Not for president, although if Oprah ran for office she’d get my vote for that too.
When starting this inspiring leader’s series, Oprah immediately came to mind as one of the world’s most inspiring leaders. I was going to say one of the most inspiring women leaders, but she’s an incredible leader, period. No distinction needed.
Oprah’s become such a familiar household figure, she feels like that old friend you crash on the sofa with for feel-good stories and advice. Oprah – she doesn’t know us and yet we’re on a first name basis. How many other public figures, who don’t parade on stage in hot pants, do you know solely by first name? That’s power.
As one of the women who make up less than 2% of the world’s billionaires, Oprah Winfrey is the walking definition of the American dream as she worked her way up from farm-town poverty, to claiming her self-made throne of resounding influence and a growing production and publishing empire. How big is this woman’s influence? During the 2008 presidential election, Oprah’s endorsement of Barack Obamas was said to have brought Obama at least one million votes. That’s enough influence to determine who and which party will take the most powerful political position in the world.
Credited with creating “intimate confessional form of media communication” Oprah’s spearheading of emotional transparency, breaking taboos and social stigmas to address issues of race, abuse, depression and sexuality makes her my (and every other person who ever felt marginalised by society) personal hero.
Simply, as an individual who earned it all, I admire Oprah’s ability to gain influence, create social change and financial stability (if you can call being a billionaire financial stability!) through vulnerability, connection and an intrinsic type of empathy. She embraces her story, her history of trauma, sexual abuse and struggle with relationships and self-image to identify with people authentically, with humility and generosity.
It takes absolute courage to voice honest opinions and lead millions of people, at the risk of failure and public ridicule. And despite overwhelming success, Oprah remains true to her values and as a continued supporter of the underdog. But most admirably, is Oprah’s heartfelt communication, willingness to admit mistakes and share her lessons – and bring everyone with her in the process. A person who looks after the community likes she looks after herself. A lady who just GETS IT. What can I say, I love Oprah.
This post was first published on Executive Lifestyle – http://www.executivelifestyle.sg/why-oprah-winfrey-gets-my-vote/