As women, we have enormous potential to lead. It’s inherent in who we are. But we tend to dismiss a lot of our feminine attributes as not being effective enough or strong enough. And this simply is not true. That’s why, for this podcast episode, my team and I want to share with you the…

EP #7

Season 5 Episode 7: Leadership is Feminine Formula Day One

As women, we have enormous potential to lead. It’s inherent in who we are. But we tend to dismiss a lot of our feminine attributes as not being effective enough or strong enough. And this simply is not true.

That’s why, for this podcast episode, my team and I want to share with you the recording from the first day of our live, free Leadership is Feminine Formula week. It was so powerful and we hope it emboldens you to no longer lead with just your masculine traits. Our desire for you is to compel you to be who you want to be – who you are designed to be – by putting to use all of your wonderful, valuable and dynamic feminine assets to lead and to lead well.

“When you think about yourself as a leader, how do you compare to what you believe leadership looks like? …. Do you align? And if not, where’s the gap?” – Kris Plachy

What You’ll Learn

  • Learned leadership
  • Feminine assets
  • How you think about yourself
  • The superpower of feeling things
  • Holding boundaries
  • The tendency to use masculine energy

Contact Info and Recommended Resources

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Kris Plachy: Hey, hey, welcome to Leadership is Feminine. This is Kris Plachy, and I have kind of a treat for you. We just recorded the first day of The Leadership is Feminine Formula. This is a five-day free pass that I’m running this week. And my team loved it. And so we decided that we are going to share it with you today as a podcast. It’s really, really powerful. I think it’s going to give you, if you’re kind of new to the podcast, some good background on why I do what I do, and why my team and I do what we do. And if you weren’t able to make it to this event, I hope it gives you exactly what you need.

You know, as women, we have all sorts of incredible talents and our ability to lead is baked into who we are. But we dismiss a lot of feminine attributes of feminine energy as not necessarily being strong enough, powerful enough to be leadership material. And I think these are all lies. And so this particular recording is very specific to help you see how even though you are apt to want to lead with your masculine traits, there’s a reason why that’s true. And I want to give you an alternative perspective. You get to be whoever you want. And I hope that this conversation just adds more to your palette, just gives you more options. Because leading your business, listen, we all need all the tools we can get in that little quiver of hours. So, tune in, and let’s go!

And we are going to get started today talking about The Leadership is Feminine Formula. I want to talk to you as we—just for kicking this off a little bit about what we’re doing, why we’re doing it, how was this all going to go, because we’ll be able to spend the next five days together to give you a little ground rules and how we’re going to interact with each other. My goal over the next five days is to give you little couple nuggets every day to kind of make your brain go, “Oh, that’s interesting.” And also, I’d like to talk to a few of you every day, I’d like to coach you, advise you, listen to some of the challenges that you’re having leading your team, and help you find solutions to address those this week, right away.

One of the things that I know, after working with leaders for well over 27 years, is that most of the challenges that we’re facing with our teams, do not require massive, huge action and change. They require a slight shift in the way that you’re thinking about a problem. And I’m going to be sharing with you examples and ideas as we go throughout the next five days. So whether you decide to volunteer and get coached or not, I know you’re still going to get tremendous value by being here, listening to what I have to share, and then also listening to your fellow female entrepreneurs and founders to listen to what they’re working through, also.

So first of all, I want to thank you for being here. It is such an honor to have this time with you. I know how busy you are. It’s Monday morning. Who plans anything for Monday morning? I do. I think it’s a great way to start off the week. I also know that this is a big deal for you to invest in yourself. And so I just also want to congratulate you on taking some time to invest in who you are as a woman and as a leader. I think women are the answer to so much of what’s going on in the world today: the way that we think about things the way that we solve problems. But I also know that so many women are really tapped, are really tired, are really working through a lot of different challenges, especially after the last several years that we’ve had.

