My leitmotif for 2024

"No woman will ever be a great woman if she does not dare to be a woman too“.

In circa 424 BC, Hipparete shared with Alkibiades: "No man will ever be a great man if he does not dare to be a woman too." (Pfeijffer, I. L. (2023), Alkibiades).

Fast forward 2500 years, and I would like to add "No woman will ever be a great woman if she does not dare to be a woman too."

This statement emphasises the imperative of embracing and appreciating qualities traditionally associated with femininity—such as empathy, vulnerability, and caring—by both men and women.

Yet, there's a special call for women to lead the way, daring to embody these qualities boldly. Because these traits have been overlooked for too long, in favour of a focus on skills traditionally associated with masculinity, likely leading to bias against women who excel in them.

As highlighted in my interview with De Tijd earlier this year, I am steadfast in my belief that the key to sustainable success for companies lies in a new era of leadership—one grounded in empathy and human connection. It's time to rebalance a purely result-driven focus with an ethos inspired by care ethics. Imagine the positive impact if we all became more conscious of and cared about the repercussions of our decisions on both our human and non-human environments.

In 2023, I celebrated to graduate as a Master of Arts in Gender and Diversity from Ghent University marking the beginning of my second life career as a corporate advisor in inclusive leadership and corporate culture. My mission is crystal clear: to contribute to the transformation of workplaces designed for our dads into equitable spaces adapted for our daughters and sons. This involves balancing technical skills with a sincere emphasis on the collective, care, vulnerability and empathy— for and in the interest of both men and women.

Because, truly, "No woman will ever be a great woman, nor will a man ever be a great man, if they do not dare to embrace the essence of being a woman too."

Thanks to Ilja Leonard PfeijfferDewi Van De VyverConny VandendriesscheRebecca TielemansAvivah Wittenberg-CoxMelinda French Gates and Carol Gilligan for the inspiration



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About Nathalie Delaere: In a Different Voice

Inclusive Leadership & Corporate Culture Advisory.