Companies with on average more female executives better than those with fewer women, but analysts believe that the reason is not just the brilliance of women leaders. On the contrary, companies that are culturally open to having older women are also more willing to accept other innovations, and it is perhaps this innovative spirit that leads to higher profitability. Similarly, countries wishing to elect women prime ministers may be those more likely to listen to epidemiologists.
Yet I think there is also a difference in leadership itself.
“Women often lead in a very different style from men,” said Margot Wallstrom, a former Swedish foreign minister, citing examples from Norway, Germany and New Zealand of women with discrete, inclusive and evidence-based leadership.
Wallstrom also noted that public health is a traditional “field of origin” concern for many women leaders. Grant Miller, an expert in health economics at Stanford University, found that, as the states, one by one, granted women a vote in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, these states then also invested more in sanitation and public health—saving the lives of some 20,000 children a year. Boys were therefore huge beneficiaries of women’s suffrage.
One of the pitfalls for women politicians is that audacity can be effective for male candidates, but researchers find that male and female voters are put off by women who seem self-promotional. This forces women in politics to master the art of communicating effectively in a discreet manner — exactly what is needed in a pandemic.
“Maybe the skills that brought them to the top,” said Rimoin, the U.S. epidemiologist. C.L.A., are the same skills that are currently needed to bring a country together. »
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