Women Make Better Leaders Than Men
“In my experience, women make much better executives than men.”
Kip Tindell author of “UNCONTAINABLE” and CEO of The Container Store®.
4 areas women are better:
Kip in his own words (1:05):
7 more areas women are better:
- Taking initiative.
- Developing others.
- Building relationships.
“… women are rated higher in fully 12 of the 16 competencies that go into outstanding leadership. And two of the traits where women outscored men to the highest degree — taking initiative and driving for results — have long been thought of as particularly male strengths.” HBR
Hire for gender:
It’s illegal to discriminate based on gender. But, organizations that value collaboration, communication, and teamwork should – if the research is accurate and a pool of qualified candidates is available – be hiring more women.
Tindell believes leadership is communication. It makes sense that almost 70% of their workforce is female and 17 of their top 21 positions are filled by female leaders.
The homogenization of genders diminishes, degrades, and devalues both genders.
Diversity is illusion when everyone’s the same.
This post is about skill-sets that women possess in larger degree than men. Skills can be learned. In that sense, there’s hope for all of us.
Don’t disregard an idea because it feels awkward or has exceptions.
How are female leaders better than male leaders?
What feels dangerous about this conversation?
Pre-order Tindell’s book: UNCONTAINABLE (Highly Recommended)
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sounds too generic, one has to judge each leader by what they bring to the table.
Hi Bill. It is generic for sure. That’s what makes the conversation important. We can’t say women always make better leaders.
Context and values are central to the conversation.
The thing that feels awkward to me is suggesting men and women are different. But, I believer they are. Our brains work different, we look different, our internal chemistry is different. Now what are we going to do with this? Bury our heads in the sand?
Thanks for dropping in.
I always thought that the sameness of the goal matters more than any other point. If you have that focus, then any color race or creed can fit.
Different but equal…now where have I heard that before? Indeed the brain chemistry in men and women is vastly different and this, among other variables, fosters skills and weaknesses in individuals of each sex. My microcosmic experience does not make me an effective judge of who’s a better leader among the sexes. But, I would like to pose a topic seldom addressed…….where do transgender and/or transsexual people fall on the spectrum of good and not so good leaders?
I agree with Bill above. It seems that The Container Store, in their strive for diversity, has put together a leadership team that doesn’t seem very diverse (17 of their top 21 positions are filled by females). Kip notes that most of their revenue is brought in by women. If they were to have more of a male perspective then perhaps more men would find what they need or want at The Container Store. Again, I think we should hire the best candidate possible that meets the needs of our company at that time. It seems counterproductive to focus on one attribute, be it skin color, gender, college attended,or the like.
Thanks Scott. I am struck by Kip’s commitment to female leadership. Perhaps he’s not after diversity – even though I brought it up. Perhaps what he finds is that women are more suited to his organization based on their values and leadership style.
I’m with you. It’s about the best candidates not gender.
Glad you jumped in.
Diverse compared to what? As people, we socially construct the idea of diversity. I am struck that this conversation is still sensitive in the year 2014, and that 17 out of 21 female to executives might be considered out of the norm (and non-diverse, yet we don’t even know the demographic makeup of Kip’s team – e.g., race, ethnicity, religious background, age, sexual orientation, National origin). It is not unusual for most major organizations to have a vast majority of top White male executives, and sprinkling a few females into the mix seems to be a move toward the acceptance of a diverse workforce. But when the tables are are turned, it doesn’t seem very diverse?
I agree we’ve got to hire the best person suited for the job, but also believe sometimes we need to look beyond ourselves and our current circles and circumstances to find who we need. After all, if we socially constructed the idea of difference and diversity, we have the power to socially construct a new future where acceptance and celebration of our similarities and differences is the norm.
Women make or influence 80 – 85% of purchasing decisions, so I’m guessing the Container Store’s leadership team is in touch with who their customers are and what products they will buy.
Thanks Dan for taking a risk in sharing this blog. As Vicki notes below…the lack of comments is quite telling.
Thanks Bethany. Interesting idea that organizations would benefit if they reflect the demographic of their customers.
Generalizations are always dangerous. However, women are used to having to work harder and accomplish more to prove themselves in the work place. They have been groomed to work hard and sadly earn less. They are hungry to prove what they can do.
Women are experts at reading people and knowing when and how to encourage. Most (not all, of course) have a caring nature.
If you have a really big task to accomplish, ask a woman.