So, I’m going to go ahead and just tell you a little bit about who I am if you’re not familiar with who is Kris Plachy. I am Kris Plachy. I am the creator of the “How to CEO” program for female entrepreneurs. I am the founder of Leadership Coach, LLC. I’ve been running my own business now for over 10 years. And my primary focus, my entire career has been in leadership and management and coaching. So, before I started my own business, I was running my own teams. I worked at a startup company for well over 17 years. And I lead and manage teams anywhere from 14 people to 300 people, and I had profit, or I had revenue lines that were 12 million to upwards of 50 million.

So, I’ve dealt with honestly, almost any kind of employee challenge that I think you could think of, so nothing you guys bring me, surprises me or scares me. People are really interesting. And I have this sort of formulaic way of solving, helping my clients solve leadership issues, issues with the team. So, the work that my team and I do is quite exclusive and simple. We help female founders learn how to lead and manage their teams. We don’t teach you how to market, we don’t teach you how to get more clients, we don’t teach you how to write, you know, all of your narratives for how to sell your products. We don’t teach you sales skills.

We teach you how to think about: how do I build a successful team? How do I deal with someone on the team that’s not performing? How do I hold people accountable? How do I really do those pieces and parts that nobody likes to talk about, but are honestly where the break screech if you don’t get it figured out? If you don’t figure out how to manage people, you can’t grow your business. If you haven’t hit that wall yet, you know what I’m talking about. And at every threshold, right, the first seven figures, then we get to 5 million, then we get to 15 million, we see different challenges as the team grows and the level of responsibility changes in the team.

And so this kind of work is critical to you. And here’s what I think is really, really important that you hear me say, I don’t know that we can teach people how to be leaders, but I know you can learn how to be leaders. And what I mean by that is that it’s not a book smart skill. Leadership isn’t something you read, and then become, it’s something you learn through practical, real application. It’s what I did with a client this morning from a Voxer call, right? Where she has somebody on the team who’s not coming to their morning huddles. She’d say, like, “How do I deal with this? How do I deal with someone who on the team isn’t showing up, but she’s integral to the team?” It’s real application. I gave her several ideas to try. That’s how we learn. And everyone can learn.

So, Leadership is Feminine is the name of my podcast. If you’re not a listener, I encourage you to go and check that out this week. And the reason that it’s so critical for me to highlight that leadership is feminine is not because I believe that men aren’t capable leaders. And it’s not because I want to berate, and insult men, I have no interest in that. I love men. I’ve been married 26 years. I have two sons. I love men. I think men are amazing. I think men as leaders can be tremendously amazing. I honestly think the best leaders who are men have tapped to their feminine leadership skill.

What I’m doing this work for is not to minimize that, but to highlight you, to show you that all those assets that you have, that I believe you have been told make you weak, emotional, too soft to lead, are the actual assets that will help you thrive. I want you to be able to be all of you, as a woman who needs a business and not feel like you’re an imposter in your own business. I want you to step into your voice not adopt someone else’s. So if that’s you, if you’re a female founder, and you’re kind of sitting in this space, like, “Wait, I am running into walls, and I feel uncomfortable all the time and I’m not being able to express myself the way that I want to because I’m watching all these other people leaving their businesses to make them do it the way I want to do it or I feel comfortable doing it.” That’s what this is about. How do we help you find your voice so we talk panic and real consistent so that you’re building the business that you want to build. I hope that resonates.

All right. So, we’ve talked a little bit about who I am. Who were you? You’re a female entrepreneur, and you’re a female founder, there is a unique ness to women who start their own businesses. And in summary, this is what I would say: women who start their own businesses do so because the majority of you, you get a mission or a purpose on your heart. Something touches you that says, “Yeah, I want to do that in the world.” So you’re very centered on that goal, whatever that is, that fix, that solve, that service that you want to put in the world, it’s a very, very dear thing to you.

