Diversity Dividend – Women in Leadership

Download your free copy of our White Paper Women, Naturally Better Leaders for the 21st Century.  

 

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Professional Women’s Network (PWN)London appoints new VP to explain “Why women are more suited to lead in the 21st century…. than men!”

The PROFESSIONAL WOMEN’S Network (PWN) London is proud to announce the appointment of Greg Young, as Vice President for Balanced Leadership of the UK city network of PWN Global. PWN works to accelerate gender balanced leadership in business & society through hundreds of events and activities which promote professional development and international, cross industry, online and in-person networking.

In addition to being an experienced board level coach and facilitator, Greg is CEO of LeaderShape Global, a UK Headquartered leadership development organisation that specialises in developing transpersonal leaders and organisations that are fit for the 21st century.  A passion for Greg is working with women leaders, preparing them for higher office frequently in male dominated environments.  He is a published author on developing women leaders and is a speaker at international events.

Greg says his vision of women’s leadership in the 21st century is to: “Foster & nurture the engagement of men in organisations, such as major corporates, to help them generate plans to promote and develop a strong pipeline of women leaders.  Their organisation will perform better in a more uncertain world; the more diverse one’s strategy the greater the breadth of thinking strategically. It is proven that gender balance is one way of empowering that broader vision.”

In recent years, the rate of growth of women entrepreneurs has been at least double that of their male counterparts, heralding a Golden Age for women entrepreneurs equipped with inspiration, know-how and funding.   PWN supports companies and organisations with corporate services, to raise their visibility as a gender balanced organisation and meeting their geographical needs with a comprehensive programme. Together they place gender balance at the very core of business operations.

PWN’s Co-President, Rina G Lynch, says:

“We welcome Greg’s practical experience in this field along with the academic rigour he adds to the understanding of organisational concerns. In a context of mounting pressure on companies and managers to become more gender balanced.  PWN works to bring a perspective of helping women grow in their careers to make a difference in male-dominated corporate world. In this, the perspective of men to assist from positions of strength is invaluable.

“It’s time to move on from some of the 20th century’s identity politics and its backlashes, and open a dialogue where all genders and businesses can craft a new, more constructive and more inclusive dialogue – for the benefit of everyone!”

On Wednesday 6th December (at both 9am and 4pm GMT) Greg Young and his LeaderShape colleague, Director, Danielle Grant, invite world leaders and aspiring leaders to join a FREE one-hour webinar entitled ‘Women, Naturally Better Leaders for the 21st Century’. Please click on the link here for full info, including how to register.

This follows the publication by Routledge of a White Paper of the same title, which you can view here

Connect, share, learn, advance – yourself and the world!

 

 

What You are Saying to us.

WE’VE NOW HAD over 11,000 downloads from our first two White Papers published in conjunction with publisher Routledge.  The first White Paper was on the subject of “Ethical Leadership” and you can see the feedback from that white paper below, including the numerous comments. The most important factor for us is the high level of appreciation you are showing of our work, including a 92% good or excellent rating from those who downloaded the papers.
Thank you!

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We enjoyed so many comments from you, which have helped inform our understanding of how our thinking can help you in your organisation. Here is a random selection of the kind of comments we received.

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The second White Paper, on the topic of “Woman, the Natural Leaders for the 21st Century” has proved quite controversial and it’s clear you have strong views on the topic based on the feedback we are receiving. We will be publishing that information separately shortly.
Are you missing out on a dynamic thread of comments on leadership issues? Join our powerful LinkedIn group and comment on what you are reading here.

 

Women Naturally Better Leaders for the 21st Century?

janice-new.jpgBy Janice Steed RGN RM ADM MSc PGC, accredited in MBTI step 1 and 2, Firo-b and author of two chapters in ‘Creating a Coaching Culture for managers in Your Organisation’: Routledge.

I RECENTLY READ this exciting new white paper written by Greg Young CEO of LeaderShape Global published by Routledge and feel compelled to develop
some of my own thinking:

On reading the white paper, which is full of evidence in support of the slightly controversial title (which doesn’t have a question mark as I have placed after it) I feel there is a huge amount to commend the argument. I would of course say that being a woman myself…. However, I am also a leader of some considerable experience, which certainly has not been universally positive in terms of my experiences of women, so it made me think – are women naturally better leaders?

