Helping Leaders Achieve Sustainability

Archive for the ‘Women in Leadership’ Category

Exercise self-care during the holidays

We are almost in holiday season and everyone is ready to let their guards down be in a festive mood.

2016 was a very good year for me as I go to travel and learn to invest in my business and myself and took the time to rekindle my passion and purpose in life.

If I were to ask you a reflective question……….how was 2016 for you?

Just a little bit about myself – my name is Pam Yako and I am a leadership coach for women leaders who are either in a professional/management role or running their own businesses. I journey with these women from a place of feeling overwhelmed to a happy place where feel they attune with who they are.

I do this, as I believe that women have a special role to play in society and the economy and this role needs to be recognised, supported and nurtured.

Talking about nurturing I would like to explore 5 ways we as women leaders can nurture ourselves. These are:

  • Have more me time – this means spending quality time with ourselves in order to recharge and rejuvenate ourselves. We need this energy in order to fulfill our role in society.
  • Taking care of our physical wellbeing – this means taking care of our bodies through massages, going on reflective walks, running, manicure,
  • Getting a connection with our souls – ensuring that we take care of our souls by engaging in spiritually uplifting activities like meditating, praying or just be in front of the Devine being;
  • Finding support for our leadership journey – this means finding your own support club or network (could be online as you can connect from anywhere in the world); finding a coach, mentor or anybody who can be your support base for your dreams and aspirations;
  • Keeping in touch with our emotions and being grateful – this means were need to journal the good days, the discoveries, the nice activities that you will be undertaking and writing how do these make you feel; the time spent with family, the new recipes you have tried and what response you go from these.

This is all meant to put you in good stead for 2017 so that you approach the New Year with the necessary vigour, excitement and energy befitting of a goddess.

Chat soon about planning for an awesome and attuned year.


p.s. Sign up for my newsletter on



Birthday…new beginnings

October is my birthday month and I often use the time to reflect on my journey and what I had planned for the year and what I have accomplished. This year was a good year as most of the things I set for myself were done…yippee!!!! I also took the time to go to Tuscany in Italy where I attended a 7 day Eat Pray Learn Retreat (hosted by Carl Brooks – and thereafter took four days just visiting and exploring Tuscany on my own.

There is nothing as liberating than going on your own to a foreign country where you do not really know anybody, don’t speak the language and you just leave your home and your comfort zone and explore the world and give yourself permission to go out there as a citizen of the world and have fun. Fun I had – I explored Tuscany, enjoyed the food (of course with the vino) and learnt a lot about myself on who I am and what I am about. Often times we are caught in the mode of doing things – chasing deadlines – playing our roles and we forget about spending time with ourselves and have deep conversations with oneself whilst ensuring that you take care of your body, mind and your soul.

On my birthday I woke up and did some morning stretches and a few yoga poses that I could remember and then took out my journal and just answered the following questions:

  • How do I feel about my life at the present moment?
  • What things I am proud of?
  • What are the things I will stop doing?
  • How do I fulfill my purpose in life?
  • How do I show up differently in the world?

I was quite amazed about what I have achieved to date and of course also recognising how much I was not spending time with myself and looking after the God given soul and in essence I took three main resolutions – I am going to love and nurture myself more, I will let go of my self doubt and fear and pursue my purpose in life and finally I will nurture and build all the personal relationships that matter to me and unashamedly do so.

Well that is my journey moving forward – and did I need to go to Italy to take these decisions maybe not however the trip gave me the impetus and in the sanctuary of nature and foreign land I could do this. Now I need to be true to myself and honour the promises I made to myself. I owe to me as more than anything I realise that “I matter”.

With regard to the retreat I learnt a lot about myself as an entrepreneur (yes I said it – up until this month I have not referred to myself as an entrepreneur despite the fact that I have been running my business for 6 years) and the limiting beliefs and how my past experiences have actually held me back – more about that in future blogs – for now I am happy and ready for the new beginnings and excited about taking the quantum leap to explore my dreams, love and honour myself and nurture relationships that matter.

Expect more from me as I share my journey and in the process pursue my passion.


