I like to talk about unpopular opinions. After all, my brand is called Tough Convos for a reason. Not because I welcome antagonism, but because I’m wise enough to know that unless I challenge my own opinions (and those of others), and do a deep dive into the perspectives of others, I could never have a true understanding of the situation, problem, goal or solution.
Instead, this Women's month 2022, I imagine a world where women are appreciated, celebrated and empowered to take their rightful place in society as the queens they are. Where they can be anything they want to be - including mothers, business women, social developers, technologists, educators, protectors of wisdom, healers and professionals at anything they do.
Equal yet distinct leaders who collaborate with men to advance our societies. Yes! I said collaborate.
Why must it be a competition? Why must it be either male or female?
Why can’t it be communal, hand-in-hand, cooperative?
It can. But it takes a deep shift in our collective social mindset; likely our universal unconscious bias. We now know there are extreme benefits to conscious and inclusive leadership. Why are we not readily tapping into them?
First off, we should step back and take a high level view of the ideal relationship between women and men, as it appears from much research there is good reason why we are different and that we both bring immense value to leadership. But it’s necessary to examine why and how we’ve been pitted against each other over time, and what that has done to our ability to lead collectively and effectively; to lead families, companies and nations.
Is it the nuclear family that has been at the centre of the destruction of our bond? Religion? Politics? Power? By examining these historical inequalities in our current context, with a fresh inclusive lens, with the intention of ridding our archaic governments of legislation that hinders that exact progress and eliminating mindsets of control that the elite have established and implanted over millennia, we would naturally be uplifting our women.
Then collectively, we can return to a time of prosperity by building off the idea that we are a team, and can focus on what we’re great at, what each individual is better at or more naturally adept at. That is wise, not discriminatory. Not unlike how the challenges of working remote have significantly impacted women’s lives, livelihoods and female leadership in general. But it has also exposed gaps where systems should be more agile, where men should step in or step out, and where women are exposed most or flourish most.
So what is gender equality you ask?
Let’s start by envisioning the ideal:
A world where every woman is given equal opportunities as any man, and is free of oppression, control and discrimination. Where she can walk free at night, love who she loves, wear what she wants, speak how she speaks and be heard no matter where she stands; no matter how tall, dark-skinned, wealthy, or well spoken.
Utopia? For the cynical perhaps.
It is beyond clear from history that when the woman is praised, the society flourishes. But male bashing doesn't even the score nor does it uplift us. It pushes our men to the fringes of self-protection, cowardice and complacency. So I find myself today coming at female leadership from a different perspective: what if we’ve been looking at it all wrong? What if conscious and inclusive leadership is really collective leadership? What if women could be partnered with men in an experiment to see how well they do together as opposed to against each other?
Join us on March 14th at 830pm EST for our Tough Convo on Inclusive leadership and how that intersects with female leadership.
Don’t be late to the party! The caravan is moving forward with or without you. Preferably with;)