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Anna Mokogokong is a medical doctor by profession, who set off in 1995 to start what has today become one of South Africa’s biggest business success stories. She is a businesswoman who has received international acclaim for her entrepreneurial ability. She has been a born entrepreneur as she has traded sandwiches for cash from a tender age in primary school. Anna Mokgokong was born in Soweto and raised in Swaziland.  She promotes women to be on boards as well as in the procurement sector. She considers herself self as an activist in this regard. She went on to complete her BSc. from the University of Botswana before going to Medunsa to complete her MBChB. It was during this time that Anna’s real entrepreneurial flair came into being.

She is presently married with two children. In 1981, whilst studying medicine, Anna started a business selling handbags and belts to her fellow students and residents at Medunsa. Through a contact in Swaziland, she was given R40 000 worth of stock. The business became a huge success and diversified to include African clothing and curios. The lecturers at medical school did not like the fact that Anna was running a lucrative business whilst studying and tried to persuade her to drop her business interest and focus on her studies even though she was one of the top performing students at Medunsa. She rose above the discouragements, and the undeterred Anna continued with her business. By the time she completed her medical degree, she was able to sell her business for R150000. Anna used this capital to establish the Hebron Medical Centre in 1992. Overcoming significant obstacles, she built the center from a zero-base into a primary health care and baby welfare clinic with over 40000 patients, serving eight villages.

As an entrepreneur, Anna is passionate about ensuring that previously disadvantaged South Africans have the opportunity to participate in the broader economy. She has made tremendous trademarks as has served on various boards. Dr. Mokgokong serves on the Boards of Novartis SA (Pty) Ltd. (Pharmaceuticals), and Fasic Investment Corporation (Pty) Ltd./Fasic Limited with significant holdings in Lion Match and Kimberly Clark. She believes that while CI Holdings strives to maximize shareholder value, it is companies who promote the wider interests of their stakeholders and of society that have the strongest chance of long-term success.

As a businesswoman she has received international acclaims for her entrepreneurial ability – co-owner of Community Investment Holdings (and South Africa’s Business Woman of the Year in 1999), her list of accolades is as long as her list of executive portfolios and directorships she holds at some of South Africa’s biggest and most esteemed organizations and corporations. Today, she is worth an estimated R107-million; Dr. Mokgokong has been identified as one of the top ten wealthiest black South African entrepreneurs. Her multibillion-rand company (Community Investment Holdings), which she jointly owns with business partner Joe Madungandaba, is one of the most successful companies of its kind in the country.

Anna Mokgokong is the Co-founder and Executive Chairperson of Community Investment Holdings. She is also a Non-Executive Director of Afrocentric, a board member of four listed companies and chair of three, including Shoprite Checkers, the largest retailer in Africa where she is the first woman director. Mokgokong notes that governance plays a critical role in enabling the sustainability of any business and can save you the pain of having to clean up.  She sits on the board of several organizations.

As CIH executive chair, Mokgokong joins a select group of black women leading successful businesses. However, her success should perhaps be rated above that of most black executives because she did not take over her position at a company with successful investment, but rather had to put together deals that have built CIH into the company that it is today, in line with her belief in hard work as a pathway to success.

She has received several awards and recognitions.

HE Sheikha Lubna bint Khalid bin Sultan Al-Qasimi is a member of the ruling family of Sharjah and the niece to His Highness, Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Muhammed Al-Qasimi.

She is the first woman to hold a ministerial post in the United Arab Emirates, respectively holding the positions of Minister of State for International Cooperation and Development, Minister of Foreign Trade, and Minister of Economic and Planning of the United Arab Emirates (UAE). HE Sheikha Lubna currently holds the position of Minister of State for Tolerance.

She received her Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science from the California State University and acquired an Executive MBA from the American University of Sharjah. In March 2014, HE Sheikha Lubna received an honorary doctorate of science, from California State University, Chico; she also has an honorary doctorate in law and economics from the University of Exeter and the Hankuk University of Foreign Studies respectively.

While serving as the Minister of Foreign Trade, she had received commendations with her background in IT for developing a system that slashed the cargo turnaround times at the Dubai airport and also creating the first ever business-to-business online marketplace in the Middle East.

