Exclusively written for coachingandlife.com by Jessica Larson

Women leaders the 5 characteristics

Powerful Women Leaders The 5 that makes the difference is rising – Now more than ever, women have risen as among the most competent and effective leaders. Case in point, Forbes’ leadership effectiveness study reveals that women leaders are outpacing their male counterparts by a 5.7-point lead. But just what does set women leaders apart from their colleagues? Here are five of the most valuable characteristics that make powerful women leaders the cream of the crop.

1. Strong emotional Intelligence

Emotional intelligence is one of the most in-demand soft skills for good reason. With this, personal hurdles to effective leadership can be overcome, and team relationships can be strengthened. Leaders who have superb emotional intelligence are usually more self-aware and have an inner balance. As explained in our blog about “How to Succeed While Feeling Good Inner Balance”, having the right inner balance comes from listening to yourself and knowing how to respond to them. Only with this can leaders then appropriately cater to their teams. After all, a leader cannot pour from an empty cup. As such, powerful women leaders are capable of frontloading their emotional intelligence and using this as a tool to improve themselves and their team interactions. Since teams tend to emulate their leaders, this can begin a positive ripple effect of more emotionally intelligent employees.


2. Value of team diversity

Surveys suggest that women are twice as likely to allocate resources towards diversity and inclusion as their male counterparts. As it turns out, cultural and gender diversity is no longer just buzzwords for companies hoping to seem more relevant. Today, countless studies prove that overall diversity can positively impact an organization. This is why Maryville University lists cultural competence as being hugely beneficial to a company both internally and externally. Described as an organization’s respect for and understanding of different cultures, cultural competence can improve collaboration, increase the range of skills, and help entry to new markets. Meanwhile, gender inclusivity can improve team security and communication. Overall, this helps foster a more varied and well-balanced team.


3. Unwavering sense of resilience

Contrary to outdated stereotypes wherein women are deemed “the weaker sex”, evidence reveals that women are actually far more resilient. Studies on resilient leadership by KPMG found that upwards of 95% of women leaders observed better resilience during trying times. This includes making timely decisions, pivoting to manage new challenges, and rolling out relevant team actions. This was found to create a team-wide culture of resilience that saw employees of all ranks better motivating and supporting each other. As a result, this was found to nurture a healthy working environment that can easily overcome challenges and adapt to changes.

4. Ability to effectively mentor

Mentorship has long been regarded as a huge advantage for any professional. Fortunately, women leaders are some of the best suited for the task. This is because not only are women naturally more compassionate, but they’re also privy to more nuanced insight. To elaborate, women leaders have the first hand experience and knowledge needed to overcome gender barriers. This can provide invaluable for any mentee, but especially for minorities who may not receive this same level of insight from leaders who’ve not lived it. Today, many women leaders are at the forefront of mentorship or networking opportunities that aim to uplift other minorities and women.

leadership and leaders

5. Respect for work-life balance

Across the board, women leaders have been found more respectful of prioritizing a work-life balance. This is likely because women have traditionally been expected to wear many hats and take on invisible roles. Consequently, those who make it to senior positions are more attuned to their team’s gripes and preferences. Today, one of the biggest employee expectations is better work-life balance conditions. As per a survey on Entrepreneur, work-life balance is the key to both employee attraction and retention. According to nationwide statistics, working adults are more likely to stay in their present jobs and be more productive if they’re happy with their work-life balance. Effective women leaders are able to satisfy this by finding happy mediums between work and a personal life.

By taking note of the most important traits that successful women leaders have, we can hope that more in the workforce will echo these characteristics. Over time, this can lead to a more gender-balanced and well-rounded professional landscape.

Exclusively written for coachingandlife.com by Jessica Larson