Emanuela Palazzani, is the CEO and Strategic Planner of T-Immobil, a real estate business, and has received many prestigious awards for her commitment towards the advancement of women in leadership positions. She is also the coordinator of the new WIL Italy chapter.
WIL Europe: You have received several awards for your contributions to the advancement of women. According to you, why is it important to invest in this issue?
Emanuela Palazzani (EP): One of the most common aspects of leadership is the need for pursuit. Great women are never satisfied with traditional practices, static thinking, conventional wisdom, or mediocre performance. Investing in this issue means underscoring that women who want to advance are simply uncomfortable with anything that embraces the status quo. This attitude of stagnation is what we need to change.
WIL: Talking about Women in Leadership: what is your personal checklist for innovative and inspiring leadership?
EP: The principles of my checklist, I believe, should be applicable to most leaders and their endeavors, and under most circumstances:
A) Articulate a Vision. Formulate a clear and persuasive vision and communicate it convincingly.
B) Think and act strategically. Set forth a pragmatic strategy for achieving that vision, both short– and long-term, and ensure that it is widely understood. Consider all the players and anticipate reactions and resistance before they manifest.
C) Honor the room. Frequently express your confidence in and support for those who work with and for you.
D) Take charge. Embrace a tendency to take action, to take responsibility even if it is not formally delegated, particularly if you are well positioned to make a difference.
WIL: How could an Emerging Leader increase her influence?
EP: In order to be an effective influencer, one needs both substance and style. Without a solid foundation of credibility, even the most interpersonally adept leaders will fall short.
WIL: During the most recent WIL Biannual Meeting in Rome, the WIL Italy chapter was launched . Could you tell us more about this project?
EP: Thanks to the WIL President’s and the board members’ vision, WIL Italy is now a reality. Our project is to create a network of high profile candidates in Italy who can be selected as new WIL Europe members. Moreover, we shall provide support in organizing WIL Europe events, seminars and initiatives in Italy. By participating as speakers or moderators at conferences, we shall also increase WIL Europe’s visibility.
WIL: Will WIL Italy also act as a networking opportunity for excellent Italian women living in other European countries?
EP: Yes, we will also establish contacts and organize events to present successful Italian women living in other countries. They are valuable role models that we are proud of, and the time is right to establish strong partnership with them.
WIL: The Italian government has recently appointed seven women as ministers, a first in Italian politics. What do you think could this signal to the Italian people and, above all, to Italian women?
EP: By announcing this new team, the Prime Minister established the importance of the combination of passion with pragmatism, and that power must be exercised responsibly.