Besides from fulfilling her roles as a Minister, HE Sheikha Lubna bint Khalid bin Sultan Al-Qasimi also sits on the Board of various organizations, offering her knowledge when needed.

As a Minister of State for Tolerance, she is working towards creating and building a platform where there is a generally accepted and diversified living condition in the United Arab Emirates.

Some of her Awards and recognition include Datamatix IT Woman of the Year 2001; Commonwealth of Kentucky Honorary title — Kentucky Colonel, 2003; Business. Com Personal Contribution Award, 200,1 among others.

 

Here’s how soon you can truthfully say, “don’t worry, I’m not contagious.”               

The holiday season is all about sharing: warm embraces with family and friends, heaping spreads of food, good cheer galore, and, inevitably, cold and flu bugs. But should you skip out on all the fun just because a cold or the flu has left you feeling a little under the weather? As long as you’re not sweating bullets with a fever and come armed with a pocketful of Ricola drops in case you break out in a coughing fit, it can’t do any harm to join the party, right?   Not so fast, experts say.

“In general, cold/flu symptoms may last for about a week to ten days,” Margarita Rohr, MD, clinical instructor of internal medicine at NYU Langone Health, tells Health. “And you are most contagious one day prior to the start of symptoms until five to seven days after symptoms start. In some cases, you can still be contagious for up to two weeks after onset of symptoms.”  Translation: Even though you might feel better, it doesn’t mean you are better, and even though you mean well, you’re spreading no joy by spreading your germs around. Simply put, “you should consider yourself contagious if you still feel under the weather,” Sherif Mossad, MD, an infectious disease specialist at the Cleveland Clinic, tells Health.

Though no one wants to spend the holidays on the sidelines, do your friends and co-workers a favor and take one for the team, advises Dr. Rohr: “In an ideal world, it would be best to avoid social activities for 5-7 days after the onset of symptoms. For returning to work, I usually suggest waiting until 24 hours fever-free. If you feel lousy or you’re sneezing and coughing significantly, just stay home.” And controlling your fever with acetaminophen or ibuprofen doesn’t count, either: You’re still contagious even if you’re using meds to lower your temperature, says Dr. Rohr.  If you absolutely have to show your face while you’re recuperating, at least come with good cold/flu etiquette. Pack your travel-size Kleenex (from $4; amazon.com), and cover your mouth when you sneeze or cough. “Best in a disposable tissue, second best in your elbow,” says Dr. Mossad. “Don’t cough or sneeze into your hand.”

Remember to wash your hands frequently, especially after touching your eyes, nose, or mouth, and particularly before coming in for a tight hug with Aunt Jane. And steer well clear of the crudité so you don’t get cold or flu particles on the food. “When a sick person sneezes or coughs, the virus can be sent up to 6 feet away,” notes Dr. Rohr. 

And if you find yourself on the other side of the equation, warily shaking hands with a nose-runner at the office holiday fete and then realize you’re sniffling and sneezing the next morning? Rest up, but try to temper your instinct to assign blame: It actually takes 2-3 days, and sometimes up to a week, from the time of exposure to developing symptoms, Dr. Rohr explains. So you probably picked it up from someone else earlier in the week.

Source: Health

NOT long ago women faced tremendous barriers as they sought opportunities that would set them on an equal footing with men. Going back a mere quarter century, inequality between women and men was widely apparent—in university classrooms, in the workplace, and even in homes. Since then, the lives of women and girls around the world have improved dramatically in many respects. In most countries—rich and developing—they are going to school more, living longer, getting better jobs, and acquiring legal rights and protections.

But large gender gaps remain. Women and girls are more likely to die, relative to men and boys, in many low- and middle-income countries than their counterparts in rich countries. Women earn less and are less economically productive than men almost everywhere across the world. And women have less opportunity to shape their lives and make decisions than do men.

According to the World Bank’s 2012 World Development Report; Gender Equality and Development, closing these gender gaps matters for development and policymaking. Greater gender equality can enhance economic productivity, improve development outcomes for the next generation, and make institutions and policies more representative.

