THE BLOG

Natural Leadership Qualities

08/15/2014 06:35 pm ET | Updated Oct 15, 2014
  • Christa Dowling Media executive specializing in cross-cultural activities
MoMo Productions via Getty Images

It is said "No woman or man is an island." Indeed not. It is also said that women have skills that make them natural leaders. Mark Twain coined the phrase: "The difference between the right word and the almost right word is the difference between lightning and a lightning bug."

Women have the ability of lightning, of finding words rapidly, articulating ideas; executing skills like networking, collaboration, empathy, inclusion of others and sharing power. They also have mental flexibility, intuition, imagination, planning ability, verbal acuity and are more risk-aware. All these are leadership traits and benefit from women's natural talents. Educated women are influential in offices and homes around the world and provide a broader perspective and new ideas.

In her research with Dr. Helen Fisher, Barbara Annis, the expert on gender intelligence, writes:

Women bring a different cooperative way of thinking; a gift of reading people, networking ability, negotiating skills; a drive to nurture children, kin and business connections in local and world communities; interest in ethnic diversity and education; a keen imagination; a win-win attitude, mental flexibility, an ability to embrace ambiguity; predisposition to examine complex social, environmental and political issues with a broad contextual long-term view... and women have patience. Once all these ideas are unleashed and accepted in our modern world societies will benefit...even in lands where all these ideas are currently shackled.

Women in legal professions are enlarging our view of justice. Elaine Papas, Esq. International Business Lawyer and Psychologist states:

Natural leaders, women or men, must listen and hear. It is essential to stay focused so the team stays on task. Every new project or idea creates other opportunities, but first one must complete the task at hand. Time has a way of showing truth and reason. Patience is a valuable and essential asset, yet not to the point where it becomes an excuse for not taking action that may be difficult but must be taken.

Men focus their thinking on one thing at a time and divide relevant material, discard what they regard as extraneous, analyze information in a more linear causal way. Their thinking is more compartmentalized and they are not risk-averse and as Professor Higgins sang in My Fair Lady: "Why can't women be more like men."

Self-reflection has disappeared from our common knowledge. Learning about ourselves, knowing ourselves, our histories, even accepting our Achilles heel, for we all have one (an area of weakness or a vunerable spot), and the challenge of our diversity, are important facts to consider. Leaders must also deal with anger as we all do, either at themselves or others. Patience can be learned, so can anger be mastered, Learning to control anger, teaches us to increase power over our thinking and actions.

Is patience overrated, No, not really. Life demands it!. Having patience, waiting for a better chance, is part of life and is demanded by it and can be learned. Our world of instant gratification and instant information ... a few clicks and patience is constantly assaulted by facts, good and bad news. Consider relaxing before you make any decision as a way of controlling impatience: breathing in deeply... breathing out forcefully a few times will move your energy level and can impact decisions and the quality of life. It is calming... easier said than done. Try it out...it helps!

Make a list of what causes you to lose patience:
Multitasking--try to do one thing at a time;
Delegate responisibilty;
Think of what influences your patience negatively;
Are you anxious, worried , and stressed-out?
Are you spending sleepless nights?
Are there people in your life who trigger your impatience?
Avoid people who are always complaining;
Find people who share your integrity;
Find people who inspire you;
Designate Social Networking to special times;
Emails don't need to be answered immediately, unless they pertain to a special task at hand.

Natural leadership demands a defining and clear attitude, some common sense and remembering
that developing ideas and thoughts take time and cannot be rushed. Put a smile on your face...it will be a shield of positiveness, even through hard times. Leadership, like life, is a learning curve.