6 Things We Can Learn from How Women Leaders Have Handled the Pandemic
by Kara Cutruzzula
Infection and fatality rates in the first three months of the Covid pandemic were generally lower in 194 countries with female leaders. The author has identified four common threads in women’s leadership during the pandemic: trust, decisiveness, tech, love. Love is the unique factor among women leaders.
These are the major takeaways from the actions of women leaders:
1. Include everyone
The most successful leaders included everyone in their plans. Erna Solberg, the Norwegian Prime Minister held coronavirus instructional events for children to help ease their fears, even though they’re not part of the voting population yet.
2. Be authentic
Early on, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern hosted an informal Facebook Live Q&A to “check in with everyone.” while dressed in sweats and addressing the nation from her home, she said, “Excuse the casual attire,” she explained, “It can be a messy business putting toddlers to bed.”
3. Tell the truth
“Truth is enormously important, because truth builds trust.” Chancellor Angela Merkel’s staunch reliance on the facts from epidemiological models and advice from medical providers helped guide the country to a lower death rate than many other industrialized countries. But she never shied away from voicing unsettling truths, either.
4. Be decisive
Decisiveness is especially hard to embody in times of stress and uncertainty. But some women leaders still managed to act. Under the watchful eye of President Tsai Ing-Wen, Taiwan had a government pandemic plan — including contact tracing, quarantining and an abundance of masks — and the infrastructure in place should a pandemic strike again. So far, the country has had one of the lowest coronavirus death counts in the world.
5. Embrace technology
The pandemic has shown us that technology can offer some solutions. Iceland Prime Minister Katrín Jakobsdóttir kicked off an intensive screening and tracking system for the country, which saw early success battling the virus, and she has now instituted double-testing and mandatory quarantine for travelers.
6. Leaders of every kind can learn from these women
You don’t have to lead a country to be inspired by these women. People at organizations of all types and sizes — from companies to schools to community groups — can benefit from incorporating truth, decisiveness, tech and love into their thoughts and actions. Realizing we’re all in this together and behaving in a way that embodies this attitude are key. Knowing and trusting that the person at the top, whoever they may be, is committed to advancing the interests of the whole can raise spirits and keep everyone looking toward the future.
The entire article can be found at: https://ideas.ted.com/6-things-we-can-learn-from-how-women-leaders-have-handled-the-pandemic/