My comments probably won’t be popular, and as a woman myself, they will be deemed biased. However, these comments come from decades of experience of working with both genders.
Thanks Dauna. Your comment suffers from the same problem as this post.
However, (in general), research suggests that women have worked harder to get to the top are better suited to be there in the end.
If the notion that women are better leaders is based on the premise that they have to work harder than men to achieve leadership due to gender barriers, it’s worth asking whether the removal of those barriers would still produce the same result.
Your own personal anecdote/experience is just that: personal. I’ve worked with plenty of women who were overwhelmed by task management and organization, and such skills are not inherent to any gender.
What’s more, by assuming that women are naturally better at leadership and seeking to place women in those roles, we run the risk of simply replacing male privilege with female privilege, as we seem to be a species that assigns privilege to leadership (and there’s no evidence women would be any different in this regard.)
The “crickets” are chirping! Usually by the time I read this there are a ton of comments – but not today! I believe women have great abilities but often are overlooked for positions of leadership because the old views still harbored (albeit quietly) toward women (and yes, some women harbor those same views). We have all seen poor women leaders too, and in my experience, that tends to result in the rush to judgment that all women leaders must be poor – whereas a poor male leader is just that and does not lead to a judgment on all male leaders. I think that is apparent in our country where we are supposed to be so advanced in our beliefs and the freedoms we value, yet we have few women leaders that are elected at the national level. But getting away from a gender war, I believe everyone should be judged on their merits, and with all other skills, are improved with experience. So our efforts should be in promoting leadership opportunities within our organizations for all people so we can develop and observe the “talent pool” and let the cream rise to the top regardless of gender, race, etc.
Thanks Vicki. I posted a little late today. Perhaps the comments will pick up later.
You hope that positions are filled on merit but we all know that other factors enter the equation. It’s something to strive for. In the end, success is determined by the people around us.
Women have always had a hard time in business world! That’s the norm! That’s the danger! Accepting that only men are capable to be leaders. Regardless of gender, as long as they have the capability to be one, any gender could be a leader. It’s all in the mindset. It’s hard to rectify years of conditioned social behaviours!To keep on accepting it,would hinder progress and the progress of the future generations! Women are not only more educated but to top it all, they take challenges and success personal and are more caring !
Thanks Choong. Those who work hardest to climb the ladder grow strongest.
Just making a quick observation here as a retired teacher/librarian it’s what we all did in our classrooms with our kids that moms have been doing for years. Hmmm….
How else will you get 25 youngsters to begin to grow up, learn, socialize, function in the classroom and the world while teaching and being “mom” from 8-3.
Women in our society learn these traits to survive and help the rest of us do the same. Not that men can’t and some do but the majority falls typically to women. This probably won’t be popular either but think about all your teachers who got you your start for life…..
Thanks Nancy. I get the feel of the importance of nurturing. We know that both genders can nurture. I also still hold to the stereo typical idea that women, in general, are better at this. Frankly in a more relational style of leadership nurturers – male or female – should have advantages.
Danger – separating people on the basis of gender, race etc. and then assigning qualities to the entire population that has nothing to do with the reason the group was segregated (again gender, race, etc.). As an example, saying women understand the pain of childbirth better than men makes sense, because we segregated men and and women biologically and this difference has a biological reference.
That being said, women have had to develop skills different than men in order to move forward in a world where women were expected to act differently. We’ve all heard the,
‘men are aggressive while women are bitchy’ example, ad nauseam. These skills, many of which you listed above, are highly valued today, but not biological in nature :). So, although many women have developed these skills I believe that both men and women are equally able to develop them.
And then there’s the pay differential….
Thanks J. On a personal note, I find some qualities/skills easier to adopt and develop. I’m naturally aware of the emotional state of others. It’s something others can learn. But, I don’t have to think about it. Maybe I’m part woman. 😉
I’m glad you brought up biology. It’s one clear place where gender difference is obvious. Brain research suggests our brains function differently. Monthly cycles also indicate we are different.
I hope one day no one will comment on gender when discussing who makes the best managers. What will hopefully be more important will be the skills, experience and values.
Thanks Michelle. I think this conversation dies down as women are elevated to a rightful status in leadership circles.
