by Isabella Stewart
Around this time of year, Year 12s are no doubt busy with university applications and questions like ‘Who is your role model?’, ‘What leadership skills do you think you possess?’ and ‘What do you see is most important in a leader?’. Most of you probably think of great world politicians and figureheads like Malala Yousafzai, Pope Francis or Mahatma Gandhi to model our morals by. Whilst all of these people are definitely going down in the hall of fame of ‘World’s Greatest Leaders’, I reckon a few of the incredible men and women below are not only deserving of a similar title, but never stop making us laugh, cry and everything in between – all from the comfort of your couch.
Michael Scott from The Office
“Would I rather be feared or loved? Easy. Both. I want people to be afraid of how much they love me.” Okay. Maybe he didn’t have it together 100% of the time or have the best tact when handling professional situations but there is no one with a bigger heart or a bigger sense of humour to liven up any seminar in the conference room or rock the house at the Dundies.
Lorelai Gilmore from Gilmore Girls
Never a dull moment in the Gilmore household, not with Lorelai Gilmore around to make our caffeine levels look normal compared to the ever-witty bright light of Stars Hollow. Starting as 16-year-old maid, showing up on the doorstop of the Independence Inn with a baby in hand, Lorelai Gilmore never failed to amaze as she climbed the ranks to owning the Dragonfly, all with her classic Lorelai-flare. The path may have been long and windy, but she stands a testament to the fact that no matter what life may throw at you, with compassion, persistence, and good old fashioned movie-commentary-pop-tart-combo, anyone can make their dreams come true.
Monica Geller from Friends
Whilst she may be more memorable for her impeccably clean apartment and sometimes a little too demanding attention to detail, when looking back at Monica’s story you cannot deny her epic leadership skills. Not only is she an amazing friend who is willing to go to the ends of the earth for the ones she loved, but her incredible persistence and determination was sure to gain the respect of her less than enthused employees at Alessandro’s.
Daenerys Targaryen from Game of Thrones
She may be young and naïve at times, but she will always put her people first, and let nothing get in the way of making the right decision for the good of her subjects. At 5 foot 2 inches, the Lady of Dragonstone is caring, passionate and is not afraid to rule with an iron fist to protect those she loves and punish those who wrong them.
Leslie Knope from Parks & Recreation
Leslie is possibly the funniest, sweetest, goofiest and most passionate lady bosses there are. Leslie teaches us all to embrace every part of your personality and be true to yourself and you are sure to win over any crowd and gain the respect of everyone around.
Lisa Cuddy from House
From dealing with the ever-irritating and impulsive Dr. Gregory House, to rescuing an orphaned baby from an abandoned building – Lisa Cuddy never stops working, running all over Princeton-Plainsboro Teaching Hospital, putting out every fire with her firm beliefs, strong morals and unwavering empathy, you know you’re in safe hands with this Dean of Medicine.
Peggy Carter from Marvel’s Agent Carter
In a time where women were nothing more than maids, cooks and baby-making machines, Peggy Carter took the world by storm, kicking butt and taking names. She is one of the amazing women in the Marvel Universe that inspire girls all over the world to go after what you want, and more importantly, fight for what you know you deserve – no matter what anyone tells you.
Jessica Pearson from Suits
It would be foolish to think of great leaders and not look at the formidable Jessica Pearson. You definitely don’t want to be up against her in the courtroom. Loyal, smart, simply oozing confidence, and always wearing the finest outfits to charm any client (that make us all a little envious we don’t have her wardrobe), it comes as no surprise that Jessica remains partner of the law firm throughout the entirety of the series as she makes tough but right decisions that gain the respect of all she meets.
Captain Ray Holt from Brooklyn Nine-Nine
This man may be the epitome of cool, calm and collected (maybe a little too cold sometimes), but in the face of dangerous situations and far too much discrimination, his stoic façade is definitely admirable. By keeping a steady mind he can diffuse any situation, and on top of his assertive personality and confidence to inspire others, it is impossible to not respect this guy.
Eleven from Stranger Things
Eleven is probably the most courageous, loyal and badass friend you could ever ask for. Being fiercely protective of her friends and taking down Demogorgon after Demogorgon without hesitation, she is the epitome of a leader as she rallies together her band of misfits to save the world. Rest safe, knowing that Elle is out there to protect us all from The Mind Flayer.