The Servant Leader is servant first...Robert K. Greenleaf

Servant Leadership Email


I really like this article I’m sending you.  I’ve been fortunate to have been raised with a healthy respect for women and an education for the unique skills that women and men have that seem to for the most part be gender-identified.  I admire strong, effective leaders, but especially strong female leaders. There is a lot they have learned to overcome, overlook, forgive, and address along their paths to leadership.  

A smooth sea never made a skillful mariner.

I’ve been fortunate to have had some great female bosses and even a great female pastor when we lived in Houston, Texas. Leadership for women in the church world is especially tough. I cheered the fact that the History Channel featured a strong female presence in Mary as one of the decision making disciples in The Bible. Sadly, I also know that many men in the church world probably frowned on that.  Jesus chose a woman to be the first to preach the Gospel and she did so to a bunch of doubting men. They listened.

For me a successful leadership team would include strong representation from different perspectives of an organization charged with educating us, the team, with their perspective and advocating for what they believe is right. That team definitely includes strong female voices.  Sometimes we are loud, but we are always respectful and supportive no matter what. It takes time to build that trust in a team.

With the passing of Margaret Thatcher, I’m reminded of another strong voice. She was a woman who not only led a nation, but helped lead the world. She was awesome—politics aside. I remember when she left office even her staunchest political enemies admired her and complemented her on her service.  She challenged them to be the best they could be, even in their opposition of her politics. She was herself and carried the office of Prime Minister with dignity and a whole lot of respect.


Why Women Should Lead Boldly
Puja Ghelani — 

Sharon Hadary and Lauren Henderson, authors of “How Women Lead: The 8 Essential Strategies Successful Women Know,” recently wrote a blog entitled “Why Women Should Lead Boldly.” They spelled out six main characteristics that women embody that lay the foundation for successful leadership:

Women are values-based
Women are holistic
Women are inclusive and collaborative
Women invest time in consultation
Women create shared vision, values, and goals
Women generate trust from employees

All of these characteristics are critical for a successful company and a productive and enjoyable work environment. While it would be horribly remiss to say that men do not embody the qualities listed above, of course many of them do, it is safe to say that on average, women exercise them to a greater degree.
This is why companies with more women on the senior leadership team perform better, why the title of the article is so thought-provoking. This is why women should lead boldly.

The research that shows how capable women are as leaders is relatively new since concrete, supporting data was only getting published around 2006. Only then did many women start feeling validated in their unique abilities as Strategistas. Before this research was so widely circulated, many women in leadership thought they needed to be more like their male counterparts to be successful. A modern version of feminism tries to prove that there is no difference between a man and a woman. The mindset many self-proclaimed feminists have is that “Whatever a man can do, a woman can do better.”

Rather than getting caught up on comparisons, a woman’s greatest strength lies in being herself. Renowned writer Alice Walker coined a term to describe a woman who is unashamedly feminine: A Womanist. Rather than trying to be a man, a Womanist understands that her greatest strengths lie in her unique qualities and abilities as a woman. She understands that women aren’t men and don’t need to be. As a woman, she can do things and see things from a perspective that many men would not have considered. Women shouldn’t try to be like men; women have a lot to offer as women. This is why women should lead boldly.

ACCESS Family Care

What is Servant Leadership?

The skills of influencing people to enthusiastically work toward goals identified as being for the common good, with character that inspires confidence.
--James C. Hunter
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