How to Develop a Leadership Style and Lead Like a Lady

By Kimberley Borgens


Whether you are just starting your entrepreneurial journey or have been in the game for a long time, understanding leadership can be a challenging journey full of obstacles and opportunities. As a devoted advocate for women’s empowerment in business, I am deeply passionate about guiding you on this exhilarating odyssey as we navigate how to develop a leadership style with grace, resilience, and unwavering determination.

Imagine, if you will, a world where your leadership style is not just a reflection of your skills and capabilities but a testament to your authenticity, vision, and unwavering commitment to excellence. Throughout this article, we will embark on a voyage of self-discovery and empowerment, as I equip you with the tools, insights, and strategies you need to thrive as a stand-out leader.

So, my fellow visionaries, are you ready to come along on this extraordinary journey? Join me as we redefine not only how you lead but who you are as a leader.

Understanding Leadership Styles

In leadership, understanding the variety of leadership styles is important in helping us become powerful leaders. As women entrepreneurs carving our paths in male-dominated industries, it’s essential to recognize that our leadership styles are not just a reflection of our skills and capabilities but a testament to our authenticity, resilience, and unwavering determination.

Autocratic

For some, the autocratic leadership style may resonate—a style characterized by decisiveness, vision, and unwavering determination. In the fast-paced world of entrepreneurship, where bold decisions can make or break a business, the autocratic leader provides clarity and direction. She is a force to be reckoned with in an ever-evolving landscape.

Democratic

Yet, for others, the democratic leadership style may hold sway—a style grounded in collaboration, consensus-building, and collective decision-making. In environments where diverse perspectives and innovative thinking are valued, the democratic leader thrives, fostering a culture of inclusivity, empowerment, and shared ownership.

Laissez-faire

And then, there’s the laissez-faire leadership style—a style marked by freedom, flexibility, and a hands-off approach to leadership. While some may view this style as laissez-faire, we recognize its inherent value in fostering creativity, autonomy, and self-expression—a vital ingredient in cultivating a culture of innovation and entrepreneurial spirit.

Transformative

Amidst this mosaic of leadership styles, transformative leadership is a beacon of inspiration—a style grounded in heart-driven leadership and unwavering commitment to a cause or mission. Often associated with paternalistic leadership in nonprofit organizations, the transformative leader rallies others around a shared vision, fostering deep loyalty and dedication to a higher purpose.

Regardless of which leadership style resonates most deeply with you, remember this: your journey is not defined by a single style but by the unique synthesis of strengths, experiences, and values that shape your approach. Celebrate the richness of your experiences, and dare to lead with authenticity, courage, and unwavering conviction.

Linking Behavior Styles to Leadership

Our leadership behavior styles serve as a kind of rhythm, guiding our movements and shaping our interactions with others. As women entrepreneurs navigating the dynamic landscape of business, understanding the link between our behavior styles and leadership is essential to unlocking our full potential as leaders.

The Impact of Pace and Focus

Are you a fast-paced leader fueled by adrenaline and driven by a relentless pursuit of progress? Or perhaps you’re more moderately paced, taking deliberate steps and carefully considering each move before forging ahead. Whatever your speed, embrace it wholeheartedly, for it is the rhythm of your leadership journey—a journey defined by resilience, adaptability, and unwavering determination.

But our behavior styles extend beyond mere tempo—they shape the very essence of our leadership presence, influencing how we connect, communicate, and inspire others. Are you task-focused, driven by achieving goals and objectives? Or are you relationship-focused, prioritizing connection, collaboration, and empathy above all else? Whatever your focus, honor it as a reflection of your unique strengths and values.

How to Develop a Leadership Communication Style

Here are some practical strategies for adapting your communication style to match different behavior styles:

  • Matching Pace: When communicating with individuals of varying pace preferences, mirror their tempo to establish rapport and build trust. If someone speaks quickly, match their pace to convey energy and enthusiasm. Conversely, if they speak more slowly, adjust your tempo to convey patience and attentiveness.
  • Aligning Focus: Tailor your message to align with the primary focus of your audience. For task-focused individuals, emphasize tangible outcomes, deadlines, and action steps. For relationship-focused individuals, prioritize building rapport, listening actively, and demonstrating empathy.
  • Flexing Style: Recognize that effective communication requires flexibility and adaptability. Be willing to adjust your approach based on the preferences and needs of your audience. By demonstrating flexibility, you enhance your ability to connect with diverse individuals and foster meaningful relationships.

So, as you consider how to develop a leadership style, I invite you to embrace the richness of your natural behavior by appreciating its unique quirks. Dare to lead with authenticity, passion, and unwavering purpose, for it is in embracing our true selves that we unlock our limitless potential.

Embracing Self-awareness and Strengths

As strong leaders, self-awareness is our guiding light, illuminating the path to personal growth, fulfillment, and unparalleled success. As we chart our course in male-dominated industries, cultivating a deep understanding of our strengths, weaknesses, and innate talents is not just advantageous—it’s crucial.

Self-awareness in Leadership Development

Self-awareness, the cornerstone of effective leadership, begins with a willingness to explore the depths of our being—to peel back the layers of self-doubt, insecurity, and fear, uncovering the hidden gems that lie dormant within us. It’s about embracing our imperfections, celebrating our successes, and embracing the unique tapestry of experiences that have shaped us into the leaders we are destined to become.

Embracing Your Strengths and Weaknesses

But self-awareness is more than just introspection—it’s about harnessing the power of our strengths and leveraging them to propel us forward in our leadership journey. Are you a master communicator, capable of inspiring others with your words and vision? Or perhaps you possess an unparalleled knack for problem-solving, turning obstacles into opportunities with grace and resilience. Whatever your strengths, own them unabashedly, for they are the building blocks of your success—a testament to your unwavering commitment to excellence and innovation.

Here are some practical strategies for embracing self-awareness, identifying strengths, and addressing weaknesses as a leader:

  • Reflection and introspection: Set aside time each day for reflection and introspection. Journaling, meditation, or quiet contemplation can help you gain clarity, insight, and perspective on your thoughts, feelings, and aspirations.
  • Seek feedback: Embrace feedback as a valuable tool for growth and self-discovery. Solicit input from trusted mentors, colleagues, and peers to gain a deeper understanding of your strengths, weaknesses, and areas for improvement.
  • Play to your strengths: Identify your core strengths and find opportunities to leverage them in your leadership role. Delegate tasks that fall outside your area of expertise and focus on activities that align with your unique talents and abilities.
  • Addressing weaknesses: Acknowledge your weaknesses with humility and a growth mindset. Seek out opportunities for learning, skill development, and personal growth to address areas where you may fall short.
  • Continuous learning: Commit to lifelong learning and personal development. Stay curious, explore new ideas, and seek out opportunities to expand your knowledge, skills, and expertise.

As you embark on your journey of self-discovery and personal growth, I encourage you to embrace the power of self-awareness, celebrate your strengths, and courageously address your weaknesses. It is in embracing our true selves and taking proactive steps towards growth and improvement that we unlock the key to unparalleled success, fulfillment, and lasting impact in the world.

Building Networks and Taking Initiative

Forging meaningful connections and seizing opportunities with unwavering determination are the hallmarks of true trailblazers. As women entrepreneurs navigate their journey, building a robust network of supporters, collaborators, and mentors is a powerful catalyst for growth, innovation, and lasting success.

Taking the Initiative

Building networks is more than just exchanging business cards or attending networking events—it’s about fostering authentic relationships built on trust, mutual respect, and a genuine desire to support one another’s success. Whether it’s reaching out to industry leaders for mentorship, collaborating with fellow entrepreneurs on joint ventures, or participating in professional organizations and communities, every interaction is an opportunity to expand your sphere of influence and cultivate meaningful connections that will serve you well on your path to leadership mastery.

Becoming a Proactive Leader

Here are some actionable steps for building networks and taking initiative as a leader:

  • Expand your horizons: Step outside your comfort zone and explore new avenues for networking and collaboration. Attend industry conferences, seminars, and workshops to connect with fellow professionals and thought leaders in your field.
  • Nurture authentic relationships: Focus on building genuine, meaningful connections with others based on trust, integrity, and shared values. Take the time to listen, empathize, and offer support to those in your network, and they will reciprocate in kind.
  • Seek out mentors and advisors: Surround yourself with mentors, advisors, and role models who can offer guidance, wisdom, and support on your leadership journey. Contact industry veterans, thought leaders, and successful entrepreneurs for advice, feedback, and mentorship.
  • Take initiative: Seize opportunities with boldness and confidence. Don’t be afraid to take the lead when the situation calls for it. Volunteer for leadership roles, spearhead new initiatives, and champion causes that align with your values and aspirations.
  • Give back to your community: Pay it forward by giving back to your community and supporting others on their leadership journey. Mentor aspiring entrepreneurs, volunteer for charitable organizations, and use your platform and influence to effect positive change in the world.

As you build networks and take initiative, remember that every connection, every collaboration, and every act of leadership can shape your destiny and leave a lasting impact on the world. So, embrace the power of connection, seize opportunities with unwavering determination, and let your passion, purpose, and vision guide you as you forge your path to leadership mastery.

Cultivating the Right Attitude and Continuous Learning

At the heart of every great leader lies a steadfast commitment to cultivating the right attitude and embracing a lifelong journey of continuous learning. In the fast-paced and ever-evolving world of entrepreneurship, where challenges abound, and uncertainty reigns supreme, having the right mindset and a thirst for knowledge are essential for success.

Your Attitude and Motivation

Your attitude has the ability to make or break you. But cultivating the right attitude is more than just maintaining a positive outlook—it’s about adopting a mindset of resilience, adaptability, and unwavering determination in the face of adversity. It’s about embracing failure as a stepping stone to success, learning from setbacks, and using every challenge as an opportunity for growth and self-improvement.

