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Why supporting women leaders and shepreneurs?

I often receive feedback from people questioning why supporting more women than men in my activities.

First of all, I have never opposed them and believe that we need both men and women in teams as we have complementary energy and ways of thinking.


I had the opportunity to work in male environments, for more than 10 years in cocoa sustainability where women were not really represented. While participating to international conferences and travelling to cocoa producing area, we were very little women to take part. A special applause to the group Women in Cocoa and Chocolate created in 2018 to rebalance that.

After that I had the chance to work in a “male dominant” executive committee as HR Director and experienced differences in ways of collaborating, taking decisions or relating with the team. It was very insightful for me to live this as It gave me the opportunity to work on my feminine/masculine energy within myself.

Yin Yang Energy

As you may know or not, there are two types of energy inside each being. We tend to categorize women as more yin, intuitive, welcoming, caring, watery if we take the metaphors of the 4 elements – and men more yang, action driven, powerful, fiery.

The reality is that we all have these two energies within us. No opposition needed. No shame to feel them.

“ Vulnerability is the birth place of innovation, creativity and change” Brené Brown

Compassionate leadership

I believe in a compassionate leadership where each leader learns to contact the right energy and/or rebalance it when needed.

I believe that women do not need to bark to be heard by men or to fight against other women for their promotion.

I believe that men can show their vulnerability at work and that it is not going to make them weaker leader.

I believe in a leadership where action can be combined to compassion: attending, empathizing, understanding, helping. Compassion does not weaken leadership. It makes it stronger.

“ Leadership is about empathy. It is about the ability to relate to, and connect with people for the purpose of inspiring and empowering their lives” Oprah Winfrey

I have to share with you that when I started as leadership coach and trainer, I wanted to focus on men leaders and bring these feminine qualities to their management, relations, ways of leading. I still believe it’s much needed. I had the impression that it was a mountain to climb. It is not a secret that welcoming emotions and shadows takes courage and even if Brené Brown is showcasing and researching around the power of vulnerability since 2010, it’s not the most attractive and sexiest subject to tackle.

Being a committed woman

At some point in my life, I had a transition period where I was surrounded by a lot of women, from different backgrounds. Not necessarily feminists, but all very committed.

It was enlightening and nourishing for my being that had spent years living with a more male energy, fighting for more social justice. This imbalance of energy brought me to a burnout in 2017. The “fight mode” was my autopilot, feeding my values of courage and integrity. I was clearly over-committed.

So, when I met feminist activists, I was put off. No more battle please. I wanted bridges. I wanted flow.

“Activism is the practice of challenging an issue, by challenging those in power” Anjali Appadurai

I never considered myself as an activist so far. I had this image that activism was to rally people in the streets or being on strike. In fact, activism can take different form and I can say today that I’m a kind of change agent, focused on educating and promoting alternatives and paradigm shift.

It’s not radical to be a feminist

In the eyes of the law, men and women have equal rights and status in the western world. However, there are still inequalities, perceptions, ways and norms of society that are not putting women on equality to men.

It is mainly hidden in our words, expressions, postures. Consciously or not, men and women are sabotaging and suppressing power to women.

The power phrase campaign from European Activism Incubator highlights this very well. Have a look at the article below and the campaign on Instagram #PowerPhrase

Rachel Peters in her last article explain very well: « studies show that unconscious bias is ripe at work. Surely, we are all familiar with bossy. Surely, we all have heard unlikeable. And, surely, aggressive is more than overused when referring to women, particularly in a professional context »

We must listen to each other and hear the voices of everyone. Language is the instrument of domination but also liberation said Angela Carter (English novelist, short story writer, poet, and journalist).

Your uplifting accomplice

I am fed up with these statistics:

I don’t even talk about all the limiting beliefs women carry when they want to change career path or climb the latter to executive positions. Too many women suffer from impostor syndrome and fears (the main one being of not succeeding). It seems that there is lack of self-esteem and self-trust at the heart of women history that prevent them to create and live the life they want fully aligned with their dreams.

I experienced it myself and now support women by reframing these beliefs and healing these wounds, rooted in generations of oppressed women before us.

I’m using for that a combination of coaching tools, nonviolent communication and emotional freedom technique, to explore their unconscious brain and deprogram anything that is an obstacle to their empowerment!

I support women who want to:

  • liberate their mind
  • reset their energy and quit their automatic mode.
  • reconnect to their emotions in a safe way.
  • get rid of their impostor syndrome once and for all
  • build up their self-trust and develop their assertiveness

That is why I have chosen to support women and shepreneurs in their leadership journey. Men, be welcome to join the journey if it resonate with you.


For more insights

  • TEDx – the power of vulnerability Brené Brown

  • TEDx – What is activism? Anjali Appadurai

  • Powerphrase – European Activism Incubator

Cet article comporte 1 commentaire

  1. Wonderful article, Marie-Amélie!

    Understanding that feminism is not radical through exploring the unconscious is such an important step for women (and all people) to take in their leadership journey. Thank you, that’s exactly what #PowerPhrase is about!

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