The research that LeaderShape have done on emotional intelligence and the competencies for transpersonal leadership are certainly in line with my own experiences and academic understanding. My journey has taken me through a career as a nurse and midwife with an advanced diploma in midwifery, before a long career as a Board Director and now some 9 years as an organisation consultant, facilitator and executive coach, with the latter complemented with an MSc and PGC from Ashridge with underpinning theoretic frameworks around relational consulting and coaching; meaning we do things ‘in relationship’ to effect change and co-create culture, behaviours and leadership/ followership dynamics.

In the process of the master’s degree, which was a journey of self-awareness and curiosity, being encouraged to notice and suspend judgement in order to understand, get underneath and work with ‘what is’. I also explored how ‘being a midwife’ was still with me, having honed my senses and orientated me towards working alongside, facilitating the others’ process. I thought about midwifery and recalled having trained two male midwives – yes male midwives, not ‘mid-husbands’! Midwife means in old English ‘With Woman’ and there are certain qualities which I believe midwives need in order to best ‘facilitate the others’ process. One of which is empathy.

I further developed this curiosity and inquiry when I undertook my dissertation and explored the work of Kathleen King (Critchley, King and Higgins 2007) who had studied the work of Fletcher (1999) and Gilligan (1993) amongst others looking at the effect of gender and relational practice and of psychological theory and women’s development.

They had come to the view, as had King, that it was not gender that was a determinant but rather ‘feminine and masculine behaviours’ which could be present in both men and women. These being feminine behaviours of community and collaboration and masculine behaviours of agency, self-determination focus. This also resonated with my own experience, where I have experienced women who are totally ‘agentic’ in their behaviours, only interested in ‘driving ahead to reach their own ends no matter who they trample on’.

But let’s not look at this simplistically, being a transpersonal leader, ethically orientated, also requires a moral compass. Having empathy and emotional intelligence is not the only aspect. We could certainly have immoral, emotionally intelligent leaders, and, personality preferences, which we are born with, do come into this. Research of Myers Briggs shows that there is no gender preference in all but one preference the T-F ‘Thinking-Feeling’preference. ‘Thinkers’ are logical and make decisions objectively standing outside and ‘Feelers’ step into a situation to feel how it might be, thereby linking to a more empathetic stance. Research shows that there are more women than men with a natural F preference.

So what does all this lead to in my analysis and commentary? In the white paper Greg talks about the fact that we are slowly going through a societal change which allows the natural qualities that women have to come to the fore and that being the case demonstrates them as being better equipped for leadership in the 21st century. I too think that may be the case and that a lot of those qualities have been suppressed in the past, with those women learning competitive behaviours in order to succeed. Indeed, having done my own MBTI profile 6 times over the past 30 years I have moved from an ENTJ to an ENFJ and I realise that I had deliberately suppressed the F preference in order to be an ‘acceptable’ board member.

Furthermore, I think the real issue is valuing feminine qualities of collaboration and community, in balance with masculine behaviours, which may be present in both men and women, and, if so valued we will naturally allow those women who have those qualities to come through with confidence, authenticity and integrity, role modelling and co-creating the behaviours we need to survive in the 21st century.

‘Interested in Women in Leadership?  Then why not join the @LeaderShapeUK twitter chat? Mon 7th Nov 2016 10.00 – 11.00 a.m UK time. Follow: #WomenLeadership’.

References:

King K, (2007) in Critchley, King and Higgins organisational Consulting: A Relational Perspective: Middlesex University Press

Fletcher JK, (1999) Disappearing Acts: Gender, Power and Relational Practice at Work. Cambridge MA: MIT Press

Gilligan, C (1993) In a Different Voice. Psychological Theory and Women’s Development. Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press

LeaderShape Global Expands to South Africa

LeaderShape Global, is proud to announce it has appointed Mathye and Ditlou Dynasty Corporate Consultants (MmDdCc) as its sole Associate in the Republic of South Africa. CEO, Mokadi Max Mathye has been appointed Managing Partner in South Africa and a LeaderShape Faculty Member.  Mokadi will be responsible for developing LeaderShape’s business throughout the territory.

Ethics Embedded –

A workshop with a major division of one of the world’s largest multinational corporations to guide their vision of embedding an ethical culture and improving sustainable profitability.

