The association of men with the term leader is a centuries old concept; this, however, is being revolutionized in the world of today as the world progresses every second. Females have been coming forward for many years in prominent fields of life and exhibiting their talent as leaders. It might be true that women lack in some areas, but their unique leadership styles help them pull through every obstacle. History has seen many women leaders who have contributed to the world by their remarkable aptitude; some extremely prominent and unforgettable figures are Queen Victoria, Queen Elizabeth, Benazir Bhutto, Hillary Clinton, Helen Clark and Mother Teresa.
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Dr. Musimbi Kanyoro, who is the Secretary General of World Young Women’s Christian Association, clearly states that domination is no longer a leadership style that works on the people of the 21st century. The reasons for this are that everybody has become extremely independent and do not accept of taking orders from others. The traits of caring women to keep families together facilitates her in uniting and organizing volunteers whom she helps in realizing the need for the contribution towards the society by empathizing (Lowen; N.D). Dr. Kanyoro is, thus, a clear example of a ‘participative/people-oriented’ leader. This is a style that focuses more on team work and building great interpersonal relationships with one’s colleagues.
Dr. Kanyoro does not believe in ordering or bossing around her subordinates; this also gives birth to a level of respect among the team members. This strengthens the ease and comfort of sharing ideas and innovation techniques and negates the idea of suppressing one’s suggestion in fear of offending your leader. Simply put, it is the democratic way of working – for the people and by the people. Also, such leaders encourage the involvement of employees in major decision making processes – this involvement enables them to feel a greater bond with the organization giving a rise to their commitment and loyalty level. This directly enhances the productivity rates and boosts the entire working environment; enabling the leader to fulfill his core aim – success of the organization. This mutually benefits both the leader and team member by giving them a chance to grow, progress and learn from their past mistakes. There is delegative culture as there is no use of authority or abuse of power; the leader guides his/her members to stay on the right track and keeps monitoring them besides allowing participation.
The Queen Elizabeth I, who started ruling a huge chunk of the world at only an age of 25, might have been underestimated by a few due to her gender and age. But her rule proved to be one of the longest and steady ones in history. Despite of being a woman, she ruled with incredible ambition, accomplishment and promise; her leadership style was not only astute and resourceful, but at the same time, it was extremely influential and forceful. Forceful does not mean that people were not happy under her rule; the fact that she knew what she wanted and expected her orders to be fulfilled makes it forceful. However, at the same time, she made sure that her orders were rational – therefore, we can say that she was assertive. Her style of leadership comes under ‘authoritative’ style. Suggestions and contribution of ideas towards decision making is not appreciated under this way of leading; leaders tend to abuse their authority at times, but it is their intention to use it for the progression of the organization or the society.
In the modern world of today, women leaders are increasing rapidly and rampantly; gender biases have been thrusted aside by the females of today. Generally, there is still a need for more females to come up in the leadership arena and utilize the unique capabilities of different leadership styles that they possess, so that this world can become a better place.
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