Do men and women lead differently? You betcha we do and researchers have found that women tend to have a distinct leadership style that shapes how we run our teams. Specifically, studies have shown we tend to use what’s called the transformational leadership style.
As transformational leaders, we aim to enhance the motivation, morale and job performance of our teams to identify needed change, create a shared vision and guide through inspiration. Here’s some strategies to leverage our natural inclination and excel through transformational leadership.
5 Strategies to Being Transformational:
Strategy #1: Development Over Goals
Setting and achieving goals is incredibly important for business success. However, transformational leaders see employee development as a side door to achieving goals. Female managers should aim to accomplish goals by transforming our teams into better people.
Key tactics of transformational leaders:
Strategy #2: Don’t Be Transactional
The opposite of transformational leadership is transactional leadership. Picture the boss who sits in his or her office giving orders and receiving progress updates from his or her employees, but rarely engages with them on a personal level. It has been proven that people work harder for people they like and trust.
Key tactics of transactional leaders include:
Strategy #3: Banning Bossy and Bitchy
From a young age, girls are taught that when we speak up and take charge, we are bossy or even bitchy, but on the other hand, boys are called leaders for behaving in the exact same ways. Sadly, this phenomenon plays a huge role in why women are significantly less likely to pursue leadership opportunities than men.
Strategy #4: Strength-Based Tasks
One of the best things women can do as bosses and transformational leaders is assigning people tasks according to strengths. Rather than delegating work based on time or workload, learn what each member of your team is naturally good at and enjoys and give them as much work as possible that fits that strength.
Strategy #5: Over-Communicate
As we learned, female bosses already are naturally inclined to verbally communicate. This is the key to success. When your team feels comfortable being transparent with you, you’re less likely to have to deal with major problems because we feel safe coming to you for help the moment issues start to arise.
As women, we have a tremendous opportunity to be incredible bosses, owners and managers. We simply need to leverage our natural female strengths and put them into action.