And the majority of female founders, the majority of the ones that I’ve ever worked with, have never actually had any management training. Because the majority of the training that is out there for entrepreneurs is how to build a business and how to generate revenue and how to market and how to get clients. It’s not how to build a team. But the dream’s in the team, love. How are you going to expand this thing if you can’t exponentially get work done? You can’t do it all. I know you’ve figured that part out, but you’re probably really frustrated that other people are doing what you want, right? So how do we bridge that gap?

So that’s a unique person who comes into the How to CEO program. She is a woman committed to a mission and a purpose. And she sees what she’s capable of. She sees what her business is capable of. But she can’t see how to get there with this motley bunch. she has hired, or the people she hasn’t hired yet. And where does she find them? And how can she find them? She can’t seem to hire anybody. That’s another issue we’re having right now.

So, I know that we want to raise the level of competence of women who are running their own companies. And so that is the goal for this next five days, is to give you insights, perspectives, tools, and knowledge that helps you up-level who you are. So the way this is going to work. If you have questions as we go, you can post them in the Q&A. I may ask you a question, and I would love for you to post your response in the Q&A. And then as we get to a little bit further in the call, I would like to have open conversations with a couple of you.

So if you are so willing, the way that that will work is you will post your question in the Q&A. So, let’s say that you’re currently trying to figure out what to do with someone who’s been in your team, on your team for the last 10 years, they started with you. And all of a sudden, the breaks have gone on and they’re not performing anymore. Or maybe you’ve been searching and searching and you haven’t been able to hire someone. Or maybe you wake up every day and you don’t know if you want to keep this business because it’s so hard to run. Whatever that might be for you, I want you to post that question in Q&A. And then I will come and get you and we’ll turn you into a presenter. If you haven’t been on a zoom call like that before, I will be able to see you and so will everybody else. So, I want to always make sure everybody knows what we’re doing if you volunteer to be coached. If we don’t have any volunteers for the day, that’s fine. But that usually doesn’t happen. Don’t know why you wouldn’t. It’s a tremendous opportunity to get an answer to a question that I’m sure you’ve been stewing on, which is why you’re here.

Okay, so my first question for you all, as we start this journey together is to first think about the first part of our formula. And the first part of the formula for Leadership is Feminine is really how you think about yourself. One of the very first pieces that we teach in How to CEO is a module called CEO Mindset. And there are different mindsets that we have to learn how to step into as our business grows. Because the truth is you can’t build a business beyond your own thinking. So, if your thoughts are: “Hi my name is Joyce, and I run a business out of my garage, and I don’t really know what the hell I’m doing.” It will be hard to expand your business beyond the way that you’re currently thinking about yourself and your company.

So, when we make that transition from someone with an idea, who’s just not all of a sudden making money doing it, to then kind of like, “Okay, I think the company,” to then ultimately starting to think about yourself as the CEO, that’s a journey. But what we have to first recognize is what are we tell ourselves about what a leader is? When you look at the world or when you’re having a conversation in your own brain, what are the qualities that you see that you say, yes, that person is a leader? What have you been taught? Leadership looks like we have all been insidiously taught. And I mean that not with intention; we’ve just been taught by watching people, what leadership looks like. Leaders are people who are in front, they’re people who are powerful. What do those people look like? What are their qualities and characteristics?

If you want to post some of your answers in the Q&A, I would certainly love to know what your thoughts are. What do you think when you think someone is a leader? We can go everywhere from, yeah, “Domineering, powerful, collaborative, communicative, direct, strong, decisive, strong and stable, confident.” Yeah, these are good, you guys, keep them coming, right? They’re an example. “They’re charismatic, anticipatory, great listener, capable of making decisions, visionary.” All of these are true. And so much more. I love these. “Leaders are able to separate their emotions from business decisions. They motivate people.” Oh, my goodness. So good, you guys. Siri, oh, my God, there’s a name for the fast. Hi, Love. “Resonate with integrity.”

