Last week I spoke on a panel about issues women are facing in male-dominated industries and what responsibilities men and women have to change the status quo. We had a lively and passionate discussion with the audience and I could fill multiple pages with this topic.
Here is a phenomenon that a lot of women and men raised across the different countries I’ve lived in…
Where are our female role models?
It usually goes like this: “When I look up the career ladder, there are very few female role models. The more senior I get, the harder it is to find any women.”
What I truly believe is: We are all role models for each other! No matter where you are on your career ladder, you can always learn from each other.
Look at your peers and more junior folks in your company or across industries. What can you learn from them? Role models are all around you. It doesn’t mean you can only learn from more senior people.
We need to stop any unnecessary competition and instead think about ways we can all lift each other up. Whether we are in the corporate world, public sector or entrepreneurial world, there are always ways to help each other.
For instance, I love taking on projects outside my day-to-day responsibilities, that challenge me and provide visibility. When I led a diversity initiative, I had the opportunity to select passionate individuals, who would be a great fit for the initiative and at the same time benefit from the extra visibility.
Check-in: What is something you can do today so that women see themselves succeed?
As a leader in your personal life, your work environment and your community, are you doing enough to ensure that women see themselves succeed? Having relocated twice, I know how it feels to build your network and essentially your life from scratch. I mentor other expatriates and teach them cultural nuances and how they can overcome potential barriers in their new environment.
Our female role models are right around us. It is our collective responsibility to create inclusive environments and be role models for each other.
My CHALLENGE FOR YOU: Be that role model and help others, no matter where they are on the career ladder.
Keep rocketing your life!
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