Pam Yako

Leadership Coach

‘Helping women leaders to be attuned and find their inner goddess’

+27 12 998 7337 or +27 82 550 5225


p.s. please feel free to contact me if you wanna learn more about this just to chat or sign up for my newsletter at

Leading today

Despite South Africa’s efforts in addressing women’s empowerment, they still remain under-represented in the formal economy, and more so in formal leadership positions.   It should also be acknowledged that in the last 20 years of our democratic dispensation, there has been marked change in women representation in formal structures and this is an undisputed fact and the statistics continue to improve.

Leadership can be described as a process of influence which one person can enlist the aid and support of others in the accomplishment of a common task.  John Maxwell describes,  “a leader is one who knows the way, goes the way and shows the way” and many women continue to play their role in ensuring that we improve our approaches and practices.

Whilst genuine strides have been made the sad reality of our society still pertains.  Whilst women occupy these formal positions there still exists gender stereotypes.  Engaging in the boardroom and leading change and organisations is still not seen as a woman’s role.  INSEAD (business school) identifies the existence of ‘second generation’ of gender bias.  They describe this as the powerful and yet often invisible barriers to women’s advancement that arise from societal stereotypes and sometime cultural practices.

Whilst women occupy these positions there are built in barriers that work against them and whose source is the gender stereotypes.  In some cases, this can lead to underrepresentation and lack of confidence in some women leaders.  Gender stereotypes can become a powerful yet invisible threat to women leaders and the organisations in which they work or lead. Companies focus more on increasing the number of women in their workforce to meet the gender quotas set by governments but they fail to recognize the business imperative, i.e. the potential contribution of women leaders to the improvements of the organizational performance and profitability.  When women eventually make it to the top, their performance goes through additional scrutiny and is more likely to be criticized than men. The impact of this is that women have to work extra harder to prove their competence.

One prevalent second generation gender bias is that those women who happen to rise to leadership positions in spite of these challenges are often thought to be either too aggressive or not aggressive enough, and what appears to be assertive, self – confident, or entrepreneurial in a man often looks abrasive, arrogant, or self-promoting in a woman. Research also shows that both women and men tend to express more positive attributes toward their man supervisors than toward their women supervisors and this causes difficulty for women leaders to be appreciated for their leadership style. Women need to work together, support and encourage each other. They should not view other women as adversaries and hinder the advancement of each other.

There is a need to develop a new developmental agenda that is grounded in theories of gender and leadership and seeks to tackle the challenges and address the basic stereotypes whilst building a new ethos.

Women should be at the forefront of their destiny and the upcoming Zenande’s women in leadership event offers an opportunity for this engagement to happen.  Central to the theme of the event is networking and sharing ideas.  I look forward to working with a whole range of women leaders whilst we celebrate the journey to date, recognize and inspire more women to take up leadership positions and also map out ways of improving the status quo.  See further details at www.zenandeleadership.com

Pam Yako

Support Programme


Duration: 6 Months
Commencing: 18 April 2013

Government has been engaged in women emancipation programs and initiatives for the past 18 years. In many cases this has yielded significant results especially with regard to representativity. The HOD’s eight principles action plan for promoting women’s em-powerment and Gender Equality within the Public Service has been adopted and it is being implemented.
In line with principle 6 on Empowerment for Women’s Advance-ment and Gender equality, Zenande Leadership Consulting is offer-ing a women leaders support programme.

For more information on our Women in Public Service Support Programme click here

Women Leadership Effectiveness

Zenande joins the rest of South Africa in celebrating women’s month.  We celebrate this month by offering  a product for the public sector.  The workshop covers personal mastery;  leadership impact and tapping into the power of the group to be a facilitative leader.  We are proud to be partnering with government departments on this and we hope to have many more products.

Own your power women’s series

It is that time of the year when South Africa will celebrate and honour its women.  At Zenande we are offering these women an opportunity to attend a workshop over two days whose purpose will be to work with others whilst determining their own destiny.  Amongst others the session will help women to develop their own personal development plans.  For details please visit

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