Women Leadership – Aspiring yet not Thriving

titalGiving a leadership role or having a quota for women in senior leadership won’t solve the problem of gender inequality. The management must understand the roots of the issue – why women don’t make it to the top.

Many would associate their professional careers with Meghna, who started her career with high aspirations yet landed at a stagnant role in the middle management for several years and later put to a non challenging role which was said “it would be easier”. The initial years were promising of a bright career but things started to take a different shape when she got married and had kids. Many women are not even aware of the bias they have faced. What went wrong in her case was initially she got a lot of leadership lessons to handle the new leadership roles but later after her first child her potential was treated secondary stating she won’t be able to handle the pressure. The organization failed to groom her for the new leadership challenges.  Post maternity her growth stopped post senior manager. Her manager assumes that the increased responsibility at home would be a road block and she would not be as promising for a new challenging role as she has been. Her existing process was handed over to another manager and the organization failed to develop her for any new assignment.

The problem doesn’t stop at what people think; the problem is also how a woman perceives herself to be. Sakshi, a financial consultant chose to move her role from client interactions to backend operations because she failed to see herself as leading the way forward. She could not hold her point of view with clients and be assertive. She’s still doing justice to the new role but the organization lost a potential leader who could have proven to be future leader.

The existing leadership development programs fail to see that the current gender bias that persist which disrupts women to see them as leaders. They fail to encourage and motivate women to see themselves as leaders as well as be perceived as leaders by everyone else. Researches done by various organizations (like Mckinsey and KPMG) have highlighted those women who aspire to be leaders are not confident enough to lead.

For organizations that insist on diversity for senior positions to boost their productivity, must have leadership development programs that address the personal development of women keeping in mind the following aspects:

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1. Coach:  Talented and dynamic women leaders who can serve to be role models can mentor other future woman leaders to build their confidence. Their experiences could be critical to empower all other women who aspire to grow to higher levels and leverage rather than question their abilities.


employee-professional-300x1992. Exercise:  Organizations should provide challenging assignments that helps future woman leaders build confidence to step out of their comfort zone. Leadership Development programs should be designed to help them to shift from aspiring to be leaders to developing the confidence to lead. It’s like unleashing their potential.

feedback3. Engage: Receiving encouragement through programs that provide constructive feedback for further scope of development along with appreciation for a job well done and not just raises and promotions. Like Sakshi, many women face challenges collaborating and networking. A leadership development program that engages them on how to be bold and assertive.

transitioning4. Transitioning: Leadership development programs must support smooth transitioning to big roles. Providing challenging and aspiring opportunities to collaborate and create networks can only show results when women are made aware of their own strengths and not what others perceived them to be.

For women who aspire to be leaders it’s time to own your success. Take onus if you are determined to step up into the leadership role. Be confident to ask for what you deserve, don’t let gender define or limit your view on what you can accomplish in the future. Don’t chicken out from opportunities that push you out of your comfort zone. Invest on yourself through development programs that give you direction to increase your potential and make you ready for the big roles.

We would be happy to help. Do check our “Woman in Action” program meant for high aspiring women like you who wish to thrive and reach their full potential. To know more http://leaderinu.in/products.html

 

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What and How of Action Learning Coaching

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In today’s rapidly changing world, organisations are using Executive Coaching to increase efficiency, improve leadership skills among employees or address personal/organisational goals. Executive coaching focus on an individual, however as their skill as an executive improves, the entire organisation benefits. It expands self awareness and helps in renewal and growth of an individual.

But Action Learning Coaching takes it to the group level. Action Learning Coaching is a dynamic process of creative problem solving with diverse teams to develop leadership skills. The process has 5 essential components:-

  1. real business problem,
  2. team of 4-6,
  3. a process that encourages questioning and listening,
  4. a solution that can be implemented,
  5. an action learning coach.

Action Learning Coaching takes the power of coaching to the group level but is even more powerful because action learning teams only work on real problems requiring real solutions. The action learning coach helps build rapport among the team members, raising their self-awareness and taking the team to deeper level of learning.  The process focuses not only on ‘what’ has transpired; but it takes the team to understanding the ‘how’ and ‘why’ of their actions. Finally, by focusing the team on learning rather than just solving a problem the action learning coach takes the team to extraordinary levels of renewal and growth. The action learning process on the surface appears fairly simple, but in truth is extremely powerful. The objective of Action Learning Coaching is on learning and not the problem. Learning will provide the leverage for continuously improving team performance.

As a leader, become the synergizer, the glue that bonds your team members together as well as the yeast that enhances and expands their ability to learn and take vigorous actions. Contact us to get more details on the same. 

Leaders as Coaches…how to inspire and influence?

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Today’s learning organizations lay emphasis on effective leaders learning to coach their team..but why, why do leaders need to coach? Coaching not only helps leaders build relationships with their team but also help team realize their potential to deliver beyond. Coaching helps to build up and if leader can get it right, he becomes a person of great influence. It’s a massive responsibility and is essential to know how to coach.

Leader as a coach must:

…Inspire towards the Vision

Leader Coach must have the ability to inspire and encourage others towards the common goal. As a Leader Coach you must direct the team, must hand hold them towards the goal. If you are not passionate about the work you cannot coach anyone to perform or improve.

…Enhance skills

You are not just coaching to improve performance but also to develop their skills. Leader Coach must create an environment to evoke creativity and talent in people. Remember you are leading them so it’s important that you channelize team’s ideas.

…Excellent listening skills

You should listen without assuming, interrupting, advising or correcting. Set aside assumptions and do not presume. The more sharply attentive you are, the more keenly you will sense other person’s inner state. You must monitor your own body language to ensure that it telegraphs openness.

…Have a plan to lead

Leader Coach believes in creating change rather than managing change. What has worked in the past shall not hold good for the future. So you must coach to find new paths and plans to achieve results. You must anticipate and share the obstacles or changes that you foresee. Your personal experiences and learning helps the team to learn more.

..Have social intelligence

Leader Coach must build a rapport with the team. When people are in rapport, you can be more creative and more efficient in decision making. You must also be able to perceive situations from another perspective.  Anticipate questions, concerns and fears and address them openly and completely.

…Build a culture of trust and openness

Your people should not hesitate to object or disagree. You must have an open mind set to welcome a disagreement as an opportunity to explore new view points. People should not have the fear of being judged and you should not fear of being too vulnerable.

…Take feedback

Leader Coach should be open to receive feedback and know how effective your coaching is. Numbers are objective; you need a subjective point of view to enhance your effectiveness.