Kathleen Sebelius, HHS Secretary

Meet the 68th most powerful person in the planet – Kathleen Sebelius, U.S. Health and Human Services secretary.


If you notice, all if not many of the women who came to be called “powerful” has one thing in common – a Strong Will. This doesn’t necessarily mean they’re someone who’d just get angry or something like that, or even someone with a formidable voice – but someone who’d stand for what they believe in, regardless if they’re praised or criticised. Such is Kathleen Sebelius.

I had this conversation with a female broker just recently – she says the hardest thing to do is talking to people. You got to learn to adjust to different personalities, more so and specially if there’re complaints or pressures.

She’s got job knowledge and good-natured. But then you could sense her timidity, this could understandably be because of culture or how she was raised. I’m not trying to demean, point a finger or what, it’s just that… that. Ambition and contentment just probably got mixed up.

Well, if you just want to help out the family or be a housewife, that’s okay, that’s good. Remember, “behind every successful man is a supportive woman”. But if you really want a career, you can’t be intimidated by your boss, or even by your most distinguished clients. This is not to say that you could simply ignore or disrespect them, of course not but handle with care and confidence.

Sebelius had a Governor for a father, John Gilligan. And having been exposed to her father’s world at an early age, aided in strengthening that resolve that would soon awaken other traits in propelling her to become only the second female governor of Kansas.

From her handling of the 2008 tax revenue crisis to her stance in abortion among others, you could see how she battled criticisms and obstructions, and still remain focused – eventually leading many to believe in her as a potential candidate for President then Vice President.

See, most everybody wants to make it. However, if you have so much worry and give in to it, it’s going to drain you. If you wish for something but is intimidated – you’d end up going circles. Power is about strong will, not about a “loud” vocal chord. It’s about being never intimidated whoever you are facing in this planet, not about being a “yes” man just to find favor.

Now, as Health and Human Services secretary, Sebelius is responsible for the implementation of Obamacare – so wide in scope that her decisions would mold American lives and those of the health industry – for decades.

It’s not time to shrink back or get cocky, but it’s an opportunity to show you’re more than just a powerful Leader – in that you have a Heart for your people.

What’s your take?