Secret Southern Couture: Leadership Roles for Women: A Lamenting Story of Widening Gender Gaps   

Friday, September 20, 2019

Leadership Roles for Women: A Lamenting Story of Widening Gender Gaps

Leadership Roles for Women: A Lamenting Story of Widening Gender Gaps

Despite immense progress of the human race in every walk of life, the state of affairs for women is far from satisfactory and rather sordid, mainly due to lack of societal and system’s support. Take the case of leadership role; the fortune 500 companies list of 2018, show that only 24 CEOs are women, which is an abysmal 4.8%. The number is down 25% down from the preceding year when 32 women CEOs were heading fortune 500 companies in 2017.

Breaking the Glass ceiling and tackling Career labyrinths:

The famous glass ceiling metaphor (describing barriers for a woman in reaching the top positions) used by the wall street journal’s Carol Hymowitz and Timothy Schellhardt, is still part of the business lexicon. A more relevant term, however, is career labyrinths. The difference between the two is wonderfully explained by Dr. Alice Eagly, professor of social psychology at Northwestern University, IL. She describes the glass ceiling as "a bunch of men sitting at the board, impeding a woman’s progress as she comes close to the top". Dr. Eagly explains another term career labyrinths as "continual set of barriers women hit along the way and they start at the beginning of the woman’s career".

Changing institutional mindset:

The corporate mindset towards women is largely about stereotyping them. Only hiring more women will not suffice. The organizations will be required to create a conducive culture for the smooth working of the female workforce. This will include market-based salary, rewards on achievements, and training & development.

Women need to change as well:

Women should know their strengths and unique talents and using those, contribute to the organization’s goals. Susan Lucas Conwell, the global CEO of NamoBOT and an expert on women in leadership roles emphasizes on following points:
  • Awareness
  • Acting from their innate strength of creativity and collaboration.

Women should be leading entrepreneurs:

Leadership Roles for Women: A Lamenting Story of Widening Gender Gaps

Independently running a business is yet another good option to become an industry leader. I will give some of the most famous women entrepreneurs who are business leaders:

Huda Kattan CEO Huda Beauty and Tory Burch CEO Tory Burch have net worth of $550 million and$ 800 million respectively. They have set examples for other women, who by using their talent along with latest technological tools can become successful entrepreneurs For instance; they can also use the business name generator tool for finding creative names for their businesses. Cloud computing and internet technologies can also be used to supplement talent and take the business to a prestigious position.

The woman's roles in leadership is a subject related to the changing mindset of society, increased support of Governments, corporate initiatives and confidence and highly skilled women. For each woman, my advice is " no matter how many barriers you face, believe in yourself because for you the sky is the limit".