Women connect people, places, ideas in ways that men typically do not. They can often see the bigger picture, translate between technical and non-technical people, reinforce an idea that isn’t being heard and find the common denominator that will bring people to a common goal. Men often get the executive positions because they are fantastic at focusing on a single goal and accomplishing that goal AND taking the credit for their accomplishments. Neither is better/worse. We should embrace what each gender brings to the workforce. And match the need with the skillset. Too often, we all hire the person who is exactly like us. I work in IT and women are scarce. I see them mostly in roles that are essential for communication and collaboration — project managers, business analyst, scrum master. I say, let’s learn from each other, celebrate the differences and put the right people in the right jobs.
Thanks dhawk. Great stuff and all “generally true.” :-).. Well, your last sentence is specifically true.
Ok so on the SURFACE I was thinking… ‘YEAH! GO WOMEN!’ (grins)
Yet underneath it all, while I agree that women CAN be better at some more of the soft skills, I’m not convinced any of that would make us BETTER leaders then men. In fact, I’ve seen my share of abusive female ‘leaders’ that rival the men in my lifetime.
I still lean towards ‘Let the best person for the job, (and the most qualified) regardless of gender.’
I also wouldn’t necessarily prefer to work for a woman just because she IS a woman. While I’m ALL for gender equality in terms of certain things, I also know that there are some women who are quick to get on the power trip (not sure if this is a by-product of women in general being WITHOUT this power or what??? ) and once again, it’s not about the JOB…it winds up being about manipulation and control. (power plays) That’s the downside for putting a driven but otherwise, ‘wrong’ woman in leadership. (Similar for power hungry men)
So I guess when it comes down to it… while part of me WANTS to agree with the statement that women make better leaders then men. I’m still not able to ‘buy’ it. Not saying men are BETTER leaders then women either.
We need the skills and qualities of both the masculine and feminine in leadership. The combined diversity of both.
Thanks Samantha. I feel the same pull of just forget the gender thing and focus on competence. But, I also believe the issue is still important today and worth bringing up from time to time. The fact that more female musicians are hired if the auditions are behind a curtain suggests we still need to talk about this.
Oh I understand we still need to talk about it. I just can’t help but find it humorous that we have to turn it into an ‘us’ or ‘them’ gig. Regardless of spiritual bent, religion, race, or creed.. we can’t have masculine without the feminine and vice versa. We’d go extinct without each other and that’s an existential FACT! haha
For me, it comes down to something very basic and simple. I’m against abusive and corrupt leadership. PERIOD. Regardless of gender. And I know for a fact that women are just as prone to being abusive and toxic as a man.
As for inherent differences, I can’t help but laugh again. I’ve get to meet man who has been able to get pregnant and give birth. haha! I also have no problem with the fact that men (most) are physically stronger then women. I loved my husbands strength and the qualities he had as a man. As long as I wasn’t being abused and that’s what it boils down to, I value gender differences.
Yet that said even within the same gender, we still find diversity. Some men are naturally more sensitive then others. Some are more ‘physical’. Some are more ‘musical’ and/or artistic. I’ve known quiet men who rarely share their feelings and I’ve encountered a few who were more then willing to ’emote’ even more then I do! : )
Same case for women. Now two snowflakes are alike.
Great discussion though Dan. It’s always interesting to see the various perspectives and what will turn up.
Everyone has their Niche male or female! Select the best fulfilling candidate and let the good times roll!
Thanks Tim. Let the good times roll.
Message here is embrace and utilize the differences, a future where men and women recognize the differences as all being useful rather than one better than the other…let’s face it that is what makes for a good marraige, not all being the same, or one thing better than the other, but recognize the different skills one posseses and use them as best you can. Same as you would do on any team.
Thanks Rich. I’m glad you brought up marriage. The richness is in the diversity. Organizations are richer because of diversity not sameness.
I agree with you that in many ways female leaders are better leaders. They have more emotional than men. And this provides them edge over men. They can better understand the feelings than men. They are also better in dealing with situational factors that need psychological element. They do have limitation as well. Where physical work is needed, they may not fit into the role. Where lot of travelling and stress are required, they may not emerge as competitive.
The great danger to this conversation is the our ability to accept the fact. Many people may not easily accept this reality. Many people with different mind set can actually question the concept. I think women can excel by understanding men’s psychology better. They can be and are better leaders because they have more human elements in their approach and behavior.
Thanks Dr. Gupta. Your inclusion of emotional intelligence is useful. As with all the ideas about men and women, it is a general statement.
One this is certain. Men and women aren’t the same and everyone loses when have to pretend they are. Sure, it opens a can of worms. But, as long as we treat people based on merit rather than gender we should be ok.
