Confidence is the key to leadership


You’re not a good boss until you know this: confidence is the key to leadership for the business woman.

The role of a leader is more than just being able to say you run a company or you’re in charge of a team. It is also about being an example to those you lead and making tough decisions. All of this, of course, is often a result of a high level of confidence.

Much of the time, if asked to think of a leader, we will probably name a male leader and more often than not, also a the charismatic style of leader. And why not? Generally speaking, men tend to hold more positions of leadership than women, with a recent study showing that “Only 21.8 per cent of national parliamentarians were female as of 1 July 2013…”.

Men have also proven, time and time again, that leading a company or a team is more than just proving you can do it or you’re the best one to do the job. It is also very much about confidence — not only confidence that you can do the job (regardless of experience), but that you can lead the team or company to the best results and on to further success.

Such confidence, though, is often harder for women to master than it is for men. Too often, women assume that men “know it all” before leading, when in fact, they often have confidence in their ability to deliver and give it a go rather than having all the experience to back it up. This is something women need to learn to do.

Don’t wait until you have 100% of the experience; just be confident in your ability to deliver!

Francisco Dao writes in ‘Without Confidence, There is No Leadership’ that “At the end of the day, leadership is about having the confidence to make decisions. If someone is afraid to make and commit to decisions, all of the communication and empowerment in the world won’t make a squat of difference”.

Being a confident leader is more than being appointed the job for your skills and abilities. It is your ability to listen to your instincts, something women are generally good at.  Women are known to read and understand body language better than men (which could well be the foundation of so-called “women’s intuition””.

Confidence can be a tricky thing to calculate. Too little and you may not get the top job;  too much may come off as arrogance in the minds of colleagues. Having the right amount, however much it is to us individually, can go a long way. As Dao also wrote, “Not only does confidence allow you to make the tough decisions that people expect from a strong leader but it’s reassuring to your employees”. This is where being confident builds respect with the team you are leading.

So next time you see a male showing confidence in a meeting or at an event, ask yourself, what is he doing or thinking that is different to me?

YOU can be just as confident … so go be it, and see the difference.


About Rowena Nagy

Rowena Nagy is a Journalist at The Business Woman Media. A graduate in Journalism, Media and Communications, she is passionate about in writing, travel journalism, video journalism and Public Relations.

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