Reflections on Leadership: Stay True To The Calling

Reflections on Leadership: Stay True To The Calling
Recently I had the great pleasure of speaking at two leadership conferences that got me to thinking about my own leadership as a calling.  As many of you know, I have been writing on the topic of women's leadership since my first book, Leading Ladies, was published in 2000. My most recent book, Influence Starts with "I" focuses on developing the skill (or art) of influence --the power to effect change in people teams or organizations for the good of...

Influence Starts with “I”—Who before What!

Influence Starts with “I”—Who before What!
What is Influence? Is it getting others to do what I want? Is it persuading another to follow my recommendations? Whatever it is, we know leaders do it. Leaders influence. So, recently in an executive education course of about fifty women, I asked these leaders to define influence. Their definitions fell into two groups. Some talked about a person with influence. They defined an influencer (the "who" of influence), while others defined&n...

Leadership Habits: It’s All About the Process!

Leadership Habits: It’s All About the Process!
“How long does it take to form a habit?” “How long does it take to break a habit?” These two questions recently asked by one of my leadership coachees got me to thinking about the processes of breaking and forming habits. Before I answer the timing question, though, let’s start with some basics. Habits are behaviors or actions that you do on a regular basis without consciously thinking about them. Effective habits help each of us to cons...

Make Time for Strategic Thinking

Make Time for Strategic Thinking
As a leadership consultant and coach, one of the biggest barriers I see for emerging leaders is their lack of time for strategic thinking. Whether your workplace is the corporation, the church, university or a community agency, leaders must see the big picture of the organization or institution, think strategically about the interconnecting parts of the organization and understand the context or community which the organization serves. Too often I see w...

Turn off the Autopilot

Turn off the Autopilot
Have you found yourself running on autopilot lately? Autopilot is a feature of commercial airplanes in which flight conditions, routes and destinations (among other things) are preprogrammed into the aircraft’s navigational system. The autopilot function literally controls flying the airplane while the human pilot sleeps, reads or whatever. How many of you are moving through life on autopilot? Because there are tasks that you do day in and day out, y

Building Connections for Success: A Look Back to Help You Move Forward

Building Connections for Success: A Look Back to Help You Move Forward
Women need each other to build bridges to our success. Without these bridges, too many of us just fall through the cracks. One of the core principles I have come to embrace for cultivating women’s leadership in organizations and institutions is to help each of us develop and cultivate the network of people who provide support, encouragement, mutual resources, and feedback to each of us.  Back in my early days of leadership training and coaching, when wome

Leading through the Ages

Leading through the Ages
I am a career organizational consultant, inspirational speaker, trainer or leader of learning sessions, and a former university professor. I have made and still make a living through words. And standing on my feet. Just recently, I was musing with a colleague  that I can't lead learning sessions today the way I did twenty, even ten, years ago. • Back then I wore three and a half-inch pumps and stood for almost eight hours. Now if I tried that, my fee...

20 Inspiring Quotes from Women Leaders

20 Inspiring Quotes from Women Leaders
1 Give light and people will find the way. ~ Ella Baker ~ 2 Leaders do not ask for the task, but are tracked down by the spirit of the times until it consumes them; they reach a point where they become the symbol of the disaffected and the movement swirling around them. ~ Coretta Scott King ~ 3 When the whole world is silent, even one voice becomes powerful. ~ Malala Yousafzai ~ 4 I will urge you to transform, to find your voice and then work on you...

6 Leadership Lessons from the Queen Mother of Wakanda

6 Leadership Lessons from the Queen Mother of Wakanda
I walked into the Manhyia Palace Museum, in Ghana, West Africa and the tour guide greeted my group with this message: “In our society we believe in a democratic form of leadership in which we always have two leaders—a man and a woman—who share leadership responsibilities. You see, the man can understand the needs and issues of men, and the woman can understand the needs and issues of women.” Thus, the tour guide began our exploration of what Osei Kwado c

Goal Setting for WELL Women

Goal Setting for WELL Women
How many of you have dreaded getting started on a new routine? Whether it’s a new fitness routine or new eating plan or looking for a new job that better aligns with your vocation, getting motivated to start a new venture can be tough.  So today I want to encourage you with some tips on goal-setting that may make your venture a little easier. Last week I set a goal to exercise one hour on the elliptical machine at the gym every day for five days straigh...