This post is a complete waste of time. Saying that one gender is better at doing anything than their counterparts is like saying the color blue is better than green. You can compare and contrast the differences and come to your own conclusion but in the end it is nothing more than your oppinion. If the learning from this post is in the discussion then so be it. I just hope that no one would read this and make a hiring decision based on gender (or any other) steriotypes.
Thanks B. Making hiring decisions based on gender is illegal and foolish. Decide on merit.
B, you are less than informed if you think one gender can’t do something better than the other, and to think so “is nothing more than your opinion.” Many scientists have long studied us and have proof. Please read Deborah Tannen’s “You Just Don’t Understand” and “Talking From 9 to 5.” She doesn’t take sides, but shows ways we can work together more effectively. I think what Dan was trying to get at with this post is far from a waste of time, asking for much deeper, considered thought on this subject. Clearly merit must rule in hiring decisions, but the fact is, it often doesn’t because of deep gender biases. I encourage you to read more and contemplate.
Mary, you reply has more to do with the discussion and less to do with the original post. If you’ve ever heard the phrase two wrongs don’t make a right then I am sure you’ll understand where I am coming from. We disagree on the means, not on the ends. I do agree that the conversation is useful, and do not agree that you have to use generalization to stimulate useful discussion. Dan could have very easily stated that men are better leaders and got similar discussion and I would have stated the same thing. My premise on saying that the post was a waste of time was that without the discussion the post itself is part of the problem and not part of the solution.
B, I can appreciate your reaction to Dan’s post. While uncomfortable, I do believe it was deliberately and perhaps even necessarily provocative, given the imbalance and under representation that still exists of women in leadership positions. Hiring decisions should clearly only be made based on merit- what Dan’s article underscored for me, is the importance of ensuring an environment in which the best talent can surface. Given the statistics, we clearly have some work to do as a society in this respect. Context/ culture makes all the difference,. If women don’t feel encouraged or even welcome to participate at all levels of an organization – they will be less inclined to submit their candidacy for positions they might indeed be the most qualified candidates. In these cases we risk limiting our talent pool, in subtle but potentially profound ways. We believe we are selecting the best talent, without realizing that our culture may have already screened out even better candidates from the ones that felt entitled to apply, I agree with you, it’s been an intersting discussion, and I am grateful to Dan for raising this important blindspot- sometimes people need a bit of a shake up to perceive a problem that they have become oblivious to. Dan’s post seems to have served as an effective, and important shake! It’s good to be thinking all together! Cheers, Lori
But what if women are better bloggers on leadership too? What will you do then Dan?
Thanks John. I’ll keep doing what I already do, my best. 🙂
Dan, this post really struck me and got me thinking.
Once we are generalizing it would probably be safe to say that girls/women are not as reinforced, recognized or valued for their leadership skills. In fact, in a male dominated environment the value of what a women might contribute is often not appreciated. The end result is that women are often less confidant, feel less qualified and are less assertive than their male counterparts- and all too often to the detriment of the organizations they serve.
As research is exposing the importance of the once neglected softer skills, for leadership, perhaps women’s perspectives will be increasingly welcomed and even solicited, rather than devalued, marginalized or silenced, by the intimidating, oft impatient reactions of those in positions of power – As is all too often the case.
Perhaps this self reinforcing power structure and dynamic will shift as emerging views and research on the importance for leadership effectiveness of what were once considered less significant softer skills becomes more widely understood. And when inviting women to the proverbial table to contribute at the highest levels, as full partners-is recognized not as a diversity tactic but a strategic advantage and necessity. Thanks for stimulating another important conversation! Best, Lori
Thanks Lori. The reason I brought up the topic today is Kip has invited women to the “table,” and he celebrates it. At least for the foreseeable future, because of inequities, this conversation is still useful.
My sentiments exactly. we as a society have to get a way from these fruitless exercise in comparison of genders. for both sides loose in these comparisons. The side that comes out on top becomes puffed up in pride and the holy book says pride goeth before a fall. And the side that comes out on the bottom suffers from low self-esteem which further hurts their performance.
Its strange how women say they want parity with males but when they come out ahead they stop talking about parity which indicates they really don’t want parity else they would talk about it as a problem to be solved weather they are on top or the bottom.
a good example of this is that back in the eighties when the nation’s boys excelled over the nation’s girls the women movement focused the nation’s attention on the gender gap. women said they wanted parity with males in education. They ailed with the paternal instinct of many men reformed the education system which was blamed for why girls lagged behind boys.