These are all so good. So then what we have to do is think about, okay, if these are the qualities of a leader that we’ve been raised with, that this is the first thing that you came up with, right? Now, one of two reasons will be the answer. The first one is that these are things that you admire in other people and you don’t feel like you possess. Or these are things you admire, and you believe you possess. But when you think about yourself as a leader, how do you compare to what you believe leadership looks like? Is there alignment there? Is it disparate? Is it different? Well, that’s what leadership looks like, but this is what I am. What is it that you tell yourself? Because there’s a lot of people who think, “Yeah, I own the company, but I don’t really know if I think about myself as a leader.” What is that answer for you? I’m curious. When you think about yourself, as the founder, owner of what you do in the world, do you align or not? And if not, where’s the gap?

The question I think that’s really powerful to ask yourself is: what do you believe you need to change in order to be better as a woman who leads for business? What is that one thing that you have on repeat that you say if I could just be this? If I could just do this? If I could just say this, things would be easier, things wouldn’t be so hard, things would be better. I would love to know what that is that you say to yourself. Will you share with me some of those, some of the things that you process in your mind that you wish you could be better at?

I’ve had so many clients say to me, “I just wish I could have difficult conversations. I just wish I could address issues when I see them. I just wish I didn’t worry so much about people liking me. I just wish I didn’t worry about people getting sad.” I see your point here about an assistant. You’re falling further and further behind in the way of finances. Yep. This is so interesting. Yeah, not having a good assistant is a big issue. If you’re making more than $100,000 a year, you should have an assistant. And that’s even true for those of you who are on this call who don’t own a company. And I know there’s a couple of you on here. “I wish I had followed through. I wish I was more courageous. I wish I had the ability to hold people accountable and set clear expectations. If I was just clean and organized, math-minded, could see more clearly this certain way that doesn’t exist.” Yeah. “If I could just get more done. If I didn’t have to do this alone.” You don’t, Love.

“I wish I could stop being overwhelmed and confused about prioritizing tasks, trusting people to work as hard as I do. Deal with confrontation better. I wish I had another me.” So what I would suggest you do with that is asked why? What is the other me going to do? We’ve got to get really clear about that. “I just wish I could let go of others’ opinions and reactions and do what’s best for my firm. I would like to know more about how to deal with difficult people. I definitely need an assistant.” Yes, you do. Everybody does. “I have to be more resilient around perceived rejection.” Yes.

You know, that’s something that we’ll talk about as the week progresses. I know it will come up. But I think it’s important that we address this right now. Andthere are very innate needs that we have as human beings. If we take ourselves out of the world that we are in today, and you just…If you can get down and distill yourself into this being, right? Here you are, you are a human being. And there was a time where we lived in caves. There was a time where we didn’t have all this, the trappings of this world. We were just people, a people who needed to find food and water and make babies—scared of what it was. And what we know of that time is if you were ostracized from your clan, your tribe, your pack,

your world, whatever, right? Whatever we want to call that. You would die. Because you wouldn’t have access to food, water, fire and procreation, you would die. And so it isn’t abnormal for you to feel pain when people reject you or don’t agree with you, it is okay to feel that. It actually is a superpower to feel things at that level. You just need to learn how to use it, that’s all! My guess is at least 80% of my clients would pass as highly sensitive people. If you don’t know what that is, it’s a thing, you can go research it. Or we could use the word empaths. And what I’m saying about that means that you have the ability to actually feel things other people are feeling. I’m not going to take us too far off, because we will talk about this as we go forward. But I want to honor your comments because I think so many other people feel that.

“I’m not good with holding people accountable.” There’s a reason why. And my guess is the reason why is it’s uncomfortable for you and for them. “I wish I could articulate a clear vision that united and motivated the team. If I could just be confident with my decisions and actions, I wish I didn’t believe others were more qualified.” Nobody will ever be more qualified than you to talk about, share, and advocate your vision. “I want to shift away from work and spend more time on development.” So good, not more work on instead of in, right. So many great answers here.

