Listen Up, Women Leaders: The Voice in Your Ear Says, “You Can Do This”

Author and Loyola University professor Jill Geisler offers help with leadership skills.

Author and Loyola University professor Jill Geisler offers help with leadership skills.

Here’s the management truth many of us know too well: We’re promoted because of our track record as front line employees. Our job skills are strong, so they put us in charge of the work. That’s when we discover we need a whole different set of skills, because we’re not just managing work, we are leading people, a responsibility that is complicated and challenging, worrisome and wonderful – and rarely easy.We would benefit from professional development, but it’s often in short supply. That’s especially the case in challenging economic times, when management training becomes the first casualty of budget cuts. Can you think of a worse scenario?During change and disruption, when supervisors should be in top form, their learning opportunities are limited. For women leaders, that’s a double whammy. We’re already navigating pay equity issues, disproportionate representation in the executive suite, and biases that run the gamut from unconscious to unhinged. With all that, and without benefit of specialized training, we’re nonetheless expected to lead collaboration, motivation and innovation.If I’ve just depressed you, take heart. You’re probably doing better than you think, despite the obstacles – and I’m happy to feed your need for leadership growth. Best of all, you don’t need a budget for it – just the ability to download a new free (and commercial-free) podcast I’ve developed for Loyola University Chicago. It’s called “Q&A: Leadership and Integrity in the Digital Age.” Each episode tackles one question related to communication, technology, leadership and trust. In five minute lessons, I provide research and experience-based answers to everyday challenges:

  • How do we avoid burnout in a 24/7 culture?

  • How can I improve the diversity of my team?

  • Should I check the social media posts of job candidates?

  • How can I tell if my employees really trust me?

  • How do I deal with top performers who are also bullies?

  • How can I get better at providing feedback?

 The full collection is available on iTunes U. Here’s the link. I continuously add topics and would love to hear your suggestions.Remember: the most important thing leaders do is help others succeed.You can do this!Jill Geisler is the Bill Plante Chair in Leadership & Media Integrity at Loyola University Chicago. She was among the first women in the U.S. to lead a local TV newsroom, holds a masters degree in leadership studies, is the author of Work Happy: What Great Bosses Know and serves as a trainer and coach to managers