Power Play: 9 Secrets Of Successful Female Leaders Revealed

November 15, 2012  |  
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Do women lead a certain way? According to Sharon Hadary and Laura Henderson, authors of  How Women Lead: The 8 Essential Strategies Successful Women Know, there are fundamental differences between women and men business leaders. Inc.com asked Hadary and Henderson the secrets of successful women’s leadership styles. Madame Noire asked a group of powerful female executives to reveal theirs as well.

Own Your Destiny–and Judge Yourself Only by Your Own Metrics

Hadary and Henderson found in their research that women who achieve most are also women who define success in their own terms. And that they aim high. “Women should think of their businesses as a $1 million business from Day One,” says Henderson. “This drives how they structure the business, the decisions they make, and the way they present themselves and the business.”

Determination, Not Destiny

“The key to my success has been to never give up on my dreams. I do what I must do to achieve them. Why? I only have one life to live and working toward those dreams make it worth living,” explains  civil rights activist and lawyer Deadria Farmer-Paellmann, Executive Director, Restitution Study Group.

Lead Like a Woman

Don’t be afraid of being a powerful women, so forget imitating men in business. “Women think more holistically. That means, when women view a situation, they have a tendency to go beyond the specific facts and the numbers to take into account personnel and organization considerations. As a result, they identify opportunities, risks, and gaps that others often miss, strengthening their competitive edge,” reports Inc.

Have A Vision Plan

“I can sum up fine things I follow. Define vision and set up strategy; build consensus, collaborate and partner; support and challenge; share and inspire,” says Atim Annette Oton, co-owner, Calabar Imports  and creative director, The Creative Side Fashion Incubator.


Nurture Your Greatest Asset: You

Don’t forget about you. As you grow, so does your vision and thus your company. “The most successful leaders are life-long learners. Set aside time to attend conferences and seminars, read, participate in networks that provide industry knowledge, and meet with experts,” writes Inc. “Don’t forget to complement your professional networks with personal networks of friends, like-minded women, and colleagues who will share experiences and knowledge, support you in the tough times, and celebrate with you over successes.”

Stay Focused

“My success secret is: Don’t let other people or things distract you. Stay focused and have faith,” advises Emmy award-winning makeup artist Julia Davis of Julia Jovone Beauty.

Eyes on the Prize

“Success, it can be quite easy to obtain as long as you don’t allow society and/or people you surround yourself with dictate the rules. If you are passionate about, what you can’t seem to shake from your mind and what you can’t live without, then ultimately it comes down to two important qualities to get yourself started,” says  Michelle D. Roberts, a paralegal at a criminal defense law firm. First, you must visualize each and every step of your dream or goal. Visualizing your dreams happening is pertinent to making it happen. And lastly, robust self-discipline will propel you each step of the way in keeping your eyes on the prize.”

Celebrate the Journey

Try not to get so caught up in the whirlwind of doing business that you are not enjoying your success and how you got there. “Recognize that success is not a one-time shot. It is about composing a life over time. Take the time to enjoy the journey and celebrate the successes along the way,” says Inc.

Woman in the Mirror

“Check yourself. Self-reflect often on how you’re doing what you’re doing and the results you’re getting. Make re-evaluation practices a part of your modus operandi, e.g. post mortem meetings (even if you’re the only person in the room) to consider what worked for you and what didn’t, and why. Check out the practices versus results of people and organizations you admire,” advises Malaika Adero, Vice President, Senior Editor Atria Books/Simon and Schuster.

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