White Paper - Women, Naturally Better Leaders for the 21st Century

The second White Paper in a new series on Transpersonal Leadership, looks at the reasons why we have a confluence of women playing a greater role on the world stage in the workplace and the reasons behind some of the cultural barriers that hitherto have kept them from achieving parity at the most senior levels.

Download this essential White Paper to learn more about what female leaders can bring to organisations, and how the areas they're stronger at are essential for success in the 21st century. It also presents some practical input on how to develop organisations that recognize those strengths and to help women develop in areas where they might appear weaker than their male counterparts. 

Get Your White Paper

Read the author's response to the debate this paper has stirred.

From the introduction

History is awash with examples of famous leaders that when asked one can bring to mind. Ask the question specifically whether one can name a notable woman leader and the task still gets more challenging. The responses might include female monarchs Cleopatra, Elizabeth 1, Victoria, or politicians Golda Meir, Margaret Thatcher or Aung San Suu Kyi. Take it a step further and ask the question relating to notable woman business leaders and I am guessing that you will really struggle.

But is it just a coincidence or a real sign of the future that as this paper is published we are probably on the verge of women leading the three most powerful nations in the Western world? Angela “Mutti” Merkel, the leader of Europe, has been the German Chancellor since 2005. A pragmatic leader with a relatively low ego and a strong sense of duty has now been joined by the newly appointed British Prime Minister, Theresa May who had been the UK Home Secretary for 6 years and is known for just getting on with the job and avoiding celebrity, but also having that sense of duty. And in November, the polls suggest the first female president of the USA will be elected. It is said Hillary Clinton would become the most experienced President in history when elected in terms of prior government office. What a trio – and can they change the world for the better?

About the author

Greg Young, CEO of LeaderShape Global, has been a thought leader in the field of leadership development for over 10 years following a senior career in the Lifesciences and Telecommunications Sectors - see www.leadershapeglobal.com/greg-young. He is a contributor to “The Invisible Elephant & the Pyramid Treasure: Tomorrow’s Leadership – the Transpersonal Journey” (2011) and “Leadership Assessment for Talent Development” (2013). Greg diversity has a passion for diversity in leadership and most recently was on the Judging panel of Women in Construction and Engineering Awards (WICE) 2016.

Related Titles

  • The Global Hillary

    Women's Political Leadership in Cultural Contexts, 1st Edition

    Edited by Dinesh Sharma

    Is there a linkage between "smart power" and Hillary Clinton's leadership style? Can she advance American leadership and women's development worldwide? The Global Hillary addresses these questions and many others. Bringing together two key aspects of Clinton’s ongoing career—her advocacy for…

    Paperback – 2016-05-24
    Leadership: Research and Practice

  • Psychology and Work

    Perspectives on Industrial and Organizational Psychology, 1st Edition

    By Donald M. Truxillo, Talya N. Bauer, Berrin Erdogan

    Psychology and Work is a new textbook for introductory Industrial and Organizational (I/O) Psychology classes. Written by award-winning I/O professors with expertise in I/O Psychology and teaching this course, the book is organized into three main sections. It first includes an overview of the…

    Paperback – 2015-11-23

  • Gender and Social Hierarchies

    Perspectives from social psychology, 1st Edition

    Edited by Klea Faniko, Fabio Lorenzi-Cioldi, Oriane Sarrasin, Eric Mayor

    Gender and Social Hierarchies offers a fresh and coherent picture of applied research from within social psychology on the intricate relationship between gender and social status. It comprises a collection of innovative approaches which seek to understand the pervasiveness of status asymmetry…

    Paperback – 2015-11-02

  • Applied Leadership Development

    Nine Elements of Leadership Mastery, 1st Edition

    By Al Bolea, Al Bolea, Leanne Atwater

    Intended for courses on leadership, practicing managers, consultants, and practitioners, this approachable guide teaches readers about how to become a leader. By blending the real-world insights of business executive Al Bolea with tested research findings provided by leadership scholar Leanne…

    Paperback – 2015-08-27
    Leadership: Research and Practice

  • Leadership Coaching

    Developing braver leaders, 1st Edition

    By Mike McLaughlin, Elaine Cox

    Leadership Coaching offers a new model of coaching for leadership development. It explains how the brave model extends existing leadership theories, and includes specific coaching processes and sense-making techniques to allow the reader to understand how the model would work in practice. The book…

    Paperback – 2015-08-10

  • The Future of Leadership

    Leveraging Influence in an Age of Hyper-Change, 1st Edition

    By Michael A Genovese

    The Future of Leadership considers how the rapid changes of today will affect the leaders of tomorrow. Renowned Leadership scholar Michael A. Genovese argues that one of the key challenges for future leaders will be to effectively and constructively manage the ‘hyper-change’ taking place both…

    Paperback – 2015-07-27
    Leadership: Research and Practice

  • The Psychology of Planning in Organizations

    Research and Applications, 1st Edition

    Edited by Michael D. Mumford, Michael Frese

    This book examines planning as the critical influence on performance at work and in organizations.   Bridging theory and practice, it unites cutting-edge research findings from cognitive science, social psychology, industrial and organizational psychology, strategic management, and…