Many gender disparities remain even as countries develop, which calls for sustained and focused public action. Corrective policies will yield substantial development payoffs if they focus on persistent gender inequalities that matter most for welfare. To be effective, these measures must target the root causes of inequality without ignoring the domestic political economy.

Mixed progress

Every aspect of gender equality, access to education and health, economic opportunities, and voice within households and society, has experienced a mixed pattern of change over the past quarter-century. In some areas, such as education, the gender gap has closed for almost all women; but progress has been slower for those who are poor and face other disadvantages, such as ethnicity. In other areas, the gap has been slow to close, even among well-off women and in countries that have otherwise developed rapidly.

In primary education, the gender gap has closed in almost all countries, and it is shrinking quickly in secondary education. Indeed, in almost one-third of developing countries, girls now outnumber boys in secondary schools. There are more young women than men in universities in two-thirds of the countries for which there are data: women today represent 51 percent of the world’s university students. Yet more than 35 million girls do not attend school in developing countries, compared with 31 million boys, and two-thirds of these girls are members of ethnic minorities.

Since 1980, women have been living longer than men in all parts of the world. But across all developing countries, more women and girls still die at younger ages relative to men and boys, compared with rich countries. As a result of this “excess female mortality,” about 3.9 million girls and women under 60 are “missing” each year in developing countries. About two-fifths of them are never born, one-sixth die in early childhood and more than one-third die during their reproductive years. Female mortality is growing in sub-Saharan Africa, especially for women of childbearing age and in the countries hit hardest by the HIV/AIDS pandemic (World Bank, 2011, Chapter 3).

More than half a billion women have joined the world’s labor force over the past 30 years, and women now account for more than 40 percent of workers worldwide. One reason for increased workforce participation is an unprecedented reduction in fertility in developing countries as diverse as Bangladesh, Colombia, and the Islamic Republic of Iran, along with improvements in female education. Yet women everywhere tend to earn less than men (World Bank, 2011, especially Chapter 5). The reasons are varied. Women are more likely than men to work as unpaid family laborers or in the informal sector. Women farmers cultivate smaller plots and less profitable crops than male farmers. And women entrepreneurs operate smaller businesses in less lucrative sectors.

As for rights and voice, almost every country in the world has now ratified the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women. Yet, in many countries, women (especially poor women) have less say than men when it comes to decisions and resources in their households. Women are also much more likely to suffer domestic violence—in developing and rich countries. And in all countries, rich and poor alike, fewer women participate in formal politics, especially at higher levels.

Gender equality and development

Gender equality is important in its own right. Development is a process of expanding freedoms equally for all people—male and female (Sen, 2009). Closing the gap in well-being between males and females is as much a part of development as is reducing income poverty. Greater gender equality also enhances economic efficiency and improves other development outcomes. It does so in three main ways:

  • First, with women now representing 40 percent of the global labor force and more than half the world’s university students, overall productivity will increase if their skills and talents are used more fully. For example, if women farmers have the same access as men to productive resources such as land and fertilizers, agricultural output in developing countries could increase by as much as 2.5 to 4 percent (FAO, 2011). Elimination of barriers against women working in certain sectors or occupations could increase output by raising women’s participation and labor productivity by as much as 25 percent in some countries through better allocation of their skills and talent (Cuberes and Teignier-Baqué, 2011).

 

  • Second, greater control over household resources by women, either through their own earnings or cash transfers, can enhance countries’ growth prospects by changing spending in ways that benefit children. Evidence from countries as varied as Brazil, China, India, South Africa, and the United Kingdom shows that when women control more household income—either through their own earnings or through cash transfers—children benefit as a result of more spending on food and education (World Bank, 2011).

 

  • Finally, empowering women as economic, political, and social actors can change policy choices and make institutions more representative of a range of voices. In India, giving power to women at the local level led to the greater provision of public goods, such as water and sanitation, which mattered more to women (Beaman and others, 2011).

The second part of the article can start here.

Gearing up development: How gender equality evolves as development proceeds can best be understood through the responses of households to the functioning and structure of markets and institutions—both formal (such as laws, regulations, and delivery of government services) and informal (such as gender roles, norms, and social networks).

