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5 Leadership Secrets of Hillary Clinton

In June, Hillary Clinton made history as the first female presidential nominee of a major political party. In doing so, she told supporters: “Tonight’s victory is not about one person. It belongs to generations of women and men who struggled and sacrificed and made this moment possible.”

As important as the historical value of this victory is, the press and other news commentary called out that gender is not Hillary’s primary playing card. What will be more important is how she articulates her strong vision for this country, and how she will differentiate her leadership from other presidents for addressing the complexities and challenges our nation and the world are facing today.

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What Leaders Can Learn from Hillary’s “Best Week Ever”

I wasn’t surprised to see Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign—dubbed “struggling” in September—wrap up the month with what pundits are calling her “Big October” and “best week of the campaign.” After participating in the Democratic debate on Oct. 13, she emerged unscathed a week later despite being grilled for 11 hours by the House’s Select Committee on Benghazi. Now many who wondered whether she could boost her poll numbers and provide more direction to her campaign are heralding the “inevitability” of her position as frontrunner, and maybe as president.

Putting politics to the side, when watching Hillary “do her thing,” it’s natural to feel awe and admiration for the way she commands a room under the highest stakes without breaking a sweat. No matter what level of leadership you’ve reached or to which you aspire, there is plenty to learn from Hillary’s style. Here are a few of her best leadership traits to emulate...

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Another Woman Leader Emerges!

Last week was a big week for Mary Barra, CEO of General Motors. She testified in front of Congress regarding the ignition problem that spurred the eventual recall of millions of GM cars. Watching the media cover her widely anticipated visit to Capitol Hill, I began to realize that while this was a crisis moment for GM, it was also an unparalleled opportunity for Mary Barra to demonstrate her personal brand of leadership.

Leading up to the day of her testimony, I received numerous calls from the media asking how I thought she would and should handle herself and even if I thought she would be treated any differently because she was a woman. My reply is always the same: it’s not really a gender issue but rather it’s about taking personal responsibility and doing the right thing.

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If Hillary Asked You…

If Hillary Clinton asked you if she should run for President in 2016, what would you say? This may seem like a straightforward question based on her many years of experience in public service and the variety of roles she has played. In fact, her vast experience has set her up to be a strong Presidential candidate. But it has also opened up other choices for her that could be just as personally fulfilling. I think the magic here is that whether or not Hillary decides to run, she has created a situation in her career where she is in a position of strength and she also has a choice. And that’s a winning formula for all of us!

Let me explain. In SHAMBAUGH’s coaching practice, we see a number of talented women who have worked hard for years and have a lot of good experience under their belt, which makes them excellent candidates for partnership roles or positions in the C-Suite. Yet these same women often have an internal narrative that defeats their ability to reach their full potential. These internal dialogues sound like, “I’m not sure that I’m qualified” or “If I take this position, I will lose my family life” or “I won’t fit in with the male-dominated leadership team” or “It would be awkward having my current peers working for me” and so on. This kind of dilemma can – be not only frustrating for women but can impact their confidence and professional growth. It can also lead to a potential loss for the leadership of the organization.

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