Pre-leadership: Involving, mentoring, grooming, apprenticing Leadership: Finding the right position – committee chairs, board, offices - moving up the ladder Post-Leadership: Letting go, supporting new leaders, mentoring new members Moving Outside of the Box: Area Vice- Director, Director, District Committees, Governor and beyond.
Commitment to the mission Commitment to members’ needs Keeping all the balls in the air Staying focused Leading Good Meetings Managing Your Own Time
Members have choices of how to use their volunteer time. They join because of the ZI mission; they leave if they feel like were sold a bill of goods. The mission provides cover when the club is approached for off-mission funding or partnerships. Our mission has both international and local implications – both need to addressed because each is important to members to different degrees.
Different members’ have different needs, different histories, and different styles – they all are looking to give and to get from Zonta Unhappy members breed misery. Happy members breed good outcomes.
Leaders need to lead, not take over. Worry when one person takes full responsibility for a multi-faceted task, especially if it is yourself. Follow the Baskin Robbins model: It takes many flavors to satisfy everyone; We don’t all have the same tastes or preferences; If no one wants the job, repackage it to make it palatable or drop it.
Remember the mission – advancing the status of women. This applies to your own members as well as the women we serve. As a leader, you must be focused or no one else will be. Balance the “big picture” with the “close-up” in order to get to the end of the movie.
As President or Chair, you are the crossing guard. You direct traffic and sometimes stop it. Your goal is to get everybody to the other side of the road. Time is valuable and there is a time for ruminations, but it’s not at meetings. The beginning and end time of meetings is a bargain you must keep. Use parliamentary procedure as a tool, not a stick.
Don’t take on more than you can do. Remember your other commitments when making Zonta commitments. Don’t keep others waiting while you make up your mind about taking on a job. You’ll never make everybody happy; but you can make yourself satisfied if you meet your own goals.
Men’s and Women’s brains are built differently and function differently. This affects how they think and how they communicate.
The language area of the female brain is 11-14% denser than the male. When a female thinks, her entire brain lights up. A male brain pinpoints one area. Women tend to use both sides of the brain to solve a problem; men use one side. There is more blood flow between the hemispheres of a female brain and the physical connection is bigger.
What is the main difference between the way men and women talk?
Men’s conversation is linear: women’s is elliptical or spiral. Men use conversation to convince and negotiate, to give advice, directions and information. They speak in short sentences and are direct – “Point, shoot, score”. Women use conversation as a collaborative exchange to build rapport and connection, convey feelings as well as information. They don’t worry much about what other’s will think.
When working on Zonta tasks, try being more direct. Give directions in a concise way. Leaders must try to close the loop and serve as a manager. People need clear and concise directions to do their work.
I’m sorry to ask this, but what’s the problem with “qualifiers”?
Women rely on nuances and body language to communicate and understand. If you start by acting unsure, people will think you are unsure. Qualifiers, like “I think”, “I might be wrong, but..”, play down your status and authority – not good if you expect people to follow your directions.
Leaders must be perceived as strong and self- confident, not self-deprecating. If no one is in charge, everyone feels guilty when something doesn’t work. And it leads to finger pointing and negative comments. Try to concentrate on what a member or leader has accomplished, rather than on how she does it or what her “secret motive” is.
Cooperation rather than competition… No one knows if this is innate or a consequence of experience and education, but every mother finds out that boys are different than girls no matter how they are raised AND no two girls are alike either. Historically, men’s tasks required intense focus (hunting, territory protecting, finding a mate) Women needed to see the big picture to protect, feed and care for her young and keep the home fires burning
The way we were raised, our life and work experiences mean we all have different styles. A good leader doesn’t expect everyone to react or behave the same way and doesn’t value one style over another, but finds a place for each in the overall plan. Zontians, by definition, are strong, successful women, but underneath they are little girls looking for approval. If they don’t get it from Zonta, they’ll find it somewhere else.
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