Therapist and Coach, Contour Holistic Community
What makes a good leader?
My experience as the founder and chair of a Disability Arts organisation (creatovate - see DIAL Dec/Jan 07), a trained Disability Student Advisor and currently a life coach, Hypnotherpist, NLP student and complimentary therapy practitioner has raised a particular skill set.
Assertive yet Approachable personality
Energetic Optimism (it is infectious)
Positive Outlook - challenges NOT problems
Clear Unwavering Vision
Is leadership different for disabled people?
After acquiring a Disability I have identified the obstacles to my own progress. The main difficulty I face is the "invisible" nature of my impairments. I have to either "compete" without any alterations (in mobility access, sensory access etc.), or explain my impairment and have inappropriate solutions and "victim" responses to a state of health that I am perfectly happy with. In short, I find it difficult to keep up to the same physical and mental rate of competence without any adjustments, but I find the adjustments often are the barriers - so say nothing and look a bit clumsy! Attitudes are my barriers!
Do disabled people experience barriers to leadership that non disabled people don’t experience?
I am aware that the whole concept of "diversity" embraces ALL marginalised people and identifies and removes the barriers to progress. However, I feel the barriers of attitude which exist between the able bodied and disabled often paint disability as "not as good", or "unfortunate"... As an invisibly disabled individual I have the choice of disclosure, this puts me at a disadvantage in one way or the other.