This framework helps demonstrate why the gender gap in education enrollment has closed so quickly. In this case, income growth (by loosening budget constraints on households and the public treasury), markets (by opening new employment opportunities for women), and formal institutions (by expanding schools and lowering costs) have come together to influence household decisions in favor of educating girls and young women across a range of countries.

The framework also helps explain why poor women still face sizable gender gaps, especially those who experience not only poverty but also other forms of exclusion, such as living in a remote area, being a member of an ethnic minority, or suffering from a disability. In India and Pakistan, for instance, while there is no difference between the number of boys and girls enrolled in education for the richest fifth of the population, there is a gap of almost five years for the poorest fifth. The illiteracy rate among indigenous women in Guatemala is twice that among nonindigenous women and 20 percentage points higher than for indigenous men. Market signals, improved service delivery institutions, and higher incomes, which have generally favored the education of girls and young women, fail to reach these severely disadvantaged populations.

 

Policy implications: To bring about gender equality, policymakers need to focus their actions on five clear priorities: reducing the excess mortality of girls and women; eliminating remaining gender disadvantages in education; increasing women’s access to economic opportunity and thus earnings and productivity; giving women an equal voice in households and societies; and limiting the transmission of gender inequality across generations.

To reduce the excess mortality of girls and women, it is necessary to focus on the underlying causes at each age. Given girls’ higher susceptibility (relative to boys’) in infancy and early childhood to waterborne infectious diseases, improving water supply and sanitation, as Vietnam has done, is key to reducing excess female mortality in this age group (World Bank, 2011). Improving health care delivery to expectant mothers, as Sri Lanka did early in its development process and Turkey has done more recently, is critical. In the areas of sub-Saharan Africa most affected by the HIV/AIDS pandemic, broader access to antiretroviral drugs and reducing the incidence of new infections must be the focus. To counter sex-selective abortions that lead to fewer female births, most notably in China and northern India, the societal value of girls must be enhanced, as Korea has done.

To shrink education gaps in countries where they persist, barriers to access because of poverty, ethnicity, or geography must come down. For example; where distance is the key problem (as in rural areas of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan), establishing more schools in remote areas can reduce the gender gap. When customized solutions are hard to implement or too costly, demand-side interventions, such as cash transfers conditioned on school attendance, can help get girls from poor families to school. Such conditional cash transfers have succeeded in increasing girls’ enrollment rates in countries as diverse as Mexico, Turkey, and Pakistan (World Bank, 2011).

To broaden women’s access to economic opportunity, thereby reducing male-female disparity in earnings and economic productivity, a combination of policies is called for. Solutions include freeing up women’s time so they can work outside the home—for example, through subsidized child care, as in Colombia; improving women’s access to credit, as in Bangladesh; and ensuring access to productive resources—especially land—as in Ethiopia, where joint land titles are now granted to wives and husbands. Addressing lack of information about women’s productivity in the workplace and eliminating institutional biases against women, for example by introducing quotas that favor women or job placement programs as in Jordan, will also open up economic opportunity to women.

To diminish gender differences in household and societal voice, policies need to address the combined influence of social norms and beliefs, women’s access to economic opportunities, the legal framework, and women’s education. Measures that increase women’s control over household resources and laws that enhance their ability to accumulate assets, especially by strengthening their property rights, are important. Morocco’s recent family law reforms strengthened women’s property rights by equalizing husbands’ and wives’ ownership rights over property acquired during the marriage. Ways to give women a greater voice in society include political representation quotas, training of future women leaders, and expanding women’s involvement in trade unions and professional associations.

To limit gender inequality over time, reaching adolescents and young adults iskey. Decisions made during this stage of life determine skills, health, economic opportunities, and aspirations in adulthood. To ensure that gender gaps do not persist over time, policies must emphasize building human and social capital (as in Malawi with cash transfers given directly to girls to either stay in or return to school); easing the transition from school to work (as with job and life skills training programs for young women in Uganda); and shifting aspirations (by exposing girls to such role models as women political leaders in India).

Domestic policy action is crucial, but the international community can complement efforts in each of these priority areas. This will require new or additional action on multiple fronts—some combination of more funding, coordinated efforts to foster innovation and learning, and more effective partnerships. Funding should be directed particularly to the poorest countries’ efforts to reduce excess deaths of girls and women (through investment in clean water and sanitation and maternal services) and to reduce persistent education gender gaps. Partnerships must also extend beyond those between governments and development agencies to include the private sector, civil society organizations, and academic institutions in developing and rich countries.