Now some 35 years latter the gender gap has been reversed Girls on top boys on the bottom.
where’s the women’s movement concern for parity now?their silence is evidence they never wanted parity for if they did they should now be focusing the nation’s attenuation on the present gender gap.But they aren’t
So do women really want parity with males in leadership as they claim? Should we men trust them now when it is obvious they were lying when they said they wanted parity in education. But in fairness parity is a very hard thing to obtain because whatever causes something behind to catch up is called momentum and momentum will carry that which is catching up ahead of what it was once behind. And if women over take males in leadership they will have the power to subjugate the male and the male won’t be able to catch up because the reason why females have overtaken males in education is because of the paternal instinct in men that caused them to come to the aid of their daughters. Unfortunately women don’t have this paternal instinct and won’t come to the aid of men as proven by the fact that women are not now coming to the aid of males in education. this is why Alpha Male is starting to wake up and organize the brotherhood to resist the sisterhood in their desire to subjugate the brotherhood.
Be aware Blogs like this are being read by males. Alpha male has his spies. A bit of advice.
To reassure Alpha male that you really do want parity then close the gender gap in education.
Sorry, Dan, I gain a great deal of insight from many of your posts, but this is one with which I take particular issue. I have worked for and with great leaders – men and women alike. I have also worked for and among those who are flawed in many ways alike, regardless of gender.
As the father of daughters, the one point I have stressed to them time and again is that western society needs to move away from stereotyping and the generalizations we make about each gender – and especially away from gender based hiring practice – instead picking the best “person” or the “right fit” for the job. Only then will we have achieved full equality in the workplace.
I really don’t care about one’s race, their gender, what physical handicap they might have, or their orientation; I only care about the skills they bring with them so that the team can succeed.
Thanks Naldo. I think we’re in the same camp. Our difference is I believe the conversation is still necessary. You might get it. Many don’t.
I agree but with a caveat, Some women are much better leaders than some men. As are some men are much better leaders than some women.
Thanks Valentiaobenito. 🙂
After watching the kick off o the #heforshe campaign speech by Emma Watson yesterday at the UN, this was a befitting post to bring this issue up. I love that you tackled this Dan I don’t think you are saying we are any better or worse then men really just that we have qualities that we can bring to the table as well that should be recognized. Compare profitability from a company that has women in its leadership vs not and the numbers will do the talking for you.
Thanks Amy. Wonderful observation. Yes, this post is about qualities or skills. One reason I referred to the HBR article is I felt it had the research on this topic.
Two thoughts (less related to the post and more related to the comments).
Wage Gap:There’s a great study in “Give & Take” which talks about how the wag gap emerges out of a greater willingness on the part of men to try and negotiate starting salaries. In the study, while men and women were offered the same starting package, men were much more likely to negotiate for higher starting pay. To help those who find it difficult to negotiate on their own behalf, the author suggests creating a mental group of “others” on whose behalf you are negotiating. This change of reference increased the likelihood givers (both women and men) would negotiate higher pay.
Blind Auditions: If the hiring process used some equivalent to blind auditions, we’d find and start to eliminate hidden bias. “Prof. Claudia Goldin (a Harvard Economist) and Princeton’s Cecilia Rouse recently completed a study of blind auditions in symphony orchestras in the USA. They found that the use of a screen increased the chances of US women in the first round of auditions by 50%, and in the final rounds by 300%. The overall effect of blind auditions has increased the presence of women in US orchestras over the last 20 years from about a 5% representation to 36%.”
Thanks Ed. I particularly enjoyed your second paragraph.
Perhaps part of this conversation should be about coming to the realization that we have biases and to pretend we don’t only propagates them.
It was already mentioned above in a response to a comment, but I want to reiterate the relevance of the book “You Just Don’t Understand” by Deborah Tannen. She’s a Dr. in linguistics and references lot of evidence than men and women are measurably impacted by the social groups they grow up in. In other words, because girls (usually, not always) grow up socializing with other girls, they pass down and learn the same social rules. There’s also the chance the path to that social choice is genetic as well, which could explain why tom boys choose to associate with boys more than girls.
Dr. Tannen is careful to say that of course generalization are a dangerous path to go down, but that shouldn’t mean you shouldn’t study and acknowledge when you find statistically significant trends.
I have personally worked hard most of my life to adopt more feminine traits where I recognize they seem more beneficial to both myself and the people around me that I care about (or the world at large). Perhaps one day, such generalizations or labels of “feminine vs. masculine” won’t be so easily applied or even mean anything… however, today is NOT that day.
