Skip to main content

6 Management Lessons From Visionary Leaders

| February 11, 2014

by Jim Bruce

Today’s Tuesday Reading, “6 Management Lessons from Visionary Women Leaders,” is from the pen of Lydia Dishman, a business journalist covering innovation, entrepreneurship and style, and appeared recently in FastCompany.

Dishman notes that it has been a big year for women in leadership.  In her piece, she focuses on women who have recently become or are leaders in their respective companies and provides some insight into how they lead through a series of quotations:

Mary Barra, recently named CEO of General Motors – “If you don’t address problems head on, they don’t go away –– they get bigger.  Get the right people together, address the challenges, and keep moving forward.” 

Angela Ahrendts, formerly CEO of Burberry and soon to become Apple’s Senior Vice President for Retail and Online Stores – when asked how do you create energy and excitement in the activities you are responsible for:  “90% of it is trust … we wanted to … build an amazing brand experience and an amazing way that people can engage with the brand.  Then it [energy and excitement] will naturally happen.”

Marissa Mayer, President and CEO of Yahoo – “Hire the right people, use them to build products consumers love, use those products to build traffic.”

Anne Wojcicki, co-founder of 23andme – in speaking about the company’s mission, you create a revolution by going directly to the consumer, learning to cooperate with those who attempt to interfere.  (The interview with Wojcicki occurred shortly after the FDA ordered the company to stop marketing its DNA test kits.)

Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook and author of Lean In – “keep it real with the boss.”  She meets with her boss, Mark Zuckerberg every Friday to give each other feedback.

Jenna Lyons, Creative Director and President of J Crew – “I’m like a glorified crossing guard.  It’s like, try to keep people motivated keep the traffic moving, keep people from getting stumped or stopped by a problem.”

And, as you would expect, the advice works for both women and men.  Perhaps you want to take some reflection time and ask yourself how you address problems, whether you are trusted by your staff, are you hiring the right people, are you cooperating with those about you, your relationship with your boss, and how you keep your group’s work flowing.  If you are like me, you’ll find some things that you need to work on.

.  .  .  .    jim