When the ceiling is smashed, women will see the clear blue sky. Currently, women are out of their comfort zones and are ready to take on challenging leadership roles than in the past. Of course, there are issues presented as constraints fighting progress of women in many workplaces across the world. Culturally, some men find it difficult reporting to women at the workplace. Some even fail to credit women who rise to the top on merit. Many believe the average woman do not have the capacity to develop herself to occupy top leadership roles and institutions. Ignore! There are several cases and rumours of office romance encounters leading to promotion and elevation of women in many offices. Nonetheless, there are also cases of women who have worked their way to the top through impressive preparation, unbelievable application of competencies, insistent hard work, superior performance and continuous self- development. In a knowledge sharing session, a female participant said to the class that there are also cases of men who are promoted and elevated in workplaces if they date female bosses. Honestly, this was not a debate. Whichever way we look at it, and as I share my Pink Leadership tips, tools and techniques, my argument remains that women must work their way up on merit. It is beautiful to be nice as a woman. In fact, sometimes, what makes one woman beautiful than the other, if not most of the time, is a clean smile.
“Use your smile and use your competencies at work.”
Hughes et al (2015) did extensive work on Women in leadership and they mentioned that there are no statistically substantial variances between the leadership styles of men and that of women.
Nonetheless, the differences found were that women and men do not have the same networking pattern. Women build trust quickly at the office and when the trust is broken, the workplace becomes more professionally risky for them. This is because women commit more to organizations than men do.
Research also suggests that many women are excelling at the workplace because of the natural traits required for effective leadership. Attention to details, calm when stressed, being tactful, listening to the heartbeats of the team, giving feedback, asking the right questions at the right time, showing concern for people and for productivity, and sticking to the knitting, are all essential drivers needed to succeed in leadership situations.
Women interact well and they enhance self-worth of team members, as they believe that people perform better when there is job satisfaction and when they feel good about themselves. Among the factors facilitating women progression at the workplace are that, psychologically, women themselves are changing aside from the fact that leadership roles and requirements to lead are also changing. Practices and societies are changing though there are cultural connotations that seek to debilitate women progression initiatives.
Women connect better. Women listen better. Women understand emotions and gesticulations better. These are strengths. A fine balance of emotional management and reasoning, which defines leadership, should guide women towards leadership success. The bar will not be lowered.
Fact! Women would have to jump above their heads to smash the ceiling, so to see the bright beautiful blue skies beyond the ceiling. Just hang on until we discuss the Glass Cliff.
This is Leadership!
Author: Richard Kwarteng Ahenkorah
Principal Trainer, Eagle Knowledge Institute || Author: Your Journey To The Top