Leadership is having a vision, sharing that vision and inspiring others to support your vision while creating their own. – Mindy Gibbins-Klein
Being a mom is a tough job, being a mom and a stepmom is the hardest job I’ve ever had. Through cleaning up puke, teaching responsibility, pushing away bad dreams and helping with mean kids on the playground (just to name a few) We, moms, need to put on our superhero cape. If you’re anything like me, the doubts that fill my mind often keep my cape hidden and unused – but no more! This broken world needs us mom’s to step up and lead with our cape waving in the wind. We need Motherly leadership at work and at home. Since we are natural born leaders – we just have to tap into the superpower leadership we already have and put it to work.
These 6 things are some gifts I’ve uncovered that make moms good leaders at home and at work. (by the way, I don’t have a leadership title at work, but believe we can lead precisely where we are, right now!)
Mission-driven: As a mom, we have a mission or vision for our kids. My purpose for the girls it to put them into the world with the knowledge and wisdom they need to be prepared for challenged that come there way and teach them where to look if they find themselves in unknown territory. I hope to do this by talking about real life things and God every day.
This happens at work too, we need to have a bigger vision than just showing up for work, and as a woman, we are naturally given the gift of forwarding thinking, planning, preparing, and multi-tasking today’s goals with the future goals.
Mentors: Mentors don’t just tell people what to do they explain why, they empower, encourage, coach and guide. To be a good mentor we need to believe in our Mentee/children on a deep level. We need to help fill in their knowledge gaps and seek opportunities to help them grow and excel.
At the dinner table, we have some great conversations about how to handle situations that the girls struggle with. I try not to give them the answer to their problem, but encourage them to use their mind by asking questions about feelings, what they think they should do, why…. and then give advice at the end.
In the workplace, we need to do the same by believing in our colleagues, asking more questions and encouraging others to find their higher vision as they uncover boundaries that need to be set, rules they want to live by and the character they want to develop.
Create a village: We’ve all heard the saying, “It takes a village to raise a child.” As mom’s, we empower and work together with our spouse to make our vision a reality.
At work, we partner up with multiple departments, other colleagues with similar ideas and work together for the successful implementation of the more important vision.
I often end up taking on a lot and trying to do it all by myself. When asked what my greatest weakness is during a job interview it’s that I don’t work well with people when they don’t keep up with me, but I can not, and you can not do big things alone.
We need a village for our career and our home. It’s about sharing your vision, inspiring others to believe in it and encouraging them to find their own.
Lead by Example: Integrity and character are some of the most important traits to have when leading and to make sure that others develop and walk out their integrity and character, we need to lead by example.
I have never been more aware of how I’m leading than when I watch my children do what I do. I’ve also started to notice it at work. If I set boundaries that will leave me out of office gossip, people respect me and change their attitude as well, but if I allow the complaining and gossip in – I actually fall victim to it instead of setting the standard of a positive attitude.
Our colleagues and our children are watching us, it’s a lot of pressure, but we need to live out our days with integrity and character.
‘Eat Last’: Simon Sinek wrote a book called, Leaders Eat Last. It’s a great book about how good leaders pull teams together by helping others rather than falling into the world of “one-upping” each other. It seems that everywhere I look, everyone is ego hungry and fighting their way to the front of the line to, not only eat their share but everyone else’s too.
Servant leadership at home and at work will help you gain respect and help you become a trusted advisor.
Your servant leadership attitude will also soak up into those around you, inspiring them to do the same. I teach my girls the famous Zig Ziglar quote “you can have anything in life you’ll ever want, as long as you help enough other people get what they want.”
Have a vision – share the vision- believe in the vision- follow through on the vision