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ONE OF THE MOST WELL-KNOWN global manufacturing & engineering corporations wished to create an ethical culture as the core of their long-term success.  A code of conduct already existed, that employees signed up to worldwide. The organisation had a structure for ethical compliance but the CEO felt they needed something much more compelling than a tick-box exercise that can be circumvented.
LeaderShape Global facilitated a workshop for the senior leadership team, during a forum convened in the UK. The senior leadership team of 16 world-wide executives were keen to explore if and how developing an ethical culture could both drive and live in harmony with sustainable profitability and overall success. LeaderShape’s John Knights and Greg Young asked, “Why do you think being ethical is important for your company?”

Continue reading ‘Ethics Embedded –’

Is this the century of women in leadership?

women in construction and engineeringON INTERNATIONAL Women’s Day 2016, a look at LeaderShape’s data indicates that women are naturally better leaders for the 21st Century. Are we alone in this view? Well, the short answer is no. A broad ranging international study by global company Mercer entitled ‘When Women Thrive’ agrees.

What is special about leadership in the 21st century as opposed to the last? Well, we have perennial concerns of globalisation, technology and pace of change. But some other factors are emerging. The concept that the sole purpose of a company is to deliver shareholder value is being challenged. More companies now recognise that collaborative, rather than competitive behaviour creates more success. Ethical behaviour of companies is also coming to the fore, with the activities of those that have been downright corrupt,or at least economical with the truth, suffering financial penalties.

Are women well placed to lead in this century? The data shows they have all the right attributes including empathy, change catalyst, inspirational leadership. More than that, there are a number of reports that demonstrate that companies with women on the Board perform better. There are now women on the Board of every FTSE 100 company. This sounds great on paper but in practice most women are in NED positions, so one could argue the real power is being controlled by the men.

Getting an Edge, Avoiding Tokenism

Clearly, men play a big part in women getting the real power in companies. The enlightened ones recognise and embrace the strength and diversity of opinion women bring. Yet others steadfastly cling on to the old ways, harking back to when they were successful- they fail to recognise that this was in a different context, on another day. Some sectors are worse than others: a recent report showed that 1 in 3 Technology CEOs don’t think gender diversity is important. Congratulations to the 38% of those that do but the remainder do not. According to the report, most Tech CEOs rate a specific expertise very or extremely important. The fact is, they’re just not getting it. Technical expertise is ROI positive, potentially mission critical – necessary but insufficient. What will keep the company ahead is thought-diversity. So, having women on your Board and exploiting that thought-diversity is what will give your company a competitive edge. Having women on the Board as tokenism merely adds ballast to the payroll.

Most development programmes are still structured around a male dominated world.”

Women can also be their own worst enemy. LeaderShape’s data show that the two areas where women don’t score as well as men are self-confidence and emotional self-control. The LEIPA tool*, which based on a 360 format highlights this. The instrument compares observed behaviour against ideal, so the closer to ideal you perform, the better you do. We find that women consistently mark themselves poorly, so their self rating shows them to be pretty poor performers across all the Emotional Intelligence (EI) competencies. But being 360 format, when they see the scores that colleagues have given them, their hidden strengths (determined by the difference between their own scores and that of their colleagues) shine out and are usually manifold. This in itself can be incredibly reaffirming, but it seems to be a real issue that women will naturally undermine their own achievements, be afraid of being found out and suffer from low self-confidence. It then becomes self-fulfilling, especially if you add on that other EI competency where women score less well, emotional self-control.

Development programmes in many companies have yet to join the 21st century. They are still structured around a male dominated world, where the candidate puts themselves forward for the new job if they think they can do half of it and they will blag the rest. To develop a really good 21st century development culture, then the company must work with its employees (especially the women) and say, ‘What do we have to do so you are comfortable applying for that next job?’

At the moment, the prediction is that it will take more than 40 years before corporate boards reach a 50-50 gender split. Those that will really thrive will recognise that this is the century of women in leadership …and make it happen.

Follow me: @LeaderShapeGreg

 

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LeaderShape CEO, Greg Young, is delighted to help break down barriers and build new heights as a judge for the European Women In Construction and Engineering awards. He will be available to meet at the Judging Day Forum, Thursday 21st April or the Awards Dinner Thursday 19th May . Find out about joining him  here.

 

References

* LEIPA – Leadership & Emotional Intelligence Performance Accelerator

1 in 3 Tech CEOs Don’t Think Gender Diversity Is Important 

When Women Thrive – report by Mercer 

 

 

 


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