And while so much remains to be done, in many ways the world has already changed by finally recognizing that gender equality is good for both women and men. More and more, we are all realizing that there are many benefits—economic and others—that will result from closing gender gaps. A man from Hanoi, Vietnam, one of the thousands of people surveyed for the World Development Report, observed, “I think women nowadays increasingly enjoy more equality with men. They can do whatever job they like. They are very strong. In some families, the wife is the most powerful person. In general, men still dominate, but women’s situation has greatly improved. Equal cooperation between husband and wife is happiness. I think happiness is when equality exists between couples”

By: Ana Revenga and SudhirShetty

 

There are daily habits that could definitely help you crack the code of feeling more comfortable in your own skin. You don’t need to be a high-class celebrity to be confident and keep your shoulders high rather; you just have to recognize that being confident is not a destination but a great step to achieving that sparkling bright future.

Being confident is a process to find your light, embrace it, and learn to let yourself shine without fear of being dimmed by the outside.  Below are seven (7) great habits that can boost a woman’s confidence in a tremendous way:-

  1. Use Positive Affirmations: To improve your confidence you should have several positive sentences that you repeat to yourself many times throughout your day. The use of positive affirmation is a very powerful way to program the subconscious mind and create action as you are first who you say you are, before what others think you are. A confident woman learns how to use positive words to describe what she wants to happen and she says it with feeling conviction.
  2. Have a Strong Sense of Self: Confident women know themselves deeply and find strength from self-awareness. To boost your confidence you must learn to find comfort first in yourself; before seeking for it in others. Confident women find stability from themselves no matter how stressful and tumultuous, their external environment might be. More importantly, this stability consistently reinforces their confidence in themselves.
  3. Acknowledge your Successes: Past achievements and successes help to improve a woman’s confidence. Confident women make the time to recognize their successes and be grateful for what they have already accomplished in their lives. Make a list of all the successes and accomplishments or anything you are proud of yourself for, no matter how big or how “small” they are; this will be a great tool to look back and reflect on when you have moments of insecurity.
  4. Embrace Discomfort: Confident women are not 100% confident all the time, every second of every day. They sometimes wake up with self-doubt, fear, and uncertainty. They even wonder if they’ve made the right decisions, if they’re good enough, if they’ll fail and if they’ll succeed but; they don’t let it control their actions or inhibit their growth. They embrace the discomfort and use it to make room to grow.
  5. Have Clear Goals and Action Plans to Achieve Them: A confident woman understands that while goals are important, they don’t mean anything unless you have an action plan to achieve them. To improve your confidence you must have a plan in place as to how you’re going to achieve every dream.
  6. Take Risks: Your comfort zone is a boring, black box created by those limiting beliefs in your head. If you want a major change in your life, you must change those self-limiting beliefs that have kept you from having what you’ve wanted in the past. Try new things, learn a new skill or try a new hobby. Careless about failure or rejection. Failure is an opportunity to Learn. If it didn’t work out, figure out why, make some changes and try it again.
  7. Smile: Confident women are happy women, so they smile. A lot is said, through our Facial expressions. Our face tells others how interested we are, how alert we are, if we in agreement or not, if we are confident or insecure, if we are upset or happy or relaxed. The absolute best facial expression we can have is a smile; it shows others that you are confident and approachable.

Why not add a spark of confidence to your makeup and see how elegant you will be? Now if you are ready to journey into a life of absolute confidence, why not display a grin that reflects your amazing personality.

 

Mothers around the world make priceless contributions to our lives, oftentimes while balancing the demands of their career and the family. That’s why a day (Mother’s Day) is dedicated annually to celebrate mothers’ around the world, for giving their precious time and resources to provide the much needed balance in our homes. In all these, we need to identify the veritable lessons behind the strength of motherhood and apply them in the day-to-day running of businesses.