So, when we have this belief that leadership looks like this, but we look like this, we’re already separate. And I think that it’s a fair thing to understand that for centuries, women have been taught that women don’t lead, men lead. Women tend, women nurture, women support. Now that’s not bad. It’s just the way that it’s been. And so as we stand here today with 270 plus million women running their own businesses across the world, we can understand why we have our own internal backlash to our role, and the world is having some backlash to so many women stepping up and finding their voice in leadership. And that’s not going to change.

And there are qualities that women bring as feminine leaders, that the world today needs more of: more collaboration, more kindness, more love, more nurture, more tending. But what we have to be careful of is when we overuse our feminine qualities, we don’t hold boundaries, which didn’t come up in this list that you all made, that was beautiful. And yet, it’s usually one of the biggest ones, which is boundaries. How many of you were interrupted all day? How many of you say that something’s going to happen if something doesn’t happen, and then you don’t follow through? How many of you will allow for tremendous amounts of interruptions in your thought process? How many of you were making up for the mistakes of your employees, instead of holding them accountable? So we take nurture, tending support too far. Yeah. This isn’t a family that you’re running; this company, it requires a different voice, one that I know that you have.

So, as we think about being women and being feminine, right? There are women who are have a lot of masculine energy and masculine traits. And there are men who have a lot of feminine energy and feminine traits. There isn’t a bad or good one. It’s that the feminine traits that you have are actually assets, not detriments, which is what I know. We’ve been taught, okay? So that’s where we’re parking this bus. And that’s what we’re going to address, I know that every weakness that you have shared here, also has a superpower attached to it.

So when you struggle with follow through, part of the reason that you’re struggling with that is because you care deeply, you want to build strong bonds. You also were a multitasker, which we could come all the way back to this hunter-gatherer way that we’ve all been functioning. Of course, women multitask. We’ve been multitasking, since there were women. You just have more tasks on that multi, or multis on your task list. I don’t know how we would say that. That’s the truth.

So I’m going to spend the next half an hour talking with you specifically through some of your challenges. The only way that you will move this needle is by addressing this head on. Just like I said at the top of this call, we cannot necessarily teach. So what I know it to be true is I’ve been teaching and facilitating for—it feels like 100 years. And I know I can put on a really good show, y’all. I’m incredibly entertaining. I know that I can give you so many examples and I can share with you so many circumstances and I can make light of it and we can have a great time. But where you’re going to get movement from this free pass is through your own story; not the ones I share.

And that’s what we do in our How to CEO program is we take the lessons and the tools and the practices and we wrap them around you. You’re the content, love. The way that you actually change how you lead a team is like I said at the top of the call, it’s just a shift. We’re talking miracles here. Just a few insights, a few try-this, a few let’s think about that differently. And we get you there. But I can’t help you, unless you give me your content.

So, this morning, when I was talking with my client, and she was talking about having someone who isn’t coming to meetings, her reaction is like what most of our reactions are, is to use her masculine energy to address it. So, her first reaction was to say, I want her to come, I’m going to tell her to come, it’s mandatory. Now what we know through all—think about all of the indoctrination that you’ve had as a woman and as a young person as you grew up. Education system built on masculine principles, force, discipline, punishment, consequences, right? You have to do this. There’s no collaboration when it comes to school. You go. Rules, right?

So, when someone doesn’t follow a rule, our natural inclination is to say, “You’re not following the rule. I’m going to force you to follow it.” But see women know internally so many women who really want to leverage their feminine traits, they know that doesn’t feel right. And they also know that doesn’t create sustainable engagement, that doesn’t invite your heart and mind to be with me, if I force you to do it. I know you know that. But it’s simple, right? Just, “If you don’t have to live meetings, I’m going to fire you.” I know you don’t want to say that, and I don’t want you think that. But that’s natural that that’s your first reaction.

So, what I suggested to her was the opposite. I said, “Let’s just think about this for a second. This is somebody who’s a leader in your team. She doesn’t have a leadership role, but she’s been around a long time. She’s a high performer, she’s already got leadership status on your team. So if you force her to come, and she’s not happy about being there, that’s actually going to be toxic. So how about instead, you tell her, ‘Hey, your leader on this team, your absence is noticed. It’s affecting the team that you’re not here. And I understand that you don’t necessarily feel like these meetings are valuable, so why don’t we talk about how we could make them more valuable? I’d love your input here. How can we do that together?”

