May 12, 2021
For this month’s installment of the EmPOWERment Hub, we bring you a short, but informative podcast: 6 essential lessons for women leaders.
This is a conversation with former Prime Minister of Australia, Julia Gillard, and former Finance Minister of Nigeria, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, both of whom have faced sexism and gender bias in their roles as leaders on the world stage.
Packed into less than 10 minutes, you get very real advice from international trailblazers on the sexism in the halls of power and the dearth of female role models, particularly women of colour. They celebrate Kamala Harris, reference advice from Jacinda Ardern and Hillary Clinton, and emphasize that there is joy in leadership and putting values into action, but women need to go in with their eyes open.
In case you are a parent or caregiver and haven’t had 10 spare minutes since early March of 2020 (we hear you – it’s a podcast for a multi-tasking reason!), here are some key takeaways:
- There is no right way to be a woman leader.
- There will be sexism and stereotyping – be ready for it.
- We need to debunk the gender stereotypes.
- There are structural barriers to women rising in leadership positions – we need to support the systems that need change right now.
- Don’t shy away from taking up space in the world.
- Most importantly: “Go for it!”
If this topic and these women are drawing you in, good news: there is also a book.
Gillard and Okonjo-Iweala remind us that we need to work together to change the rules that keep us at the margins and that we need to be there for each other. These sentiments are particularly true in our current challenging and tragic times. The she-cession is very real, and we will need to lift each other up as we climb out of this.
Strong, compassionate female leadership should be welcomed, encouraged, appreciated, and celebrated right now.