    Paperback – 2015-06-17
    Organization and Management Series

  • Leadership in Sport

    1st Edition

    Edited by Ian O'Boyle, Duncan Murray, Paul Cummins

    Effective leadership is essential in any sports organisation, both in the boardroom and on the training pitch. Leadership in Sport is the first textbook to examine sports leadership in the round, across both management and coaching environments. It includes a dedicated section to underpinning core…

    Paperback – 2015-06-17
    Foundations of Sport Management

  • Gender, Power and Organization

    A psychological perspective on life at work, 2nd Edition

    By Paula Nicolson

    Work organizations are a major site of gender politics for professional women and men, and although there are more women in senior positions than ever before, these increased opportunities have not been gained without psychological consequences. Evidence-based and theoretically driven, the new…

    Paperback – 2015-06-12

  • Dilemmas of Leadership

    3rd Edition

    By Tudor Rickards

    Leadership, the practice of focusing and motivating a group or organization to achieve its aims, is a much discussed but often misunderstood concept. This comprehensive textbook introduces the subject for Masters level students. Readers are invited to make a series of metaphorical journeys of…

    Paperback – 2015-06-10

  • The Psychological Development of Girls and Women

    Rethinking change in time, 2nd Edition

    By Sheila Greene

    Choice Recommended Read This thoroughly revised new edition updates Sheila Greene's original transformative account of the psychological development of girls and women and the central role of time in shaping human experience. Greene critically reviews traditional and contemporary theoretical…

    Paperback – 2014-12-01
    Women and Psychology

  • Interactional Leadership and How to Coach It

    The art of the choice-focused leader, 1st Edition

    By Michael Harvey

    All leaders make choices, but not all leaders are choice-focused. In Interactional Leadership and How to Coach It: The art of the choice-focused leader Michael Harvey presents an important new theory of leadership which demonstrates how to coach successful choice-making. This clear, wide-ranging…

    Paperback – 2014-11-25

  • Building Tomorrow's Leaders Today

    On Becoming a Polymath Leader, 1st Edition

    By Michael A. Genovese

    This book focuses on leadership -- what it is, how it works, and how complex, multi-layered and multi-dimensional it is -- and how it will change in the years ahead. If we are to build tomorrow’s leaders today, we need to anticipate what skills, temperaments, and specific competencies will be…

    Paperback – 2013-12-11
    Leadership: Research and Practice

  • Women, Work, and Globalization

    Challenges and Opportunities, 1st Edition

    By Bahira Sherif Trask

    Women increasingly make up a significant percentage of the labor force throughout the world. This transformation is impacting everyone's lives. This book examines the resulting gender role, work, and family issues from a comparative worldwide perspective. Working allows women to earn an income,…

    Paperback – 2013-10-16

  • Leading with Humility

    1st Edition

    By Rob Nielsen, Jennifer A. Marrone, Holly S. Ferraro

    The media is saturated with images of leaders as powerful, headstrong individuals, who are certain of their position and willing to do whatever it takes to achieve their organizational goals or personal ambitions. In reality, far too often, a leader’s ego gets in the way of sound decision making,…

    Paperback – 2013-09-20

  • Women as Political Leaders

    Studies in Gender and Governing, 1st Edition

    Edited by Michael A. Genovese, Janie S. Steckenrider

    Over the past several years, the fields of Leadership Studies and of Women's Studies have grown tremendously.  This book, which is a series of case studies of women who have headed governments across the globe, will discuss the conditions and situations under which women rose to power and give…

    Paperback – 2013-03-12
    Leadership: Research and Practice

  • Becoming a Trustworthy Leader

    Psychology and Practice, 1st Edition

    By Aneil K. Mishra, Karen E. Mishra

    It's time to discover a new way for individuals to lead organizations and societies. Trust in a variety of institutions, including governmental and business, is at an all-time low. In order to strengthen society from its foundations, we need to rebuild trust.  Research shows that…

    Paperback – 2012-12-17
    Leadership: Research and Practice

Transpersonal Leadership Resources

Interested in becoming a transpersonal leader by leading beyond the ego to be radical, ethical and authentic? Access our series of white papers and snapshot guides, which have been developed in partnership with LeaderShape Global.

Become a Transpersonal Leader

Leadership Bookshop

Whether you're looking for a book for your own personal development or to support the development of staff and colleagues visit our bookshop.

Bulk Discount for Organisations

Buy Routledge books in bulk for your business and save. Get in touch to find out more about our corporate discounts and services. 

​The message about women leaders is causing a stir!

Author of our White Paper - Greg Young responds to the debate it's stirred Read More.

This is not a paper that advocates a move away from meritocracy, but it does suggest that we need to review what ‘the best man for the job’ might look like. That review needs to be started by today’s current, mostly male leaders who need to be transpersonal in setting their own egos aside for the benefit of their organisation’s purpose. 

Leadership Articles

Access expert articles to help you transform your leadership style and get the best out of the people you work with.

Browse Now

Get in touch with Routledge

Follow us on Twitter

Find us on Facebook