As a woman leader, the tools you need to navigate your career and build your leadership skills may look slightly different than those for men. According to the Center for Creative Leadership’s Sara King, it’s especially important for women leaders to:
- Seek out mentors and advocates. Successful women are shown to have had help from above. Build relationships and find a mentor to help you navigate your organization, provide feedback and open doors.
- Take risks, accept challenges. Being able to adapt to new roles and new circumstances shows your versatility as a leader. Research shows that women who have stayed in one area of expertise too long or who have too-narrow a functional orientation are not viewed as promotable, so be willing to change jobs and take on special projects to gain experience.
- Be decisive, demand results. Successful women leaders make it clear that they expect results. They also need to be decisive and willing to take an unpopular stance.
- Be confident. Projecting an effective leadership image requires confidence. Don’t undermine good results with a weak or too-modest self-image.
Do you feel that the tools you need to help you grow as a woman leader are different than that of your male colleagues? If so, why is that?