Most of the skills mastered and effortlessly practiced by mothers on daily basis are highly sought after in the corporate world and leveraged upon to lead teams; from efficiency to persuasiveness and delegation. In a survey carried out by Moira Forbes, an American Journalist, she highlights Leadership Lessons You Can Learn from Working Mothers; here she talked to seven power mums about the most important lessons they’ve learned about leadership since becoming mothers.

The question; “What is ‘the one thing’ that motherhood has taught you about being a better leader?”

Here’s what they said:

  • Know when to pushand When to Let Go: Christa Quarles is the CEO of OpenTable (an online restaurant-reservation service company), and the mother of two sons. She said Motherhood has taught her when to keep pushing and when to let go. So much of parenting is wrestling with the dichotomy of when to push your child and when to let go and let them drive the direction; thereby enabling the condition that they might fall or fail. My two boys (ages 9 and almost 6) are highly social, sporty and love school, but they also think they are wiser than they could possibly be at this point in their lives. They don’t know what they don’t know yet. My goal Quarles says; is to enable them to be independent, do what they love and make meaningful connections with other people. I think it’s the same with my employees and teams at OpenTable. I want my teams thinking independently and aggressively pursuing goals. They should have enough rope to explore their own ideas and develop their own hypotheses. But it’s also important to step in and course correct. Striking that balance is what defines effective leadership.
  • Roll With The Punches:Sarah Robb O’Hagan is the CEO of Flywheel Sports and the mother of three children, she says; I went in to motherhood assuming that it was going to make my work life so much more stressful because it was adding a whole new set of responsibilities to my plate, but it has actually had the opposite effect for me in that it forced me to relax a little bit and realize that I don’t have to have a plan for everything. You quickly find when you have babies that you can’t control their moods and their needs in the way you can your own workload – so you have to get used to just rolling with the unexpected. And that is a great lesson for leadership – having the flexibility to bob and weave as circumstances around you change, and giving up the illusion that you have control over all of your outcomes. 
  • A Personalized Approach Is Key: this is what Lizzie Widhelm, the SVP of Ad Product Strategy thinks, she is the mother of three sons and she says; my children are two parts amazing, one part insane, and a whole lot of nothing alike. If I don’t adjust to their unique personalities and spend quality time with each of them, we have total chaos at home. The good news for my team at Pandora is I have made a thousand mistakes at home and I use those lessons to bring my best self to work. A personalized leadership approach requires a significant time investment with each individual. I have learned that the work I see in the end tells me very little about what I could have done to help along the way. The secret is observing the process it takes to get there and understanding that everyone has different strengths, passions and motivations. The interesting thing about putting the extra time in with your team is they appreciate you for the investment and in turn your relationship grows and leads to more open and honest conversations. Those conversations are the most rewarding part of my day. Well… until I get home to my crazy kids.
  • Embrace Unknown Territory: Michelle Cordeiro Grant is the Founder and CEO, Lively and the mother of a son and daughter, she says; “Motherhood has taught me not to fear the unknown but instead embrace the journey of learning on the go! Enjoy the fulfilling feeling of “figuring it out” and use that energy and motivation to tackle the next challenge! For me, being a new mother and a new entrepreneur at the same time was all unknown territory. But as I began to meet and exceed one milestone at a time, that momentum and empowerment continued to build. There have been so many amazing and fulfilling accomplishments, from seeing my baby take her first steps to seeing LIVELY make its first shipment! I often reflect upon those moments as I tackle my next great challenge. The big takeaway for me is to use moments of accomplishment, big or small, as fuel to have the courage to go after it all – the sky’s the limit!” 
  • Balance Competing Needs:“An essential role of motherhood is being a conciliator: resolving conflicts – which in my case was often with warring children. While mediating an argument, I sought to teach empathy for the feelings of others and respect for different faiths and backgrounds that may give others a different point of view. Children learn by example; and I was always conscious of that.

I found kids need the security of strong, confident leadership in their parents or caregivers. That’s not always easy when you’re forced to multitask—as I was as a new mother and a young attorney, many times having to balance a child on one hip, on the phone with a client, and making dinner for my husband’s boss.

Seeing their mother as a politician wasn’t easy, but my children gained a healthy respect for civic engagement. I was able to show my children the importance of voting – at a young age I’d take them campaigning to make sure they end up as citizens with a strong social conscious and an appreciation for their country. Motherhood further confirmed my passion for my profession.”

