focusing on reality- Female leadership

MaNyathi
Posted October 29, 2020 from Zimbabwe

I have worked in development work with women for fourteen years and something really seems to be not right about priorities. I have seen a lot of women rise to positions of leadership and I still do not see the difference between female and male leadership. This makes me wonder whether female leadership will ever make any difference to ordinary women's lives or if its going to be about statistics without impact. I have seen a lot of the women turn out like the men they replace. I am concerned about what the women want in the leadership sphere is it just to replace the male figure and actually work in the same way that men work or is it to occupy the space of leadership and come up with feminine leadership which should be different. My question is as women what hinders us from coming up with a totally new construct of leadership different from male leadership? I am wondering if we cannot come up with a totally different kind of leadership that has feminine characteristics and test the impact it would have. I know the feminist leadership has been tossed into the leadership arena but I wonder why it has not been grabbed by the female leaders. I would really like us to share our experience of female leadership so we can pick up the best practices. I am waiting to hear from you 

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Tamarack Verrall
Oct 29
Oct 29

Dear Manyathi,
This is such an important question! Thank you for laying it out for us all to think about. Women getting into leadership positions and then falling into acceptance of 'what is' rather than what so many of us are dreaming up, is a problem that has been growing for a long time now. Some of this I believe is women who are wanting to be in these positions and willing to willing to accept without pushing for change so that they can keep the positions, sometimes trying to make small 'acceptable changes', some becoming quiet to stay safe. Like you, and so many sisters here, we have a vision of coming forward together for real change and the safe and free world we know is possible. I believe we can do this, that especially through World Pulse we are meeting the others who believe in real change for the benefit of all.

MaNyathi
Oct 30
Oct 30

Maybe we could start defining how we can pursue female leadership. Thank you very much for your observation

Nini Mappo
Oct 30
Oct 30

Hello Manyathi,
Yours is a deep question worth contemplating on for days, and on different scenarios that call for variant leadership styles. I think one of the greatest problem to curbing their own leadership approach is that women have always felt that their leadership is measured against the male yardstick, and that it can only match up if it incorporates certain aspects of 'male' leadership. Perhaps trying to prove themselves in a male dominated space has kept women focused more on what they must conquer and less on what they have to offer...

MaNyathi
Oct 30
Oct 30

Thank you very much for your observation I think we should be looking at establishing a female yardstick and focusing on what women can offer which is a lot