And the dust is still settling from recent years of moral meltdown exposed corrupt, self-centered and unscrupulous leaders in very high places.
Who can soon forget the torrent of scandals that rocked our faith in business, politics, even religion. They left most people deeply cynical of their leaders.
Perhaps the Enron, Real Estate debacle and sex scandal era has given way for us to give more thought to a leadership style other than the male-oriented, command and control model. And, so it seems "feminine values" are now being appreciated more in the marketplace.
Yes, the female style of leadership is coloring the landscape. And it's painting a different hue that's more heart-centered, collaborative, inspirational, intuitive, authentic, inclusive and relationship based. These are all hallmarks of how women tend to lead.
Problem is, a lot of women don't yet embrace the power of their leadership style. They don't realize that those soft, intuitive skill sets are now in higher demand in the marketplace.
So, it's time for more women to wake up and find their voice. They must see the urgency to step into their space of leadership in the board room and at the big table where top level business decisions that craft our culture are being made.
Bob Perkins is doing his part to pull out a chair for ladies who should lead. The founder and Chairman of the AA-ISP (American Association of Inside Sales Professionals) is concerned not enough women are on track to become top level leaders.
He's pushing to get more women in AA-ISP's pipeline to develop more female leaders. He sites research from the CEB that reported, "Only 19% of sales leadership are held by women." And, "Last year, LinkedIn’s research indicated a similar 20% of VP level sales jobs were held by women."
Bob went on to say, "We encourage a push for more women sales leaders not because we think you should, but because it makes business sense. Overlooking top candidates who happen to be female can cost your company in a number of ways.
Xactly Insights discovered that women reach higher quota attainment than their male counterparts, and we know that companies who add women to their board of directors are 42% more profitable. Let’s work together and see some forward movement in 2016!
Bob offers a number of strategies businesses can use in-house to help women climb the leadership ladder. They include being more deliberate in having mentorship and sponsorship for women, and also having more female presenters at company seminars and conferences to be visible role models.
You can read Bob Perkins' full article at Letters To Leaders where he lays out the challenge and AA-ISP's efforts to address it.
But what can women do to boost their leadership portfolio and stand out in the crowd? Here are a few of my suggestions, Women:
- Know the worth of your "feminine" value (your intrinsic skill sets) to the marketplace
- Come to work with creative, innovative ideas; workable solutions you can offer to solve the company's problems
- Don't be shy about speaking up in the board room or managerial meeting (boldness and self-confidence will help you stand out among your colleagues)
- Seek to collaborate and support instead of compete with colleagues (The more you help others the more you help yourself )
- Volunteer to work on projects no one else will (You'll impress the right people who are always watching)
- Ask for what you want (Whether it's help understanding an assignment, getting a raise or promotion, you determine your future by boldly asking for what you want)
Women, your unique leadership skills are needed to help restore the badly damaged image of ethical leadership. This is your moment to claim your space in the marketplace, then step up and lead!
Sharon Frame is LeadHERship™ Coach, Award -Winning CNN Anchor/Writer; Dynamic Speaker; Executive Speaking Coach and Consultant. Find out how she can serve you or your company as a LeadHERship Speaker, Executive Speaking Coach or video marketing consultant by visiting her website at Sharon Frame Speaks.