It’s Time to Change What It Means to be A “Good” Leader

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Inclusive leadership is a business imperative. Organizations benefit from a better together management approach, one where diverse voices, perspectives, and experiences inform decision making at every level. Women have the skills to foster a new wave of inclusive leadership, and they’re rewriting the rules around what it means to be a “good” leader.  
In partnership with Deloitte, The Female Quotient hosted the The Equality Lounge at AWS re:Invent 2018 in Las Vegas. We sat down with leaders from Deloitte and Amazon to learn more about inclusive leadership — why it matters and how to achieve it.
Here are some key takeaways from our conversation:

Women shouldn’t limit themselves by non-existent boundaries.

“My mom always made sure I had a big horizon, so I could think differently about what was possible for me. She encouraged me to never put any boundaries on what I wanted to do. And I’ve brought this advice into my career. About 90 percent of my jobs have been jobs I’ve created, jobs that didn’t exist before.”
– Lita Sands, Head Global Life Sciences, Amazon
“Show up and be your authentic self. No one wants you to be a copy of someone else.”
– Michelle McGuire Christian, Managing Director, Deloitte Digital

Authenticity matters.

“You have to stand up for yourself. Because if you don’t, nobody else will. Authenticity means that you have confidence.”
– Lita Sands, Head Global Life Sciences, Amazon

Women deserve a seat at the table — and they should own it.

I’m no shrinking violet. I use my presence and my femininity to stand out; it differentiates me. And as we rise through the ranks and find ourselves in offices with female CIOs, we create our tribe. The more we participate, the more we are seen as equals.”
–Michelle McGuire Christian, Managing Director, Deloitte Digital
“Know how good you are — and then double it. And if you ever forget that or doubt that, phone a friend to remind you that you are twice as good as you think you are. And you should be fearless about that.”
– Janet Foutty, Chairman and CEO, Deloitte Consulting

Great leaders empower their teams to lead fearlessly.

“The great leaders that we have are great communicators. The leadership of today need to realize that they’re part of a team — and that, as leaders, they need to occasionally rise to the occasion to communicate for that team.”
– Lita Sands, Head Global Life Sciences, Amazon
“All I do is try to create an environment that enables people to be great leaders. Our role as leaders is to make people as wildly successful as possible in how they lead.”
– Janet Foutty, Chairman and CEO, Deloitte Consulting
Women have the opportunity to set a new standard for inclusive leadership. And when we rewrite the rules, everyone has a seat at the table.

Janet Foutty, Lita Sands, and Michelle McGuire Christian speaking in The Equality Lounge @ AWS re:Invent 2018