In my second post on the Roles Women Play, I want to talk about the role of a career woman. I have shared my thoughts about women at work during the A2Z blogging challenge of professional life. In my corporate career I have come across many women; several of them I like, few I admire, and a handful that I would like to emulate. Julie Woods-Moss is one of the latter. Julie is my boss’s boss’s boss. She is also the CMO of my company and when not travelling, based out of UK. So the opportunities of one-one transactions with her have hardly risen in the last three odd months that I have been a part of her team. I however have been observing her from much before and here are somethings I have learnt from listening to her talks and stalking her on social media.
Leadership Lessons I Learnt from Julie Woods-Moss
A good leader includes
The very first all hands call with her team that I attended happened close on the heels of board meeting. Julie actually shared with her entire team things that the board applauded the company for and things they would like us to do better. She urged us to think about these anytime we made a decision, no matter how operational and assess potential impact. The impression of hearing that from her was so strong that I have subconsciously started thinking of those things. She included every one and not just her immediate reporting team and made it a collective responsibility. Another thing that an act like this does, is drive a culture of open inclusive communication across the team.
A good leader is a fierce supporter of their team
Even the handful of times I have heard her in the last three months, I have lost count of how often she said that she has a stellar team. She frequently calls out the good work people are doing and constantly reminds us that no good idea will go unfunded. Can you believe what a declaration like that does to the morale of the team? Is it any wonder then that the team bonds the way it does? It is one of the rare large teams where undercurrents, if they do exist don’t surface immediately and everyone makes a genuine effort to be caring and welcoming. New comers are immediately put at ease. People have great working relationships and synergy shows. A line that she recently said has stuck with me and that for me defines the way she has built her team.
It is easy to critique but real hard to create – Julie Woods-Moss
A good leader pushes their team to network
If you follow her on social media, you probably know that she keenly follows tech startups and is mentor to several of them. She does speaking engagements whenever possible and is extremely active on twitter. She leads by example and inspires everyone to do the same.
A good leader shares their personal stories too
I have no doubt that she can go on speaking for hours on end while holding the audience’s attention. The remarkable thing is the amount of personal anecdotes she peppers her speech with. She regularly talks about her sons and her husband and at an occasion, even her mother. She uses her own example to illustrate the good and the bad. It is so much easier to connect with a leader like that and give your loyalty to them. She is constantly talking about her own fitness goals and efforts and in turn encourages all of us to look after our health.
A good leader is always well groomed
Well, I would be failing in my duty as a lifestyle blogger if I did not observe and mention this aspect. A leader is under spotlights very often. While their thoughts and ideas take centerstage, their sartorial choices can aid the message powerfully. In fact, one of the very first things I had noticed about Julie was her outfits. She defies the rules of formal corporate power dressing (grey, black and navy syndrome) with an absolute flare. From reds to yellows to lime green, from floral prints to duochrome jackets to pattern mixing – she has done it all. What I love about Julie’s outfits is that there isn’t a typical silhouette or style that she sticks to. There is plenty of variation and yet each outfit is extremely put together.
I hope you are enjoying reading the Women’s Day posts. In case you have missed the last one, read it here: