‘It’s a man’s world…?’

So that’s what James Brown stated, quickly followed by the fact it would, ‘be nothing, without a women or girl’.

In the start of my career, I always wondered, what I needed to do to climb the organizational ladder. My bosses, and the Executive Management were typically male, and I was intrigued to know how a women could have a place at that table.

As I started to progress through my career, I noticed something very common, amongst those women who had managed to break the glass ceiling, most, but not all, try to replicate some male behaviors. However, coming from a women, this came across as direct, aggressive, disconnected and cold.

I saw these women progressing their careers, but disconnecting from other women, and men, around them. I believed they were demonstrating that the, ‘I’ was more powerful than the, ‘we’ and that’s what you had to be like to become a leader in a business.

For me there is something very powerful about being a women. It is proven that women, from reading articles by Forbes, Fortune etc., have a number of skills which clearly differentiates us, primarily focused around:

  1. Opportunity experts – We see the opportunities that are presented, not only in our professional but personal life also. Forbes states, ‘women, when given the opportunity to be themselves, are natural leaders!’
  2. Networking Professionals – Recently I hear more women stating that men do this better, as we have so many external commitments, and this is something we need to be focusing on, however, as Forbes states, ‘unlike men, women stick together and protect one another (though many would equally say that women also fiercely compete against each other too).   At the initial stages of networking, women are gracious and generous in their ability to give and open doors for one another.   They want to feel as if they are making an impact, helping to make a difference in the lives of others.’
  3. We are relationship specialists – ‘Women are specialists at cultivating relationships that are purposeful, genuine and meaningful. They focus on growing healthy, long-lasting relationships. Women don’t quit. They thrive at creating and sustaining momentum for both themselves and others.’ Forbes. We must learn to recognize the power this skills can bring us.
  4. We are natural givers – We enjoy supporting a cause that serves the advancement and acceleration of societal needs.

One of the biggest life lessons that I have learnt, particularly over the last few years since having children, is to be authentic, it’s such a power thing. People can read through you more than you think, and actually being honest and true to yourself ensures people believe in you, and want to come with you on your career journey.