Now, if she still resists, we’ll address that. But what about that approach? Very different, and maybe much more successful, right? Okay, so see some of you, “I scheduled staff meetings and a few employees didn’t come.” So there we go. Actually, that’s so interesting, right? I just addressed that a little bit. So, we have to decide—the first thing when you have meetings and people don’t come there’s a breakdown, right? There’s a breakdown in expectation, because people have to come to meetings. If they don’t come to meetings, we need to find out why.

And sometimes the truth is, our meetings are awful. They’re not useful. They’re a waste of time. And you have to tell yourself the truth. Is that true? Are there things being decided at the meetings that if they’re not there, they’re missing out? Or does it not matter? It’s, what is the general culture in your business about that? And how do we encourage and entice or engage them to participate in a way that is actually about lifting them up and not force? So I would invite you to consider those as options. If you want to post again, you can.

“I’m getting that I use this masculine energy to get myself to do things.” Yes, that’s very true. A lot of us do that. Now, I want to emphasize that I don’t think that’s bad. I just don’t know that that’s you being you. And what if you could be more effective, right? Because in my experience, I’m highly intuitive. I’m very, very sensitive. I’m an empath. All those things are true for me. I’ve learned all these masculine approaches. And I will be honest with you, every now and then I have to use it. But when I do, it is so out of alignment for me, that if I had to lead that way all day, I would suffer.

And the truth is: the very first boss I had was a woman, and she was cruel, punishing, insulting, abused her power meanly. And I thought for years, if that’s what leadership looks like, I want none of it. I don’t want anything to do with that ever in my life. And so, I avoided being a leader for a very long time, because I thought that’s how you had to be, until I realized I actually worked for a man who led with his female, his feminine leadership traits. And I thought, “Oh, he sounds like how I want to sound.” And I learned from him.

You know, this interesting, just as a side note, and then Caitlin, I’m coming for you. I see you and you didn’t tell me you’re not interested in coming on, so I’m coming for you. So while I do that, I’ll see if I can make you a participant.

One of the things that I find really, really fascinating about this particular free event that I’ve done is that I did ads and stuff on Facebook, and I knew I’d get some backlash for calling it Leadership is Feminine and boys have had a good run, a lot of copy. Do you know the only people who chastised me in the end were women, for emasculating men. This is the problem. We have a problem, people.

Well, that’s the end of that. If you want to hear more and get some more exposure to live calls with me and actually hear the coaching that I do when I have live calls, you first of all have to come to a live call and second of all, I’ve just recommend you join How to CEO. Why are you not here? Today, this call is dropping on the day that How to CEO will close. And we will not be reopening it for several months. So, if you need to start January, 2023, with a clean slate, figuring out to do with that team, getting things started, getting things in place, moving things along, making the changes you know you needed to change. Stop not starting. Start.

In 12 weeks, listen to me. I know in two weeks, in three weeks, sometimes just in one call, we can resolve this thing. Love, whatever it is that’s going on on your team that has you not sleeping, not thinking straight, feeling frustrated, wondering if you should just quit, should you just sell the damn thing? Should you just burn it down? I know the pain that people get into here. And if you’re just getting going and you’re starting to crank the revenue, and you’re like, “Holy smokes, I’m going to hire other people.” Do this now so you don’t end up like that CEO five years from now, who wishes she invested in herself to develop her leadership chops. Come on. We all have it. Everybody’s capable. But you have to invest in yourself. You’re not supposed to be naturally good at this.

You matter, you are worth it. It’s $5,000. I know that you have spent that money on so many other things. If you’re running a company. You will never convince me that you are not worth that investment. Your first, Mama, let’s go. Today’s your last day. Are you coming? Go to www.krisplachy.com/CEO. Let’s go!

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