10 Feminine Traits That Will Help You Get Ahead

by Debra Bednar-Clark

It’s time to dispel the myth that femininity is a weakness in business.

In fact, the the opposite is true: It’s the soft skills traditionally associated with femininity that will help men and women get ahead and make a bigger impact, no matter where your role sits in an organization.

This isn’t about female or male; it’s about feminine and masculine. Every one of us has a combination of feminine and masculine qualities.

Instead of suppressing these traditionally feminine traits, it’s time to explore why these traits are your leadership superpowers.

Here are 10 “traditionally-feminine traits” that I’ve employed in my years leading high-performing teams, creating happy work cultures — and now coaching my clients to become highly-effective leaders.


Embracing intuition allows you to welcome solutions that come to you naturally. Usually the simplest ones are the best ones (as I’m sure you know!).


People want to be around people who care. Period. Seek to understand how someone feels, what makes them tick, the struggles they’ve endured — and you will create compassionate solutions.


The more sensitive you are to how others feel, the more trust you will build. The more trust you build, the stronger the connections you have. The stronger connections you have, the more you can accomplish.


No matter what form your charm takes —humor, wit, creativity or insight — it leads to influence, and that will help you rally your team and stakeholders (even the most resistant ones).


Greatness doesn’t happen in silos. If you can identify the right people to connect with and establish genuine relationships with, you’ll have a better chance of creating great work.


Perfection is not real, nor attainable. Owning your vulnerability — showing that you’re human and resilient by discussing your feelings, admitting mistakes, asking for help and articulating areas in which you need to grow — is the deepest way to connect with others.


Great work takes nurturing — of yourself, your colleagues and your team. No matter where your position falls in the organization, when you nurture others, you contribute to a culture that values the well-being of its people.


Your style is your opportunity to influence how you’re perceived. It lets people know who you are, what you stand for and even gives a sense of your personality and interests.


Being self-aware means being in tune with the essence of who you are and operating with purpose and intention, which will always lead to making a bigger impact.


People want to work with those who are kind — with work, ideas and time. And kindness begets kindness, the kinder you are to others, the kinder they’ll be to you in return.

The more you learn to own your innate feminine qualities, the stronger you’ll become as a leader. Plus, the more we all do this, men and women, the more we can shift company culture and create a new paradigm for leadership.

Ladies, let’s do this!

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