Says Kathy Hochul is the Lieutenant Governor of the State of New York and mother of two.

  • Life Is Right Now: Sabrina Peterson is the Co-Founder and CEO of Pure Growth Organic and a mother of one. She says t’s important to me that the values we communicate to consumers are the same ones that we are living as the brand. You can’t sprint a marathon; and with start-ups, you can easily never stop working and it can be isolating. Before I became a parent, I’d work 24/7—I remember answering work emails an hour before my wedding reception, but it’s not sustainable in the long run, and in fact, stifles creativity and productivity. I am now mindful to make sure the team is living their lives in the present, taking care of themselves, and nurturing their own personal relationships that lead to long-term fulfillment. Life is right now.

All of these things yield greater productivity, creative thinking, and gratitude — and foster both the patience required to build something from scratch, as well as the clarity and honesty needed when something is failing and you need to pivot. We spend 80 percent of our waking lives working, and often, who we are at work mirrors who we are at home. Rather than trying to wear different hats and act as two different people, we should strive to share the same values in the workplace and in the home.

  • Empathy And Balance Are Key: Louise Pentland is the EVP, Chief Business Affairs & Legal Office for PayPal and the mother of one daughter. She says parenting forces you to get outside of yourself. The needs of your child have to come first (and second, and third), and that teaches you invaluable lessons about empathy and balance. This has noticeably affected my leadership style. Everyone wants to do great work; everyone wants to serve the company and contribute to the team; and everyone has a life (some with kids, some without) outside of work. Being a mom has expanded my perspective.

Parenthood also helped (or forced) me learn how to better manage my time and prioritize critical needs for my work and my personal life. At the end of the day, if I preserve the time and energy to do things with my 5-year old daughter and husband – which these days could include anything from gymnastics, soccer, horse riding and being Princess Leia for a few hours – it makes me a better manager and employer. Being a mom taught me how to do that.

So we’ve learnt seven powerful drives from different women, regarded as the most important lesson they’ve learned about leadership since becoming a mother.With the opinions and experiences of these power mums, Moira’s survey gives a perspective on ‘the one thing’ that motherhood teaches about being a better leader?”

In summary it makes you a better leader.

In the East African business circles, few entrepreneurs shine brighter than Njeri Rionge. Rionge is one of Kenya’s most successful and revered serial entrepreneurs; she has co-founded several multi-million dollar companies in quick succession. One of such companies is Wananchi Online, a leading Internet service provider which has gone on to become one of East Africa’s leading cable, broadband, and IP (Internet-based) phone company.

Rionge started her first business at the age of 19, selling yoghurt at schools in the capital city of Nairobi. She went on to sell clothes and run a few other small businesses. Today, she is one of the pioneer women investors in Africa’s IT sector. Wananchi Online is East Africa’s first mass-market internet service provider which has grown to become the region’s leading internet company.

Over the years, Rionge has established a host of other thriving businesses, including Ignite Consulting, a flourishing business consultancy; Ignite Lifestyle, a healthcare consultancy; Business Lounge, one of Kenya’s largest startup incubators; and Incite, a booming digital marketing agency.

Despite her busy schedule, her passion to impart knowledge in young entrepreneurs have not been hindered; the serial entrepreneur shares her passion through Ignite Consulting, which she currently runs as a coaching, strategy facilitation, and skills training centre. Through which she shares her skills with young entrepreneurs in her country, helping them grow their own businesses.

Rionge is passionate about growing businesses and igniting potentials, she believes in Africa as the next economic frontier. She has over 26 years of leadership and change management experience, working with SMEs and entrepreneurs to grow indigenous businesses that can be scaled across Africa. She is also a motivational speaker and life coach, passing on her wisdom and experience to upcoming entrepreneurs.

Rionge, who’s in her late 40s, shows no sign of letting up on entrepreneurship. She is passionate about Africa’s position as the next big economic miracle and wants to contribute to the capacity of the continent to reach its full potential.

Her advice when inspiring upcoming entrepreneurs is to be resilient. Resilience, she believes, or having a strong backbone that can handle challenges, is the key to successful entrepreneurship.