In every issue of SHE Magazine, we pose “THE BIG QUESTION.” In our next issue, our question is: “What’s your own best leadership quality?”

Here are the thought-provoking answers from five members of our Task Force on Trafficking of Women and Girls in Canada:

Elder Mae Louise Campbell, Grandmother Moon Lodge, Winnipeg, MB

Our first priority as leaders is to honour our Earth Mother for all we are, for it is She who allows us the gift of life and our very breath as human beings to exist in this world. Unfortunately, people today are very separated from the true nature of being Sacred Beings. As an Ojibway/ Saulteaux Elder, I believe it will be through the Spirit of Woman that we will return to a world of compassion and equality.

Isabelle Bigué, Counsellor, Crime Victims Assistance Centre of Montreal, Montreal, QC

As a victim’s counsellor, my greatest leadership quality is my ability to be totally focused toward the needs of the victim, and driven by their need to restore their own self-power in their life. I am convinced that showing great empathy is essential to the achievement of my work. I also rally partners to the cause and make use of my leadership to ensure victims’ needs are at the heart of our actions.

Pytor Hodgson, CEO, Three Things Consulting, Kingston, ON

To be a strong leader, I have to be a strong follower. Though often found at the front of a room, I am equally comfortable and better able to creatively share, inspire and motivate when I get out of the way when it matters. Being the first follower behind someone else’s great idea allows me to be honest that others are better equipped to lead than I. Not simply delegation but removing myself and the space I can take, freeing it for others. That, to me, is leadership.

Nicole Barrett, Director, Global Justice Associates, Vancouver, BC

My best leadership quality is my ability to connect with people from all walks of life. Having lived and worked in many different contexts, countries and cultures, I have learned to communicate in a way that is respectful and meaningful to the individual person. This helps the people I work with to genuinely feel part of a team and to ex­perience work less as work and more as a fun, collective endeavor.

Dr. Marie Delorme, CEO, The Imagination Group of Companies, Calgary, AB

Early in my career, a retiring senior woman gave me this advice: “Perform exceptionally well but at the end of the day, which comes for all of us, no one will remember you for the great report, the speech, or the awards … they will, however, always remember how you made them feel in your presence.” Almost 25 years later I take the greatest pride in the friendships that have endured and transcended work relationships. Every school and workplace should teach people to treat one another with respect and dignity regardless of their socio-economic situation.

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WANT MORE? Watch more answers to THE BIG QUESTION!