Why are there so few women leaders in government and business? Is the problem discrimination? Or that women sometimes hold back? Or both? Here's my take.
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- Well said. I would love to see and help nurture more girls and women in leadership.Jan 27, 2013
- Great article Nicholas! And Anandi - love your comments as well. I actually had a conversation with someone from Catalyst on Friday about a Visible Minority report done here in Canada in 2007 and wanted to find out if much has changed - which to my surprise (not really) haven't. I agree with Sheryl where she said that we need to Lean In - I particularly loved this point "We internalize the negative messages we get throughout our lives, the messages that say it's wrong to be outspoken, aggressive, more powerful than men. We lower our own expectations of what we can achieve." I believe that this is one of the barriers to our success. The other being lack of sponsorship and mentors for Visible Minority women (see Catalyst report on this) and organisational barriers. Most companies who do make advancement of women a priority do not make diversity & inclusion part of that priority. My discussion with Catalyst focused on not only the need for Organisational change and for men to be a part of that change, but also the need and the importance of us Visible Minority women working on the "stuff" what I call the "Elephant Syndrome" that gets in the way of our own success. The "Elephant' can be any of those messages that Cheryl mentioned, because it is something that we women do and often times we don't deal with the "stuff" that gets in the way of our success.While there may be a lack of sponsorship and mentors for visible minority women, how many of us are putting our hands up, or even asking for high profile jobs? I have reflected on my career and I have identified the places where I would've put my hand up or b. Go after the higher rating on my Performance Appraisal. But due to my own self-sabotage, I lowered my expectations and wasn't assertive enough. So yes more diverse groups reach better decisions so we women need to stop playing small, identify our "elephants' and "Lean In".Jan 27, 2013
- Oh and dead on again Nicholas - it doesn't necessarily mean that women are more nurturing. There are lots of women who are jerks in the workplace. And lack of support is evident based on conversations I've had. Something interestingly enough can be tied to the "Elephant Syndrome" which is tied to lack of confidence. Why so some women lash out? Is it the fear of scarcity? That there isn't enough room for both of us?Jan 27, 2013
- Does the male to female ratio have to be 1:1 in order to consider an institution accomodating?
If men were largely in the minority, would anybody question where all the men were? I highly doubt it. Nurses and teachers are both woman dominated...and I think thats good and not worth questioning.
My point is the public and media frequently question the presence and abundance of women in any given institution, but I've never heard the reverse. And thats okay....to be concerned with the presence of gender seems to be averse to the qualifications needed to hold said position.
As far as elected officials go, women more often play the role of family matron...she wants to have a position that also allows family time, and we all know public office demands much, much more.
And as woman population and voting rises, so will the presence of women in public office....same with minorities.
The answer to a more gender "equal" government? TIME.Jan 27, 2013
- Have you seen the Danish political drama Borgen? It is brilliant and shows how difficult it is for a woman to balance a high powered position with family life and motherhood.Jan 27, 2013
- Right on. The 'crabs in a barrel' syndrome is also hurtful to girls and women, and quite apparent in my own experiences and community.Jan 28, 2013