women empowerment


In the evolving landscape of leadership, women are increasingly taking on influential roles, breaking the glass ceiling, and inspiring others along the way. While progress has been made, there’s still work to be done to ensure that women have equal opportunities to lead. A crucial part of this journey involves honing leadership skills. This article explores the essential leadership skills for women and how they can pave the way to success.

What is Leadership Skills

Leadership skills refer to the abilities and qualities that individuals possess to effectively guide, motivate, and influence others to achieve common goals and objectives. These skills encompass a broad range of attributes, including communication, problem-solving, decision-making, empathy, adaptability, and the capacity to inspire and empower team members.

Leadership skills are not limited to those in formal leadership positions; they can be developed and utilized by anyone interested in making a positive impact on a group, organization, or community. Effective leadership skills for women are essential for driving progress, fostering teamwork, and achieving success in various aspects of life, including business, education, politics, and social causes.

Leadership Skills For Women

Leadership skills for women encompass a set of qualities, abilities, and behaviors that enable women to excel in leadership roles. These skills include effective communication, emotional intelligence, resilience, adaptability, and the ability to inspire and motivate others. Leadership skills for women also involve navigating gender biases and stereotypes while asserting authority and influence in various professional settings. These skills are essential for women to thrive and positively impact as leaders in diverse fields and industries.

  • Communication Skills

Effective communication is at the core of successful leadership. It involves conveying ideas, building relationships, and inspiring action. Women can enhance their communication skills by honing public speaking abilities and assertiveness.

Public speaking, often regarded as a daunting task, is a skill that can be developed. Joining public speaking clubs, seeking mentorship, and practicing regularly can boost confidence and eloquence. Assertiveness is also vital, as it ensures that one’s voice is heard in meetings and discussions.

Women leaders like Oprah Winfrey and Malala Yousafzai have mastered the art of communication, using their words to inspire millions and drive positive change.

  • Empowering Others

Empowering others is another leadership skill for Women that deals with equipping and enabling individuals to take ownership of their actions, decisions, and personal growth. It involves providing them with the tools, knowledge, and opportunities needed to make meaningful contributions and take on increased responsibilities.

Empowering others also entails fostering a supportive and inclusive environment where people feel confident, motivated, and encouraged to reach their full potential. This not only benefits individuals but also enhances team dynamics and overall organizational success.

  • Self-Confidence

Confidence is one of the key leadership for women. Becoming a female leader necessitates having the confidence to surmount obstacles and setbacks. 

Rather than succumbing to circumstances or relying on others to identify and eliminate barriers, self-assured women proactively take the lead, motivating and empowering those around them to do likewise.

Therefore, female leaders should believe in their abilities, knowledge, and expertise. This self-confidence not only helps in decision-making but also inspires others to follow. Practice self-affirmation, and remember that your voice and perspective are valuable.

  • Emotional Intelligence

Emotional intelligence, or EQ, plays a pivotal role in leadership. It encompasses self-awareness, empathy, and the ability to manage emotions. Understanding the emotions and motivations of yourself and others allows for better collaboration, conflict resolution, and team building. 

Women possessing emotional intelligence exhibit a sense of inner tranquility that allows them to lead without succumbing to ego-driven impulses. They adeptly navigate their emotions, ensuring they don’t interfere with their capacity to make sound decisions and maintaining assertiveness rather than reactivity.

Resilient women in leadership positions possess a deep sense of empathy towards those under their guidance, placing others’ needs on par with their own. Their focus extends beyond personal advancement, demonstrating an ability to gracefully disregard unsound advice without causing offense to the advisers.

Cultivate your emotional intelligence by actively practicing empathy and active listening.

  • Decision-Making and Problem-Solving

Leaders are faced with countless decisions and challenges. Effective decision-making and problem-solving are crucial skills for navigating the complex terrain of leadership.

Women may encounter unique challenges in decision-making roles, such as being second-guessed or facing biases. To excel in this area, it’s essential to have a systematic approach to decision-making, considering facts, risks, and long-term consequences.

  • Resilience and Adaptability

Leadership is not without its trials. Resilience—the ability to bounce back from setbacks—and adaptability—the capacity to thrive in changing environments—are vital attributes.

Resilience is cultivated through facing adversity with a positive mindset, seeking solutions, and learning from failures. Adaptability involves staying open to change, embracing innovation, and adjusting to new circumstances.

  • Leading by Example

Leading by example is a fundamental aspect of leadership where leaders inspire and guide their teams through their own actions and behaviors. It means living out the values, ethics, and principles you expect from your team. When leaders walk the talk, they not only gain trust and respect but also motivate others to follow suit.

This approach fosters a culture of integrity, responsibility, and excellence within the team or organization. Leading by example is a powerful leadership tool, as it shows that actions carry weight in leadership, often speaking louder than words.

As more women ascend to leadership positions, the landscape of leadership is diversifying, enriching organizations and societies. Leadership skills are not confined to gender; they are about capabilities, determination, and the drive to make a positive impact. Women who possess these leadership skills for women are paving the way to success, inspiring generations to come and proving that leadership knows no gender boundaries.

Women of Rubies, a pioneering platform dedicated to celebrating and empowering women’s accomplishments, is elated to announce the upcoming launch of its highly anticipated event – the Media Visibility BootCamp. This exclusive event is meticulously crafted to arm female business owners and emerging influencers with the essential tools and strategies required to elevate their media presence and create a profound impact within their respective fields.

The Women of Rubies Media Visibility BootCamp transcends a traditional learning experience; it’s a transformative odyssey designed to equip participants with the skills necessary to amplify their voices, elevate their personal brand, and create an enduring impression. The program seamlessly integrates expert-led guidance, interactive exercises, and a nurturing community to ensure attendees achieve their maximum potential for growth.

“Excitement fills the air as we prepare to host the Women of Rubies Media Visibility BootCamp, an exceptional event aimed at empowering and uplifting women in the realm of business,” announced Esther Ijewere, the visionary Founder of Women of Rubies. “Our objective is to provide participants with knowledge and resources that will empower them to magnify their voices and attain their pinnacle potential. It’s time for women to shine brightly and leave their indelible mark on the media landscape!”

Scheduled to unfold virtually on August 11th and 12th, the BootCamp offers limited slots, urging participants to secure their place promptly at this transformative event by registering at womenofrubies.com/bootcamp. The agenda boasts a stellar lineup of six trailblazing thought leaders and experts hailing from the media, marketing, and business domains.

The distinguished panel includes Tosin Ajibade, Esther Ijewere, Nora Agbakhamen, Brenda Okorogba, Chichi Uchendu, and Gusi Tobby. Attendees will be granted the unique privilege of learning directly from these accomplished professionals, gleaning priceless insights and pragmatic advice to enhance their brand visibility and influence.

Concluding the BootCamp is a captivating fireside chat featuring luminous speakers: Ariyike Akinbobola, Maryam Muritala, Funmi Ayowole, and Nikki Porcher. For more details about this event and to discover the complete agenda, kindly visit womenofrubies.com.

For media inquiries, sponsorship opportunities, or further information about the event, please reach out to:

Email: Info@womenofrubies.com

Exciting news has emerged in the fashion and media industry as Marie Claire announces Nikki Ogunnaike as their incoming editor-in-chief. With her tenure commencing on August 8th, Ogunnaike will assume a pivotal role in shaping the editorial direction of Marie Claire across multiple platforms, including print, digital, events, and social media. This significant appointment has generated great enthusiasm and anticipation among industry insiders and fashion enthusiasts alike.

A Visionary Leader

In a statement, Hillary Kerr, the chief content officer of Who What Wear and Marie Claire, expressed her confidence in Ogunnaike’s exceptional talent, noting her visionary mindset, impeccable taste, and extensive experience. Kerr’s endorsement further emphasized Ogunnaike’s ability to lead the historic brand into a new era while nurturing the growth of Future’s Women’s Network.

Expanding Fashion and Luxury Coverage

As part of her new role, Ogunnaike will spearhead the expansion of fashion and luxury coverage, propelling Marie Claire’s presence across various platforms. Her mission will include driving audience diversification and enhancing the overall content strategy. This strategic focus reflects the brand’s commitment to providing women with a comprehensive destination that celebrates their careers, personal style, and their engagement with the world around them.

Expressing her enthusiasm for the opportunity, Nikki Ogunnaike conveyed her admiration for Marie Claire’s reputation as a trusted source for women seeking purpose and power in their lives. She expressed her eagerness to lead the brand into a new chapter, catering to women who are passionate about their careers, personal style, and their impact on the world. With her unique perspective and vision, Ogunnaike is poised to usher in an exciting era for Marie Claire.

Her New Role

The appointment of Nikki Ogunnaike as the incoming editor-in-chief of Marie Claire marks a significant moment in the magazine’s history. With her exceptional leadership qualities, distinct point of view, and unparalleled experience, Ogunnaike is set to guide the brand into a new era of success. Fashion enthusiasts and Marie Claire readers can anticipate a fresh and dynamic approach to fashion and luxury coverage across all platforms. As August 8th approaches, the industry eagerly awaits the commencement of this new chapter, brimming with excitement and anticipation for what the future holds under Nikki Ogunnaike’s guidance.

The political journey of Aishatu Binani is a remarkable tale of perseverance, determination, and unwavering commitment to creating a better future for her community and country.

Though she faced numerous challenges and obstacles as a woman in a male-dominated political sphere, her passion for social justice and equality never wavered.

From humble beginnings, she rose through the ranks to become a respected leader, earning the trust and admiration of her constituents and peers alike.

We will explore the fascinating political journey of Aishatu Binani, from her early activism to her current role as a trailblazing politician and advocate for change.

Aishatu Binani: A Trailblazer for Women in Nigerian Politics

Aishatu Binani’s political career is trailblazing, marked by her efforts to empower women and bring diversity to Nigerian politics.

She broke barriers and shattered glass ceilings as the first woman to be elected as governor in her state.

Her inspiring journey from humble beginnings to political success has been a beacon of hope for women across Nigeria, who often face significant obstacles in entering politics.

By leveraging her platform and experience as a grassroots activist, Binani navigated the often male-dominated political arena and made a real impact in her community.

Indeed, Binani’s leadership has not only opened doors for other women in Nigerian politics. In addition to that, it also helped to bring about meaningful change in her state.

Early Life and Education

Aishatu Binani was born on the 22nd of June, 1957, in Gombe State, Nigeria. She was born into a humble family, and her parents believed in the power of education.

They ensured that she received a quality education and encouraged her to pursue her dreams.

Aishatu Binani attended the University of Maiduguri, where she obtained a degree in Business Administration in 1980

Career in Banking

After completing her studies, Aishatu Binani began her career in banking. She subsequently worked at the Central Bank of Nigeria and later joined the Nigerian Agricultural and Cooperative Bank.

Her success in the banking industry was evident as she became the first female executive director of the Bank of Industry in Nigeria.

The Political Journey of Aishatu Binani

Aishatu Binani’s political interest began when she joined the Social Democratic Party (SDP) in 1990.  She believed that women could contribute significantly to the political arena and sought to create a platform for women to participate actively.

Her passion for politics and gender advocacy led her to establish the Women for Change Initiative (WCI). This non-governmental organization sought to promote the participation of women in politics.

In 1991, Aishatu Binani contested for a seat in the Gombe State House of Assembly but lost. Undeterred, she continued to pursue her political ambitions, and in 1992, she contested for a seat in the National Assembly, which she won.

She became a member of the House of Representatives, representing the Kaltungo/Shongom Federal Constituency in Gombe State.

Governorship Bid and Victory

In 1999, Aishatu Binani made history when she contested for the governorship of Gombe State, becoming the first female candidate to do so in Nigeria. 

However, the idea that a woman could not effectively govern a state in Nigeria was met with skepticism and resistance.

Nevertheless, Aishatu Binani was undaunted, and she campaigned tirelessly, focusing on issues such as education, healthcare, and women’s empowerment.

She became Nigeria’s first female governor after a successful campaign that resonated with the residents of Gombe.

Achievements as Governor

As governor, Aishatu Benini set out to fulfill her campaign promises to improve education, healthcare, and infrastructure.

She established a scholarship scheme for disadvantaged students and initiated the construction of roads and bridges to connect communities in the state.

Aishatu also instituted initiatives to foster women’s autonomy, setting up a microcredit scheme for women entrepreneurs and forming a Women’s Affairs Ministry.

Her administration was marked by transparency and accountability, and she worked to improve the living standards of the people of Adamawa State.


Aishatu Binani’s legacy as the first female governor in Nigeria continues to inspire women. Her political journey is rooted in her years of grassroots activism.

As a young woman, she was passionate about advocating for women’s rights and empowering marginalized communities.

She worked tirelessly to promote gender equality, increase access to education, and improve healthcare services in her community.

Her advocacy work helped bring about real change in many people’s lives.

During her grassroots activism, she laid the foundation for her political career, and she remains committed to serving the people of her community.

Binani’s story is a powerful example of how one person can make a difference through grassroots activism and advocacy.

It inspires others who seek to create positive change in their communities.


Aishatu Benini overcame strenuous obstacles to become Nigeria’s first female governor.

Her determination and hard work paved the way for more women to take leadership positions in Nigerian politics. Her legacy will continue to inspire generations of women to come.

Regardless of the kind of agriculture you practice, it is undeniable that the agribusiness is a lucrative business. Either as a fish farmer, a poultry farmer or you supply processed agricultural products, you are guaranteed a source of livelihood as an agripreneur.

Metsana Kojane, founder of Eden Roots PTY Ltd, is putting bees at the heart of her business. Her production of pure, natural honey has not only created local agri-processing jobs for women in her community, but also the creation of a natural skincare brand using the wax, propolis and royal jelly from her raw honey hives.

Metsana is a mother, a community leader, environmental activist and role model to many young women and girls in her village. She is also a Brand Builder and a graduate of VEGA.
She believes her business is a special one because it embraces their cultural heritage passed on by their foremothers who had unique ways of keeping bees and they used indigenous herbs for healing and staying healthy.

Eden roots pride themselves as being the custodians of the most important creature on planet earth that is also an endangered species. Without bees there will be no food and without bees there will be no life on earth.

Metsana describes her entrepreneurial life as a secondary pursuit and gives credit to passion as her force and motivation to do what she does. In her words, “I love and enjoy my work so much that I could work around the clock without even realising it. I tried a few business ideas previously but this one is more than just a business… It is my calling!’

With her business, Metsana plans to show Africa that our indigenous African beehive can yield good harvest of honey and other by-products. She also aspires to use the healing secrets of the hive to provide the world with unique natural products. She would also like to groom as many beekeepers as possible because the African eco system needs bees.

Metsana encourages women everywhere in the world to open their eyes to see the opportunities around them. She says “There are so many problems to solve out there in the world and for each problem a woman must rise to find solutions. Behind every solution, lies an opportunity to make money. You have all it takes because you are a woman!”

Eden Roots is an agribusiness with a presence in horticulture, beekeeping and agro processing.

The company was registered in 2015 but the business existed informally prior to that for 5 years. Beside producing natural honey, they also economically empower groups of women and girls with beekeeping skills.

There are so many women who have dreams, visions, plans and blueprints on what they want to achieve in their lives. Oftentimes those visions and plans come into fruition and other times those blueprints never lead to the building blocks they envisioned. Why is that? From time women have been taught to hold their tongues, talk themselves out of pursuing lofty goals and succumbing to the pressures of life.

The hidden truth behind why women limit their dreams is because there is this false idea that has been deeply planted in the minds of women that says, “I am not good enough.” For every “I can” there is a young woman somewhere saying, “but.” I am sure that men may experience the same limitations, however, the contexts are different. Women face an unusual amount of pressure to live up to certain expectations and social constructs that are placed upon them. All of these “pressure” points have unintended consequences that hinder a woman from fully creating the life she envisions for herself.

Most importantly, limitations are primarily seen as self-creating. Therefore external factors that cause self-limitation are not given enough attention. Insecurity is not only caused by internal issues, but is also caused by external factors. Young women need to be able to identify areas in their lives that chip away at their self-confidence. People, culture, familial expectations, and environments can serve as a big contributor to the lack of self-confidence. Self-imposed limitations compounded with external factors make it more difficult for women to pursue their dreams. The only way to move forward is by understanding that what you don’t allow to continue has no power in influencing your life.


Credit: Yetunde A. Odugbesan Omede

Guardian Woman

The co-convener of the “Bring Back Our Girls” Movement, Aisha Yesufu, known for her fearless stance on National issues, is the latest cover lady of Guardian Life Magazine as she talks about being a girl child in Northern Nigeria, feminism, religious faux, marriage and being a “BBOG” warrior.

Born in Northern Nigeria, where the female child is expected to keep mute on certain issues, little Aisha Yesufu was already breaking the rules by speaking out whenever there was injustice.

Read excerpts from her interview:

On growing up, she says:

“Even though my parents or adults were angry at me for speaking up especially when it does not favour them; when they had that need to have someone that was unbiased to look at issues, they would call me.”

“I have the gift to look at issues from both sides even when I am involved and when I am not. I am able to tell people, “okay look at it like this”. My mother would always say, ‘nobody wins in your court’, but in that same court when they want the issues to be told plainly, they would come.”

On Feminism and Marriage:

“I am very, very lazy. My parents used to say, ‘Is everything book?’ Even when my husband proposed, I told him, I am lazy and I hate housework, I hate cooking and he was ready to go with it.”

“I set systems in place to work for me. I hire and pay people to make me jobless. By the grace of God, I will never work for anybody so I have time on my hands.”

“Being brought up to expect that a man that will take of you, it was my husband that taught me to be financially independent so that I can have control over my voice and not be dependent.”

On being a Bring Back Our Girls warrior;

“Growing up, the average Nigerian was taught that you should not question elders. They grew up with how not to question authority and it went on through school. Now that they have become adults, they have used government to replace parents so they don’t question authority.”

“Fortunately, we are seeing more movements like BBOG inspire them to stay on course. They are realising that the office of the citizen is actually the highest office in the land. They are realizing that we don’t need permission from the police to protest but protection.”

“Whatever I am doing today, I am fighting for that little girl that I was that yearned for help, that begged to be helped with a textbook so that I can read and pass my exams. If I ever give up that fight, I will be giving up on myself.


In recent times, particularly in 2018, there has been a stronger movement in favour of empowering women in the film industry. From gender pay gap uprisings with the highest paid actresses in the Hollywood demanding the same pay as men in equivalent roles, to sexual harassment claims which gave birth to the #MeToo movement, there are many areas in the industry addressing the need to empower its women. Some of these issues were harder to address in the past as even top actresses needed the work, and with fewer leading lady roles decided to stay silent until much later after any grievances they may have faced. Today, Anita Kouassigan shares her view that there is a need to invest in more women screenwriters and directors.

In this day and age, with the many digital distractions we face by overusing our mobile phones, I firmly believe that film – more than ever – will remain the most effective medium for catching – and keeping – one’s attention when a story is being told. There’s nothing that focuses my mind more than escaping into a movie -at least a decent one, with an engaging story. And the use of film as a tool for storytelling and engagement is a major part of our March event as with all our events.

“There will be screenings of short clips showcasing the messages our sponsors and partners want to deliver. It could be an internally produced documentary that contains footage of a school that’s just been built. Or a view of the first hospital commissioned in a rural area. Or interviews of a victim who’s able to tell their story after being freed from some form of bondage.

