Three Leadership Lessons from Aviation/Space Heroines Amelia Earhart & Sally Ride

Tuesday, July 24, 2012 | comments

Google marked the female pioneering aviator Amelia Earhart birthday with a doodle on 7/24, the other space heron, the first U.S woman astronaut Sally Ride also passed away yesterday. There are many leadership brainstorming forums these days, spur divergent thoughts about characters and charisma of authentic leadership. What kind of leadership legacy Amelia & Sally left to continually inspire today & tomorrow’s generation?

 1. Purpose

"The stars seemed near enough to touch and never before have I seen so many. I always believed the lure of flying is the lure of beauty, but I was sure of it that night."
Amelia Earhart

Amelia Earhart was a noted American aviation pioneer and author, she was the first aviatrix to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean, She set many other records, wrote best-selling books about her flying experience, and she was among the first aviators to promote commercial air travel through the development of a passenger airline service.

Sally Ride was a well trained scientist, also broke the astronautical glass ceiling with her journey aboard the Space Shuttle Challenger in 1983.

Both Amelia and Sally’s life are purposeful-Fly High, exciting, broke career ceilings, overcome numerous obstacles, inspire and set the footprint for new generation to follow.

2. Courage

“The most difficult thing is the decision to act, the rest is merely tenacity. The fears are paper tigers. You can do anything you decide to do. You can act to change and control your life; and the procedure, the process is its own reward."   --Amelia Earhart

Aviation and Space are the most adventurous career journeys, it takes courage, persistence, strong character and intense training to complete missions. During an attempt to make a circumnavigational flight of the globe in 1937, Earhart disappeared over the central Pacific Ocean near Howland Island.

Amelia and Sally are both risk takers, teach us modern leadership lessons about courage.  It takes purpose and courage to overcome obstacles, endure hardship, keep calm under pressure, streamline procedure and process, to make achievement.

3. Influence

 "Our future lies with today's kids and tomorrow's space exploration." SALLY RIDE

Leadership is all about influence. Both Amelia and Sally have charismatic appeal, independence, persistence, coolness under pressure, and goal-oriented career.  They are both authors to write numerous books for sharing their adventurous experience with the fans and children; also hundreds of article and scores of books or songs have been written about their lifes which are often cited as a motivational tale, especially for girls.

In a recent interview with STEM Connector, Ride said that "while being the first American woman to fly in space was an amazing experience that has allowed me to be a role model to many young girls, I am most proud of the Sally Ride Science Academy. perceptions can become reality, and that's why I have devoted my life to getting young people, especially girls, excited about science."

And the most important thing is: they both enjoy their adventures:

“Adventure is worthwhile in itself."                                              Amelia Earhart

“The view of Earth is spectacular.”                                                   Sally Ride
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