Thanks James. You got me thinking about the cross-over of stereotypical traits. I think we’re more tolerant of men with feminine traits and women with masculine traits, but we still hold people up to stereotypical standards.
The fact that most readers have some idea what feminine and masculine traits indicates we still hold some generalizations about the way we think about men and women.
“Diversity is illusion when everyone’s the same.” And yet within this post there is significant stereotyping of male and female as non-diverse binary groups. There is great diversity among men…and great diversity among women. We can all think of gender stereotypes and the many men and women in our lives who defy them. “The homogenization of genders diminishes, degrades, and devalues both genders.” Really? I believe that statements like this (assuming the polarization of gender) insidiously reinforce gender inequality and support defining/limiting individuals by societal/cultural stereotypes. Gender is homogenized because we are homo. “It is time that we all perceive gender on a spectrum, not as two opposing sets of ideals.” Emma Watson
Thanks Mary. I’m glad you stopped in to say that all men are not the same and all women are not the same.
Can the author please explain how he/she perceives the above poster’s work to personally “adopt feminine traits” diminishes, degrades, and devalues both genders?
Thanks Mary. If you mean the image on this post it’s about diversity.
We have a lot of female leaders at my workplace. Or as I like to call them, leaders
Point taken, Steve.
I didn’t take the time to read all the comments, so forgive me if this was mentioned. I believe there are traits that are inherent in both sexes. Some of the drawbacks of females is that, generally speaking, they hold on to grudges longer and find it harder to let go when “injured” emotionally. There are generally inherent good and bad qualities for each of the sexes. Of course, fit the person to the job. Though it is not always easy to determine that in an interview or two!
Thanks pmaddams. “Fit the person to the job.” Bingo
I find it interesting….this Leadership Freak Topic has generated a lot of response…I agree with what you have written about the subject, generic or not….it’s true form this one woman’s point of view, I think you hit a Home Run!! 🙂
That’s a tough topic to tackle. I work in an organisation which is 70% female across all staff, and where the leadership split is 80 – 20 female, and many staff feel that it’s a rudderless, inspiration free zone riddled with internal politics and a lack of vision.
I’ve never put that down to gender, but down to the people involved, the structures that they have created and the usual petty fighting over empires and boundaries. Conversely, as a male I feel I display many of the traits listed above yet am viewed as a bit of an oddity for my behaviours which focus on relationships over plans and emotion over process; I’m a valued oddity, but an oddity nonetheless. It’s not that I am an oddity, its just that I don’t fit into a prevailing cultural model set by leaders who just happen to be female.
Generally agree with and put into practice much of what I read here but because of personal expeirence and the basic logic about diversity many others have posted on here, I really struggle to buy into this one.
That Is Very Correct. I am a software engineer in India. My experiences are limited with my age, but still I can be a honest leader in my organization. The only reason behind it is pure coordination.
Communication is everything.I believe ” A leader is one who take ownership”.
Great post, Dan, and very true. Men have been in charge for years and judging by the Gallup engagement surveys men have proven incapable of causing employees to be fully engaged. So it is about time we gave women the chance to show their mettle.
I have two daughters who have always been able to turn poor performers into superstars, much to the chagrin of their mostly male bosses. It is like promotion is out of the question for them.
Having personally caused several workforces to choose to become highly motivated and fully engaged, I know the right actions, why they are right, and why others are wrong. Most men use the wrong actions while women attempt to use the right ones much more frequently. It is easy to get women to adopt the right actions, much harder to get the men to do so. As Richard Branson says, listening is the most important leadership skill and the women are far better at that than men. Generally, women know why this is true while men generally don’t.
Yes, discrimination is legal, but society still discriminates against women. Vast income inequality exists between men and women even controlling for education and the same job. Women make 2/3 of that of a man, and yes, they are smarter, more driven and more effective leaders. I wrote about this in piece on my blog.
I agree on some positive points about women taking the lead. For one, my mom proved to be an effective communicator, an inspiring co-head of the family, untarnished integrity and treated everybody fairly. But on the contrary, I encountered another leader, in public office, who showed very selective in building relationship. To survive, she pampered her management team members deployed in 5 different geographical areas of operations. On the contrary, she was very unpopular among her direct subordinates in the “command center” In effect, she, became less effective in communicating to some, effective to others.The most important thing about leadership is vision, something I have yet to see on her. Peace.