What is your daughter’s leadership style?

Leaders come in all shapes and sizes, as well as all different personality types. We tend to think of leaders as outgoing and vocal. Throughout history we have seen leaders who are more vocal and those who are more quiet. One is not better than the other. Since we live in an extroverted American society, it would appear that the extroverts tend to be seen as having more leadership qualities. Yet Bill Gates and Rosa Parks were two well-known introverts – leaders in their own right.

Most parents want their daughters to exhibit leadership qualities (fast talking and quick decision-making are just two examples that come to mind). The girl who has more of an introverted personality type will likely present as shy, reserved or slow to speak. That’s because we introverts like to think before we speak. If a girl who is naturally introverted is forced to fit into an extroverted world, group or behavior then this is likely to cause her some distress. Actually, it can cause her a lot of distress which can lead to anxiety and depression. I always help girls and their parents to understand and embrace their natural personality type (introverted or extroverted). Only then can a girl feel in her place of personal power and begin to embrace her own form of leadership.

Introverts need to carve out time for thinking and recharging their batteries. Extroverts need time to connect socially to energize themselves. Leaders can be loud or they can be quiet natured. We want our daughters to be leaders in their own right, in their own way. Also, being a leader does not mean being the president or head honcho of a business. It means that you stand up for what you believe in, or in Rosa Parks case, sit down for what you believe in. Let’s look at our daughters through a different lens. They will tell us what type of leader they are likely to be.

This was written by the parent of an extroverted future leader as well as an introverted future leader. As for me, I am a bit of a mix but I lean more toward introversion.


Michelle Kelley BA, MSW, LCSW Licensed Counselor, Owner, Girls Stand Strong

Michelle Kelley Licensed Counselor, Owner, Girls Stand Strong

Licensed counselor and founder of Girls Stand Strong Michelle Kelley, LCSW, helps girls and women of all ages develop and improve their self-image, self-esteem, relationship and communication skills, emotional understanding, coping skills, the ability to handle difficult situations and people, and resiliency to create a brighter, better and more successful tomorrow. For more information about Michelle’s coaching and counseling services, call (703) 505-2413 or email michelle@girlsstandstrong.com.

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