As women in leadership roles, we tend to do things differently than our male counterparts. We’re usually more introvert and often let ourselves get talked over. We tend to lean back at the meeting table rather than in. Women leaders must go boldly.
Being bold is not a common trait for women. We are more reserved and prefer to analyze the situation before we state our opinions. There’s no sense to change into Tarzan when we know we are Jane. But it’s important that we don’t let our “inner Jane” hold us back. Women leaders must go boldly.
Even though women hold only about 15% of top executive positions, we still have role models to look up to. A few CEOs of major companies include Marissa Mayer (Yahoo), Dr. Lisa Su (Advanced Micro Devices), Mary Barra (General Motors), Irene Rosenfeld (Kraft Foods), Indra Nooyi (PepsiCo), and Patricia Woertz (Archer Daniels Midland – largest public company). And who can forget Oprah Winfrey?
When our confidence and self-esteem hit a low, it’s important we remember these women. They worked hard to forge ahead in their careers while juggling family. They didn’t let their “inner Jane” hold them back. Studies show that women are often better CEOs than men with corporate financial performance and ROI, social responsibility and fewer lay-offs.
The world needs more gutsy women, more women leaders and more women CEOs. Use these tips and #BeBoldForChange.
Women leaders must go boldly.
Control what you can. Make this your mantra. Use your sphere of influence to champion your causes. Break enormous challenges into smaller chunks that you and your team can accomplish. Smaller successes will be the foundation for larger ones.
Embrace discomfort. Push the envelope with yourself and your staff. Set expectations that make everyone stretch. Face your fears and take risks. Nothing great is accomplished in the comfort zone.
Don’t cheat on hard work. Hard work is needed to get ahead in anything in life – there’s no substitute. Play later. Patricia Woertz raised three children while working 80-hour weeks including demanding travel. When people see your accomplishments and tell you that you’re lucky, tell them you earned it.
“I wasn’t lucky. I deserved it.” ~ Margaret Thatcher
~ Karen Bullard – I am on a mission to ignite leadership purpose and passion helping you become better at what you do. Claim your free cheat sheet “Good-Bye NINO” with tips for how to be positive in a negative world — you’ll be glad you did!