Not waiting for advice
Q: With Laura Bush in the news with her new memoir and Michelle Obama pushing her plan to fight childhood obesity, what advice would you offer to those who find themselves in such ambiguously defined leadership roles? Can a First Lady be a leader in her own right?
Eleanor Roosevelt's work on the Universal Declaration of Human Rights proved that first ladies could be leaders in their own right. Mrs. Roosevelt was without doubt the most influential member of the UN's Commission on Human Rights.
I don't think Michelle Obama is waiting for any advice on how to "lead" her fight against childhood obesity. And I wouldn't presume to give her any. But as a body-language coach, I would encourage her to do more of what she already does: hold her shoulders back, keep her head high, make positive eye contact, widen her stance, keep her gestures at waist level, articulate clearly, and express both verbally and nonverbally the passion she feels for this cause. If she does so, she will continue to attract followers. And isn't that the definition of a leader?
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