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How To Become An Effective Team Leader

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“Leaders become great, not because of their power, but because of their ability to empower others”, Jim Maxwell. 

A great quote to start with. You may be a leader already or might become one in the future or you just want to be a leader in every situation of your life. This article will help you understand how easy it is to become a leader and how difficult it is to manage a team. What makes you a leader? Well pretty simple, a good opportunity by your management can make you a leader of a team. But wait, it is just a name for your position or job because to become a leader is much more than that.

A leader is the one who is-

  1. proactive
  2. positive
  3. passionate
  4. productive

The 4 P’s describe the requirements you need to have, let us examine them closely:

You must be proactive, as a leader you need to expect the unexpected, make necessary arrangements and prepare your team. For example, you are a leader for a building construction project, you get a weather report that there is a possibility for a severe storm in the coming week, what will be your action plan? You have material to be protected from getting wet, you have to arrange for protective plastic sheets and coverings for sensitive areas of the newly constructed building, maybe there is a possibility of damage due to the storm. Brainstorm all the possibilities, alert your team of what could happen. discuss collectively and be ready to face the storm!


Positivity is the ability to stay calm during a moment of crisis and being hopeful for the best under high pressure. Not everything goes according to plan, sometimes when the unexpected happens you must not panic and terrify your team. A leader must lead his/her pack like a lion. Show no signs of weakness, fear or disappointment. What makes you different from others is the ability to motivate your group in a crisis situation. You must encourage your team, guide them and continuously inspire them. Be confident even under unfavourable circumstances and behave gracefully, your teammates will always observe how you would react in such situations.


Passion will make you plan wisely and well. When you playing the role of a leader, remember that you will be held responsible for your team’s success and failure. Your motive is to gain success, be passionate and mad about it, and make it possible no matter what difficulties you face. Be passionate about every detail of your project, at every step. This will give you those little achievements which will finally land you success.

As a leader, you must be productive. you have to take decisions but make sure those decisions are meaningful and ensure your team’s success. If your plans fail or do not produce better results, it will make your team lose confidence in you as a leader. You will be discouraged and that can make your team ineffective. Any decision or planning you do, consult your team and take their opinion on it first. If they come up with any doubts about its effectiveness, then analyse them and let your team members know whether they are right/wrong about it.

How to manage your team effectively?

Well, we got to know the qualities of a leader, now let’s skip to the other requirement- how you must manage your team:

Communication is the key to success: any plan, update, news, rules etc. must be communicated well to the team. You must deploy effective communication channels to communicate with your teammates. That could be through emails, phone, one on one, notice board etc. but make sure everyone has a chance to know what you want them to know. Every teammate must be able to communicate with each other as this will increase cooperation among them.

Know your team: You should know your team well; where are they from, what are their abilities, personality type, capabilities, working style, nature, remarks, etc. Talk to them on an individual basis. This will give you a better chance to assess them. Before you take any further step it is very important to have a relationship on a personal level with every team member.

Be empathetic towards your teammates. Come on, we are not dictators! Be considerate and try to understand their difficulties and limitations. This will make your teammates comfortable and more willing to work hard on the project. Above all humble yourself.  Be the first to initiate a work responsibility, set yourself as an example to others. Be ethical, if you are unethical as a leader you cannot expect your team to be honest. Understand every scenario and situation, observe a given problem deeply. A leader who lacks understanding is nothing but a loss and damage to his/her team.

“Start humble and finish the project with roaring success…”




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An ambassador and trained facilitator under Eco Femme (a social enterprise working towards menstrual health in south India), Sanjina is also an active member of the MHM Collective- India and Menstrual Health Alliance- India. She has conducted Menstrual Health sessions in multiple government schools adopted by Rotary District 3240 as part of their WinS project in rural Bengal. She has also delivered training of trainers on SRHR, gender, sexuality and Menstruation for Tomorrow’s Foundation, Vikramshila Education Resource Society, Nirdhan trust and Micro Finance, Tollygunj Women In Need, Paint It Red in Kolkata.

Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

Saurabh has been associated with YKA as a user and has consistently been writing on the issue MHM and its intersectionality with other issues in the society. Now as an MHM Fellow with YKA, he’s launched the Right to Period campaign, which aims to ensure proper execution of MHM guidelines in Delhi’s schools.

The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

Read more about his campaign.

Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

Her campaign #MeriMarzi aims to promote menstrual health and wellness, hygiene and facilities for female sex workers in UP. She says, “Knowledge about natural body processes is a very basic human right. And for individuals whose occupation is providing sexual services, it becomes even more important.”

Meri Marzi aims to ensure sensitised, non-discriminatory health workers for the needs of female sex workers in the Suraksha Clinics under the UPSACS (Uttar Pradesh State AIDS Control Society) program by creating more dialogues and garnering public support for the cause of sex workers’ menstrual rights. The campaign will also ensure interventions with sex workers to clear misconceptions around overall hygiene management to ensure that results flow both ways.

Read more about her campaign.

MH Fellow Sabna comes with significant experience working with a range of development issues. A co-founder of Project Sakhi Saheli, which aims to combat period poverty and break menstrual taboos, Sabna has, in the past, worked on the issue of menstruation in urban slums of Delhi with women and adolescent girls. She and her team also released MenstraBook, with menstrastories and organised Menstra Tlk in the Delhi School of Social Work to create more conversations on menstruation.

With YKA MHM Fellow Vineet, Sabna launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society. As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Read more about her campaign. 

A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Find out more about the campaign here.

A native of Bhagalpur district – Bihar, Shalini Jha believes in equal rights for all genders and wants to work for a gender-equal and just society. In the past she’s had a year-long association as a community leader with Haiyya: Organise for Action’s Health Over Stigma campaign. She’s pursuing a Master’s in Literature with Ambedkar University, Delhi and as an MHM Fellow with YKA, recently launched ‘Project अल्हड़ (Alharh)’.

She says, “Bihar is ranked the lowest in India’s SDG Index 2019 for India. Hygienic and comfortable menstruation is a basic human right and sustainable development cannot be ensured if menstruators are deprived of their basic rights.” Project अल्हड़ (Alharh) aims to create a robust sensitised community in Bhagalpur to collectively spread awareness, break the taboo, debunk myths and initiate fearless conversations around menstruation. The campaign aims to reach at least 6000 adolescent girls from government and private schools in Baghalpur district in 2020.

Read more about the campaign here.

A psychologist and co-founder of a mental health NGO called Customize Cognition, Ritika forayed into the space of menstrual health and hygiene, sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights and gender equality as an MHM Fellow with YKA. She says, “The experience of working on MHM/SRHR and gender equality has been an enriching and eye-opening experience. I have learned what’s beneath the surface of the issue, be it awareness, lack of resources or disregard for trans men, who also menstruate.”

The Transmen-ses campaign aims to tackle the issue of silence and disregard for trans men’s menstruation needs, by mobilising gender sensitive health professionals and gender neutral restrooms in Lucknow.

Read more about the campaign here.

A Computer Science engineer by education, Nitisha started her career in the corporate sector, before realising she wanted to work in the development and social justice space. Since then, she has worked with Teach For India and Care India and is from the founding batch of Indian School of Development Management (ISDM), a one of its kind organisation creating leaders for the development sector through its experiential learning post graduate program.

As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

Find out more about her campaign here.

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A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

A Gender Rights Activist working with the tribal and marginalized communities in india, Srilekha is a PhD scholar working on understanding body and sexuality among tribal girls, to fill the gaps in research around indigenous women and their stories. Srilekha has worked extensively at the grassroots level with community based organisations, through several advocacy initiatives around Gender, Mental Health, Menstrual Hygiene and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the indigenous in Jharkhand, over the last 6 years.

Srilekha has also contributed to sustainable livelihood projects and legal aid programs for survivors of sex trafficking. She has been conducting research based programs on maternal health, mental health, gender based violence, sex and sexuality. Her interest lies in conducting workshops for young people on life skills, feminism, gender and sexuality, trauma, resilience and interpersonal relationships.

A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform, demanding that the Government of Assam install
biodegradable sanitary pad vending machines in all government schools across the state. Her petition on has already gathered support from over 90000 people and continues to grow.

Bidisha was selected in’s flagship program ‘She Creates Change’ having run successful online advocacy
campaigns, which were widely recognised. Through the #BleedwithDignity campaign; she organised and celebrated World Menstrual Hygiene Day, 2019 in Guwahati, Assam by hosting a wall mural by collaborating with local organisations. The initiative was widely covered by national and local media, and the mural was later inaugurated by the event’s chief guest Commissioner of Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) Debeswar Malakar, IAS.

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