Women in leadership roles are the future

Authored by Shriya Garg, Co-Founder and Marketing Director of Content Ninja

“A little girl has come to meet the CEO,” announced the receptionist as I arrived for a meeting with a prospective client. Back then, I was just 22 years old, fresh out of college, having quit a cushy job at a Big 4 to start something of my own. I had no past experience in the industry, no financial backing, or VC funding.

My gender and age had become my albatross.

Today, women represent half of the working population in the world. Yet, there is a stark difference between male and female representation in leadership roles, even in the year 2022.

Despite ample evidence of female-led organisations faring better than their counterparts, women leaders are expected to work harder to reach where their male peers begin their careers.

Leadership roles don’t need hard-working women. They just need more women representation, period, and those open to fresh perspectives must embrace their true value.

In honour of this year’s International Women’s Day and #WomenHistoryMonth, I want to shed light on how female leadership can help organisations thrive – based on my personal experience as a female entrepreneur and the founder of a hyper-growth company.

Here are three advantages that female leaders bring to the board room.

Harness the power of soft skills

While tech skills, expertise, and wisdom are the gold standards for leadership, soft skills are equally critical to success and work-readiness. Soft skills are synonymous with emotional intelligence, and women outperform men in 11 of 12 key EI competencies, which include:

  • Professionalism – Accountability, self-motivation, ethics, and resilience

  • Networking and collaboration

  • Interpersonal relationships

  • Critical thinking

Better mentorship

Mentorship is vital for career progression, job satisfaction, and lower employee burnout. Mentors don’t judge your ideas or dreams – they help you reach them. Pew Research found that women make better mentors than men, which also leads directly from their soft skill prowess.

Diverse solutions-oriented approach

Having a diverse leadership cohort leads to more innovations within an organisation. It means that there is diversity of thought, that leads to a solution-driven approach, and significantly higher business outcomes. In fact, women-led organisations that prioritise innovation see higher financial gains, improved employee productivity, and higher turnover. The study also indicates that having more women in leadership roles predicts higher job satisfaction and commitment to the organisation – for individuals across genders.

Back in 2015, when working from home wasn’t a common option in India, I opened the doorways to women far off to join my team, by offering fully remote roles, deliverable-based goals, a flexible work environment, and even soft loans, in some instances.

I hired women in smaller cities in India, where elders would not allow them to step out of the home to work, or where women were caregivers and needed flexibility. A single mother who worked for us part-time was able to use that income to enable her son’s cancer treatments. One young trans man, struggling to find fully remote roles, even told me that this job saved him from ending his life!

When women integrate their soft and hard skills to fuel their leadership, they bring innovation to the organisation and lead others towards sustainable growth. I believe that’s what being on the margins does to “little girls”: they close the gap, one way or another.

DISCLAIMER: The views expressed are solely of the author and Adgully.com does not necessarily subscribe to it.


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