12 Women CEOs 12 Different Leadership Styles

The idea of mak­ing a series on 12 Women Lead­ers came from my expe­ri­ence of coach­ing hun­dreds of exec­u­tive women and men, pro­vid­ing in depth con­struc­tive and per­sonal feed­back with a model called the SPM.

The cor­po­rate world would be such a bet­ter place if more lead­ers were to invent a new kind of lead­er­ship, an “inno­v­a­tive lead­er­ship”, an open lead­er­ship, open­ing new pos­si­bil­i­ties, solu­tions and collaborations.

We need more role mod­els, espe­cially for girls and women, to show us the way and inspire us to action.

That’s the rea­son why I’m writ­ing this series, and col­lect­ing sto­ries of remar­quable women lead­ers, from dif­fer­ent cul­tures, with dif­fer­ent per­sonal styles and val­ues. We can’t iden­tify any­more with the stereo­typed rep­re­sen­ta­tion of the “LEADER” ( a WASP Superhero).

We aspire for dif­fer­ent mod­els, reflect­ing the diver­sity of the world, in cul­tures, in gen­ders, in classes, in gen­er­a­tions, in skin col­ors, and …in souls. NOW.

Now is also the name of the lead­er­ship model we have been co-developing with Doc­tor Anne Per­schel. Our “brain­child”, grow­ing up amaz­ingly quickly, under the pres­sures of accel­er­ated glob­al­iza­tion, female brain-drain, col­lapse of tra­di­tional lead­er­ship mod­els. We are cur­rently design­ing a brand new range of lead­er­ship pro­grams, not only for women, for the future gen­der bal­anced work­place.

You can now read all 12 styles of lead­er­ship, illus­trated by 12 women leaders:

1. Ursula Burns, the Achiever


2. Meg Whit­man, the Per­suader


3. Yoshiho Shi­no­hara , the Pio­neer (with also Halla Tomas­dot­tir and Gail Evans)


4. Char­lene Li, the Inno­va­tor (along with Coco Chanel…)


5. Oprah Win­frey and Ari­anna Huff­in­g­ton, for the Net­worker


6. Andrea Jung, the Human­ist


7. Indra Nooyi, with Kah Wallathe Facil­i­ta­tor


8. Ana Patri­cia Botin, the Mod­er­a­tor


9. Hyun Jeongeun, the Main­tainer


10. Nahed Taher, the Analyser


11. Dong Minzhu, the Mon­i­tor


12. Anne Lau­ver­geon, the Dri­ver


The Spony Pro­fil­ing Model (SPM), is the fruit of 8 years of research by Dr. Gilles
at Cran­field School of Man­age­ment. The illus­tra­tions pro­vided here come from my own inter­pre­ta­tion of the model, with the per­mis­sion of Gilles Spony.

I wish the suc­cess­ful women lead­ers fea­tured in my research had taken the pro­file! They have not. Not yet…However, they com­mu­ni­cate, via the pub­lic media, cer­tain major aspects of each of the twelve dimen­sions.

My point is to offer a wide range of styles, with some clearly vis­i­ble illus­tra­tions, that women can eas­ily iden­tify from. I intend to do the same for men.

You can read a detailed descrip­tion of the model, its the­o­ries and appli­ca­tions in The SPM, Inno­v­a­tive, Cross-Cultural and 21st Cen­tury Ready

My research is based on The Finan­cial Times list of Top 50 Women in World Busi­ness, which offers an inter­na­tional scope, tak­ing into account North Amer­ica, of course, but also Asia, Aus­tralia, Mid­dle East and Europe. Research still in progress…

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