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Decreasing Competition

How Recruiting More Female Leaders Actually Leads to Less Competition

Over the decades, women have gotten a bad reputation for being competitive. Think of the comedies you’ve seen involving women who work together: they may have cat fights; a queen bee might rise up, who monopolizes leadership and doesn’t help anyone else; rarely do we see portrayals of female leaders working together in harmony.

This really isn’t representative of the real world — especially in today’s age. In reality, these stereotypes and challenges aren’t based on leaders being women. Instead, they’re based on being a minority. Think about it: when resources and opportunities are scarce, there will naturally be competition. That’s true for men, women, young, and old.

Women who are one of the only female leaders in their organization know that they have to grasp opportunities while they have the chance. They may not often get the chance to lead, to be promoted, or...

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Communication Cues: Men vs. Women

You’re probably aware that men and women communicate differently; this is a well-known truth. Often, however, we don’t take time to consider exactly how men and women communicate differently. When we look at communication styles on a specific level, we find that the cues each gender uses differ significantly.

What does this look like in a workplace setting? Let’s take a standard meeting as an example. If a man is in front of his colleagues, communicating, he likely has men and women listening. Each audience member will be different; but on the whole, male and female listeners will contribute to the conversation in gender-specific ways.

A woman listening in will communicate her attention by nodding, and saying things like, “Yes, I understand.” She may even interrupt and say, “That’s exactly what I was thinking!” She’s going to give lots of positive affirmation. She wants the speaker to know that, even if she doesn’t agree...

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Bias Impacts Both Male and Female Church Leaders

In today’s society, it’s easy to pinpoint others’ biases: we easily spot them in the opposing political party, the opposite gender, other groups who don’t see eye to eye with us. A bias is a prejudice in favor of a certain person, group, or thing. The term denotes an unfair preference, or one that has little to no logical foundation.

Biases affect both male and female leaders. Why? Because, whether we’d like to admit it or not, we all have them. We all struggle with them. Our upbringing, culture, friend groups, workplaces, faith, and other factors combine to inform who we are. The first step to overcoming our individual biases is to acknowledge that they exist.

As I’ve worked with church leaders nationwide, I’ve found the same propensity in those circles: it’s easy for church leaders to pinpoint the biases of those who hold different theological beliefs. For instance, two churches who fall on opposite sides of the theological spectrum...

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Be Patient and Intentional in Change

Why Intentionality in Making Changes is Critical for Leaders

Church leaders have the unique task of initiating change in their congregations and ministry teams. This isn’t an easy or simple role, especially when challenges and disagreements are a regular part of the change process. Whenever you are leading change of any kind, it’s vital that you be both patient and intentional.

Any change will include important stakeholders and influencers — these are the people whose say, and resources, are essential to the change. As a leader, it’s wise to give these stakeholders them an opportunity to hear what’s going on in your heart, and to ask questions about it. It’s easy to move forward and tell others what you’re going to do; but true leadership is leading others along the path with you.

Let’s take the issue of women in leadership in church as an example. It would be easy to assume that all women would easily welcome having more female...

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