Great leaders don’t set out to be a leader, they set out to make a difference. It is never about the role but always about the goal.
I remember when I was growing up I always used to be the one to raise my hand, volunteer first and voice out. I was not a shy kid like the others – I was the loud, hyper-active and opinionated! Even though I was and still am a very respectful person, I just was never satisfied with settling for anything that did not sit right with me, I always had to be the one who would ask many questions until I understood or the one who would disobey the order if I felt like it was not right for me to follow. In doing all that I did, I always saw that it would ignite those around me and they would push me to do more as if they were asking me to be their voice as they felt silenced by their fears. You are a born leader my parents would say to me, my response to that was always negative because growing up in a household were your parents are in leadership as Pastors I paid attention to the downfalls of what came with being a leader and I just never wanted to be one! I began the journey of running from who I am so that I could fit in and be like everyone else. After running for so long I began to lose sense of who I was and that is when my real struggles began. Knowing deep down that I wanted to make a difference in women’s life and motivate the youth to follow their dreams, I just felt like I had already disqualified myself from that and I just didn’t believe in me like I used to so I decided to let that dream die! As time passed I just finally allowed myself to loosen the pressure of becoming and just live in the moment. It all restarted at university when I would take lead in groups for projects, delegating, motivating them and inspiring them through my own actions. This activated me and before I knew it I started my own movement called Ladies Let’s Talk – a movement set out to inspire, motivate, educate and transform the lives of woman by dealing with the issues of the heart, helping them heal their wounds from past life experiences then encouraging them to move forward and become the woman they are destined to become! Alongside that movement I have other projects that I am working on that focus on empowering the young leaders of today by gathering them to network and connect and I am also a motivational speaker. I can go on and on about my story but I think you have a good understanding of where I have come from. My 4 top tips that I would give to female leaders
1. YOU MUST BELIEVE IN YOURSELF.
How can you expect anyone else to believe in you when you don’t believe in yourself? Yes it is easier said than done but you must in order to become a great leader. You carry a vision that many may doubt or even try to destroy but when you have self believe that it is possible and that you can bring it to life then nothing will stop you. I always say YOUR GREATSES ENEMY IS YOUR INNER-ME! Be your greatest cheerleader and assure yourself daily of who you are.
2. You give trust before you get trust.
I always try to see the best in people no matter what and some may call it a weakness but I call it giving other an opportunity to become. I have trusted the wrong people who have left me broken and wanting to give up. I have allowed people into my personal and business life, treated them like family and gave them the best version of me, supported them, believed in them and still they left me. Now it is normal to develop a wall and stop trusting and just focus on yourself to avoid experiencing the same things over and over again. But a true leader yes learns from past mistakes but always works on trusting again because for those who follow you to trust you they need to see you giving it and that may require you to trust them before they trust you – yes be cautious and protective of you but still you must be their mirror on how it is done.
3. You welcome challenges.
If attaining success was easy then everyone would be successful! Challenge tests you in ways you never expect, you can either learn from them or be defeated by them. Great leaders step up to the challenge, and come face-to-face with their level of commitment. Nothing great comes easy so put on your big girl pants and get through this one like you did the last one! Don’t stop because this challenge feels harder than the last one rather fight through until you look back because it would have become another experience you went through in your journey of becoming.
4. You either lead by example or you don't lead at all.
Many times we look at those who have gone before us and envy the life they live now and wish we could have what they have, but let’s be truthful if you want their level of success then you must be willing to go through what they went through to get there! Before your preach it make sure you have lived it, you must be an authentic leader, one who actually knows what she is talking about, show me your scars of your been through and I will trust you to lead me because your life is a testament to your words. Leading by example also mean allowing yourself to be venerable – that’s how you get to be a role model, one people look up to for inspiration because they see your human side as much as they see your super woman side! Lastly admit when you have failed or are struggling because there are too many people who paint a picture of a life that many people can’t connect to because they feel like their struggles are only unique to them but if you share with them your struggles then you will start creating leaders rather than followers!
By Perseverance Magay