Women to prepare with emotional and mental stability to be leaders


By Asmahanim Amir and Mas Aliza Abu

Pix Shahiddan Saidi

BANGI, December 10 – Women must prepare themselves with emotional and mental stability to be future leaders, said president of the National Council of Women’s Organisations Malaysia (NCWO), Prof Emeritus Tan Sri Dr Sharifah Hapsah Syed Hasan Shahabudin.

She said, many women qualify to be leaders but are not chosen due to the lack of self-esteem.

“It is such as loss because we could not achieve 50 per cent women as leaders in organisations and institutions elsewhere in the public, private sector, and in non-governmental organisations,” she said in the closing of The Women’s Leadership Programme: Building Future Leaders.

She added the government has implemented various programmes and strategies to empower Malaysian women.

“We want them to be prepared because leadership is not all about knowledge but it is also about mental and emotions.

“When I was the Vice-Chancellor of UKM, I could see many students and lecturers who were knowledgeable but unfortunately they lacked self-confidence,” she said.

Therefore, she said, the conference was organised to build up strength and confidence in Malaysian future leaders.

“A good leader should be the best example for the team by creating professionalism and a healthy environment for the people to grow. They need to cooperate as a team to achieve common goals and leadership values like morality and ethics.”

The Director for Tun Fatimah Hashim Women’s Leadership Centre, UKM, Prof. Dr. Dayang Anita Abdul Aziz emphasized that the conference that was organised free of charge to UKM students, staffs and the community had been the platform to share all about leadership in the past, present, and future.

“Leaders should not limit their expertise. I may have been a surgeon but I should not limit my knowledge to surgery per se. Instead, I must be able to learn about women’s right, leadership challenges, and engagement and networking,” she said.

Prof. Dr. Dayang Anita is the first woman professor in paediatric surgeon in Malaysia. She is also the first woman to lead paediatric surgeon service in an academic institution in Malaysia.

Six topics were discussed, namely Women and Their Rights, Leadership Challenges, Engagement and Networking, Tackling Diversity, Mental Endurance, and Sharing Leadership Experience.

The Women’s Leadership Programme: Building Future Leaders was organised by UKM through its Tun Fatimah Hashim Women’s Leadership Centre (PKWTFH) with the cooperation of National Council of Women’s Organisations Malaysia (NCWO).

Besides Prof. Emerita Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Dr. Sharifah Hapsah, the programme featured Dato’ Sri Maznah Mazlan, Prof. Dato’ Dr. Rashila Ramli, Tan Sri Dato’ Sri Dr. Noorul Ainur Mohd Nur dan Dato’ Dr. Siti Norlasiah Ismail.