What makes a great leader?


It’s not easy being a leader; it takes determination, concentration and resilience to keep calm and carry on. Men and women each bring something different to leadership, with both being just as capable as each other. However, the world is only just catching up, with an increasing amount of women beginning to realise their capabilities. But with women only holding under a quarter of senior roles across the world in 2018, a decrease from 25% in 2017 according to Catalyst, progress is not going fast enough. So what does it take to be a leader? And how can women make sure they reach these positions?


When I think of a good leader, I think of someone who has respect for every single person under their leadership. Anoop Sekhon, a franchise business owner of Bluebird Care Greenwich, a leading homecare and live in care provider, understands that just because you are in a position of authority, this does not mean that you are above anyone else. She says: “I believe the best traits a leader should have is to treat people how they want to be treated, so respect for everyone and everything is a must. Honesty is another important attribute and always seeing the positive of every situation, no matter how bleak at the time.”


As Anoop said, a leader must see the best of bad situations, as an important part of leading a team is making sure that everyone’s morale and enthusiasm is 100%. If times are tough and it is clearly getting to you in front of your team, it’s not a motivation booster, and the team will most certainly lose hope and faith in you personally. Anoop knows that having a positive attitude can leave a lasting impression, which is why she counts her sister, mother and grandmother as role models as they do not let obstacles stop them. “All these women have shown strength, determination, and have never given up on their dreams, no matter how far away they appear. These women wake up each day and achieve their goals, face challenges with a smile and do not let anything get in the way of their goals.”


A truly effective leader will be able to develop their team to follow their own initiative, achieve goals and will encourage the ambition of everyone in the business. Jane Perry, a franchise business owner of Bluebird Care Edinburgh, knows that a leader enables others to learn and grow through their guidance, as well as developing the business and its core values, stating: “Your leadership will have an impact on the vision and ethos of the organisation and play an important role in empowering others to develop and use their own leadership skills.

“As a manager, your leadership skills can make a real difference to the service you deliver, the outcomes of people who use your service achieve and, where appropriate, the wider community.”


You are only as good as your team. If they don’t understand your values, then it will be hard to achieve your goals for your business. Victoria Webber, a franchise business owner for Bluebird Care North East Lincolnshire, Lincoln, South Lincolnshire and Harrogate, knows that you need to put in the work with your team, and that a solid and trustworthy group will create a successful business. “I believe the key elements are communication, direction, and support gratification. I will communicate regularly with my team to ensure they understand what my vision is and what they need to do to achieve it. All employees need support, even if they don’t ask for it. It doesn’t take much to ask if someone is getting on ok and to show how much they are appreciated.”

A good business owner must always be a pillar of support for their employees, develop their skills, abilities and character, generate enthusiasm and give credit where credit is due.

As Eleanor Roosevelt once said: “A good leader inspires people to have confidence in the leader – a great leader inspires people to have confidence in themselves.”

The British Franchise Association hold an annual Empowering Women in Business (EWIB) event. This year, it is being held at the Nottingham Belfry on November 15th. It’s the perfect opportunity to for women to come together and share their career journey, learn from each other’s experiences, and network and learn through a series of speeches. For more information, please visit here, or drop us a line at

About Pip Wilkins'

Pip Wilkins is CEO of the British Franchise Association. Pip’s journey into franchising started at the ripe age of 19 years old, and for the past 18 years she worked her way to becoming CEO of the bfa in 2016. Her time working at the bfa has provided a unique opportunity to gain insight from all areas of business and the franchise industry. Pip believes the thriving franchise community is one with representing diversity and a collective passion that is rarely witnessed in business. To find out more about the bfa, follow this link, or to find out more about EWIB follow here.

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