a politician in the shadow of her own husband?
Where fighting for gender equality in top leadership positions is a must for any women of this generation, it is important to use this deterrent with much care because it can be a double-edged sword. You will most probably be the only woman in the meeting room of your company or in your tutorial at the university. Do not let pressure ruin your performance. Instead, be a role model for other women to take inspiration from. Everyone is meant to be right where they are.
3) Survival mistake: struggling for a flawless timeline to balance work and family. It is a fair issue to too many women, which is often overrated. There is no timeline for life events, although Facebook wants us to believe real life happens this way. The middle class individual almost in every culture in the world seeks for a balance between a successful career and a healthy family life. Planning in your mind at what time you’re finishing your first internship and at what time you’re going to win the Grammy’s doesn’t really do much more than make you a frustrated woman.
Life projects on you it’s will. Expecting things as you plan might potentially ruin your self-confidence and your career in the long term. Life is about compromises. Leaders tend to make flawless the funny convergence of happenings in life.
4) Unacceptable mistake: make your own opinion homologated with the trend of your business or the opinion of your CEO. Fearless women are those who take a stand in their houses, community, social revolutions, corporation or company. Although adopting the line of your workplace is an ‘easy’ and ‘comfortable’ choice (which is sometimes necessary), it puts you at risk of becoming into a person majorly lacking intellectual honesty, just like the majority of the people. Your life, your workplace and your community can only benefit from critical dialogues and critical exchange of opinions as it furthers human development in a smart way.
5) Lethal mistake: thinking that a man would do better than you in what you’re doing. Many women, once having reached the top, which is unanimously acknowledged as manly for the most part, start believing that a man in the same position would do a better job. This is a lethal mindset.
Gender equality has never been a reality, yet things are drastically changing. The fact that Planet Earth is in big part a misogynist world does not make the whole world a place for men only. If you’re a leader in whatever contest you’re performing in, that means you were meant to be there. You might have had no competition whatsoever with several male candidates, nevertheless, be proud of the role you took over.
Leadership does not only concern the way you lead your corporation or your company.
Leadership concerns the way you lead your life. If you lead your life in a good way, you’ve got high chances to lead other people, sharing best practices and inspire many others to come. It is what Leymah Gbowee, one of the XX peace star from Liberia, Nobel Prize Laureate, tells in her recent TEDx talk. Leadership is about self-empowerment. Leadership is not a state of mind.
Be the leader of your life, perpetuate the ethic of self-empowerment.