Gender shouldn’t be a factor in whether or not a person can be a great leader — a person’s leadership abilities should depend on their individual strengths and personality traits. However, in many cases, women aren’t encouraged to take on leadership roles as often as their male counterparts, contributing to an imbalance of who’s in power.
We asked female leaders to share their thoughts on women in power. Here are reasons women make great leaders.
They value work-life balance.
“Women are great leaders because we are able to balance professional and personal leadership skills. It’s easier to approach a women leader with a personal request, or a sensitive question. I care about my team and their well-being, which includes their performance at work and their work-life balance. I also find women more proactive in becoming mentors, and sometimes it’s already such an open and communicative relationship that the transition to mentor is easy.” – Amy Killoran, creative manager, I Love Travel
They are empathetic.
“Most women are naturally empathetic and value relationships. This enables them to have a strong understanding of what drives and motivates people, and how to acknowledge different people for their performance.” – Anna Crowe, CEO and founder, Crowe PR
They focus on teamwork.
“The women [I’ve worked with] consistently demonstrate passion, enthusiasm and an immense capacity to serve and be served by others. I’ve observed women make bold and wise decisions as leaders while relying on others to be part of their team. The environment is less authoritarian and more cooperative and family-like, but with solid leadership.” – Katharine M. Nohr, principal, Nohr Sports Risk Management
They’re good at multitasking.
“Women make great leaders as we are natural multitaskers. The ability to decisively and quickly respond to simultaneous and different tasks or problems at a time is a critical component to successful leadership.” – Carolann Tutera, president, SottoPelle
They’re motivated by challenges.
“We are creative problem solvers motivated by obstacles. The desire to overcome a challenge fuels us to get things accomplished. Leaders don’t take ‘no’ for an answer.” – Jackie Zlatanovski, founder, Flik Flops
They’re strong communicators.
“Communication is said to be among a woman’s strongest skill — and female leaders know how to use it! Whether communicating with employers, co-workers, or partners, an open communication stream allows for clarity in executing roles and responsibilities. Female business leaders are able to communicate regularly, clearly and openly.” – Tina Bacon-DeFrece, president, Big Frog
They dream big.
“Women make great leaders because they have an innate ability to dream big, challenge assumptions and inspire teams — and they know how to translate big ideas into concrete action and results.” – Angela Dejene, executive vice president, Crosswind Media & Public Relations
They handle crisis situations well.
“Many women, especially moms, are trained caretakers and know how to deal with crisis situations at home with compassion and patience. These attributes become very relevant when a woman leader is dealing with crisis situations whether this is related to HR or [clients].” – Huma Gruaz, president and CEO, Alpaytac PR
They have high emotional intelligence.
“Emotional intelligence — the ability to recognize emotions in yourself and others and relate — is something that has recently gained momentum as an essential leadership behavior. I believe this is something that comes more naturally to women than men, and is something that I’ve personally encountered in my career. To truly create a great place to work and to get the best of out employees, demonstrating emotional intelligence as a leader is critical.” – Lakshmi Raj, co-founder and co-CEO, Replicon
“Women make great leaders because we are flexible, and agile. We can see the direction we thought we should take our company in isn’t working and we regroup and change course for the better without much deliberation.” – Danita Harris, CEO, Rated M