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Quiet leadership is not silence

2 min. read

· Leadership

Quiet and silent leadership are not the same thing. What is the difference? Quiet leaders choose strategically when and how to engage. Their presence or position is known. Silent leaders are insidious. They know their position should be stated but intentionally choose not to do so. Silence is still speaking.

Chimmamanda Ngozi Adichie, author and icon, is one of the most important women in history. While I discovered her through Half of a yellow sun (highly recommend), others may know her through Americanah, Dear Ijeawal or heard her Ted Talk Single Story.

Outside of her art or a scheduled appearance, we do not hear from Chimmamanda. She is quiet. However, we know where she stands.

Warren Buffet the Oracle of Omaha is one of the quietest leaders the world has come to know. Buffet admittedly shared how he had the "business acumen but not the business personality". He attended seminars to develop skills he thought was lacking.

Today, when Warren Buffet speaks the world listens. You will notice that like a number of quiet leaders Buffets positions are known and well documented but he is not loud. Buffet uses his activist voice and capital to make very clear where he stands. Literally putting his money where his mouth is.

Business Leaders, does your team know where you stand? Do your consumers? Investors?

2020 has shown all of us the compound

effect of silent leadership.​​

-Sabrina Clarke-Okwubanego

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