Women can certainly become more empowered with an increase in films created to tell even the most uncomfortable stories about their struggles, and this includes documentaries, such as The Uncondemned, possibly one of the most uncomfortable yet. It is a film about the first conviction of rape as a war crime and component of genocide (directed by Michele Mitchell and Nick Louvel-now late, sadly). They worked together as a great team, and I am not suggesting we have films made by women alone, we just need more input from women, which means that there is a need to invest in women in film. Women in film need more funding, in their various roles, including on set, but especially when it comes to screenwriting and directing.

Let us consider the argument in favour of more women having a seat at the table (in boardrooms) and the need for women to play more important roles in the decision-making process of a country (women in law and politics). Those arguments are from the same underlying principle of the need for women to have a voice.

Similarly, in film, more women need to partake in the story-telling process and in directing films, as that is what will ultimately determine how a story comes across. It’s an ongoing reality that not enough scripts are being written by women (perhaps they need more of an incentive?), and men cannot entirely understand the feminine experience. I am not saying we should leave men out; we just need more of a feminine input.

Oftentimes, not enough lines or screen time are dedicated to female roles to humanise a character and one of the most negative aspects still ongoing in the film industry is the objectification of women. It’s still common for female characters to be ridden with clichés and in order to really sell a movie, women may have to appear sexy in order to be viewed as powerful. Why does a woman have to be sexy to be powerful? Why can’t she just be smart and influential in order to be powerful?

Maggie Gyllenhaal recently remarked in an interview that the use of sex in films is used as a tool for female roles to capture the attention of the audience, then they’ll be heard. On screen, women are oftentimes treated as accessories expected to look beautiful, glamorous and extravagant. The key is finding ways to make filmmaking more progressive, giving more dimension to female characters and their stories.

Scripts are often written by men, and while I am not suggesting that male screenwriters set out demean women, they naturally lack certain knowledge that only a woman can have about the certain women-centric issues being addressed. On the other side of what’s deemed as entertaining, there’s the portrayal of bitchy or evil (both with negative connotations), far from empowering.

But things are changing – including in Nigeria. Isoken, directed by Jade Osiberu is a film that has pushed boundaries in terms of the story itself and the way the lead actress (Dakore Egbuson-Akande) depicts her role. She does so in an empowered expression of the issues and choices she’s facing, subjects that are normally deemed as taboo and that cause people (both men and women) to even disrespect a woman in Isoken’s position. But there is still a funding gap for films written and directed by women, and actress-turned-director is still a harder promotion, compared with the case of men.



Credit: Anita Kouassigan, Guardian Woman

When I think about the empowerment of women and children, I like to tackle the issue from the ROOT cause and in many cases- the lack of financial empowerment is one of the root causes of their disempowerment.


Lolo Cynthia Is a public health specialist, sexuality educator and founder of the social enterprise LoloTalks, that employs all forms of media (online and offline) to create awareness and sustainable solutions to our contemporary social and health issues in Africa.  She also doubles as a documentary and talk show producer and lends her voice on issues regarding interpersonal relationships, sexuality, gender, and social issues through her YouTube channel LoloTalks and her blog.

#Bloom is a hashtag my friend recently started using when discussing (with) women and I understand perfectly why she has become obsessed by the need to see the womenfolk flourish.

Yesterday, I was further steered into analyzing what exactly my friend is on about. I was watching a movie, of a flourishing woman, who would rather be relegated and have her partner take the limelight. She wished, prayed and acted. Consulted all sorts of people to make this happen.
Women deal with a lot of unhealthy emotions and now, thoughts. It is perfectly okay to wish well for others but do not, I repeat, DO NOT wish any less for/on yourself.
 ‘Love your neighbor AS yourself’- This was said with the expectation that you have loved yourself first and foremost.
Do you know the saying that the sky is big enough for all birds to soar? It’s literal meaning is not only in birds but also humans (notice how this is human and not gender specific?)
It beats me to see women lurking in the shadows or wanting to.
To you, woman;
You are created with enormous potential. Your powers are phenomenal. Your wisdom is unprecedented. You are not an after thought creation, you were created to fill a palpable, conspicuous void. You are created with a purpose.
Stop lurking in shadows. Stop taking the backseat when the best has been reserved for you. Love yourself!
Approve of yourself. Bloom woman, bloom!