I think that one of the best ways to learn leadership isn’t studying “leadership” at all. Instead, study individual leaders in their natural habitat and decide what they do that you want to try. Articles by and about leaders and interviews with them are mini-case studies that show you an actual leader in a real situation.
That’s why, every week, I bring you a selection of post about individual leaders. This week I’m pointing you to pieces by and about Victor Ho, Rachael Ray, Kirstin Harper-Smith, Sue Siegel, and Melinda Gates.
“A self-described troublemaker and boundary pusher recommends creating a culture in which junior employees have a duty to disagree with the executives.”
“Rachael Ray is an entrepreneur of all trades. In addition to the Rachael Ray Show and her eponymous magazine, the TV chef in May released her own home furniture line, and has turned up the volume on Rachael’s Rescue which through her pet food line, Nutrish, has raised $16 million for animals in need. Those are just a couple of her business and charitable ventures, and at an Advertising Week event today, Ray explained some of her secrets, to work, home, and life, in general.”
“Kirstin Harper-Smith, 32, is senior project manager at Boston-based Suffolk Construction, where she is supervising the building of a 525-unit apartment tower on Hope Street in downtown Los Angeles.”
“But at 56 and as the CEO of GE Ventures, Siegel feels it’s time to share her experiences and shed light on the challenges women face as they move through their careers. It’s a shared responsibility of the high-ranking women of her generation who have less to lose from speaking out.”
“It’s personal. Gates got her start in tech. After graduating from Duke with a computer science degree (and an MBA), she spent a decade working at Microsoft. That was back in 1987, when just over a third of undergraduate computer science degrees went to women. Nearly 30 years later, fewer than one in five CS degrees are earned by women. That, according to Gates, constitutes a crisis. ‘This has got to change,’ she told me when we met to discuss her efforts last week.”