Suggestions for Maintaining a Positive Attitude

Here are some ways you can cultivate the right attitude and embrace continuous learning as a leader:

  • Maintain a positive outlook: Cultivate a mindset of optimism, resilience, and gratitude, even in the face of adversity. Focus on the opportunities ahead rather than dwelling on past failures or setbacks, and approach each day with a sense of purpose, passion, and enthusiasm.
  • Embrace failure as a learning opportunity: Shift your perspective on failure from a setback to a stepping stone to success. View every challenge, setback, or obstacle as an opportunity for growth, learning, and self-improvement. Use each experience as fuel for your journey toward excellence.
  • Commit to lifelong learning: Embrace a mindset of continuous learning and personal development, and commit to expanding your knowledge, skills, and expertise every day. Stay curious, open-minded, and receptive to new ideas, perspectives, and insights, and seek opportunities for growth and self-improvement in every aspect of your life.
  • Seek feedback and constructive criticism: Welcome feedback and constructive criticism as valuable opportunities for growth and self-awareness. Solicit feedback from colleagues, mentors, and peers, and use their insights to identify areas for improvement, enhance your skills, and refine your leadership style.
  • Remain adaptable and flexible: Embrace change as a natural and inevitable part of the entrepreneurial journey, and remain adaptable, flexible, and resilient in the face of uncertainty. Stay nimble, agile, and responsive to emerging trends, market dynamics, and shifting customer needs. Be willing to pivot, iterate, and evolve your strategies as needed to stay ahead of the curve.

By cultivating the right attitude and embracing continuous learning, you can unlock your full potential as a leader, entrepreneur, and change-maker in today’s dynamic and ever-evolving business world. So, let your attitude be your compass, your mindset be your guiding light, and your commitment to lifelong learning be your pathway to excellence.

Leading with Confidence and Purpose

As you embark on your journey to develop a leadership style that resonates with your unique strengths, values, and vision, leading with confidence and purpose is essential. Leaders with confidence, clarity, and conviction are better equipped to inspire others, drive results, and navigate challenges with grace and resilience.

The Importance of Vision and Purpose

At the core of leading with confidence and purpose lies a deep sense of self-assurance, authenticity, and a clear understanding of your values, goals, and aspirations as a leader. It’s about embodying your unique leadership style, leveraging your strengths, and empowering others to do the same while staying true to your vision and purpose.

Here are some tips for leading with confidence and purpose and empowering your leadership journey:

  • Clarify your vision and purpose: Take the time to define your vision, mission, and values as a leader and articulate them with clarity and conviction. What are you passionate about? What impact do you want to make in the world? By aligning your actions with your purpose and values, you can inspire others to rally behind your vision and work towards a common goal.
  • Develop your leadership style: Explore different styles, techniques, and approaches, and identify what resonates most deeply with your personality, strengths, and preferences. Whether you gravitate towards a visionary, collaborative, or transformative leadership style, embrace your unique leadership strengths and qualities and leverage them to inspire and empower others.
  • Cultivate self-confidence: Cultivate a mindset of self-confidence, self-belief, and resilience, and banish self-doubt and imposter syndrome from your mind. Embrace your strengths, celebrate your achievements, and learn from your failures and setbacks, knowing that each experience brings you one step closer to your goals.
  • Lead by example: Lead with integrity, authenticity, and humility, and set a positive example for others to follow. Demonstrate your commitment to excellence, accountability, and continuous improvement in everything you do, and inspire those around you to strive for greatness in their own endeavors.
  • Empower and uplift others: Recognize the potential and talents of those around you and empower them to unleash their full potential. Encourage collaboration, creativity, and innovation, and create a supportive and inclusive environment where everyone feels valued, respected, and inspired to contribute their best work.

By leading with confidence and purpose, you can inspire others to believe in themselves, unleash their full potential, and work towards a shared vision of success and prosperity. So, discover how to develop a leadership style, embody your values and vision with clarity and conviction, and empower others to join you on your journey toward greatness.

Empower Your Leadership Journey

Your journey as a leader is a continuous evolution of self-discovery, growth, and empowerment. By embracing your unique strengths, values, and vision, you have the power to make a profound impact on your business, your community, and the world.

Remember, leadership is not about titles, positions, or authority—it’s about your positive influence on others, the difference you make in their lives, and the legacy you leave behind. Dare to dream big, believe in yourself, and unleash your full leadership potential. So, embrace the journey, lead purposefully, and dare to make a difference in the world.

If you’re ready to take your leadership journey to the next level, I invite you to check out these programs to help you confidently build your business. Get ready to build a profitable business that gives you the lifestyle you want and deserve!

Kimberley Borgens

About the author

Kimberley Borgens was married at 18, a mother at 19, and divorced at 20, she has journeyed from being a single mom on welfare to recognizing her strengths, fighting for what she believes in, and successfully building 5 thriving businesses with hundreds of employees and million-dollar budgets. Kimberley is a speaker, business mentor, and coaches her clients to transform their small business into a thriving business. Kimberley is living her own legacy as she inspires and motivates women to be fearless, become more like a CEO of their business and life, and enjoy the freedom they've dreamed of. She knows what it's like to start from nothing and build a strong solid business and she can help you too.

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