Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Women Leaders: Are we too critical of each other?

Mayer and Sandberg
Marissa Mayer, CEO of Yahoo, and Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg have gotten a helluva lot of press lately:  Mayer made some tough decisions about axing the work-at-home option for 200 Yahoo employees.  Sandburg is speaking out about how women stand in the way of their own successes.

For a more thorough explanation, check out this article by Mashable.com:  http://mashable.com/2013/03/14/women-leaders-tech-criticism/?goback=%2Egde_4409416_member_223465958

Personally, I'm befuddled by this topic. There's nary a blink-of-an-eye when men climb over each other to get to the next rung on the ladder of success.  Men wouldn't dream of talking about how to be a "brother-friend" and "lifting each other up."  It's instead an "every man for himself" mentality that has a very long and well-established history in the business arena. 

So why are we asking women in (or aspire to be in) executive positions to behave or react any differently than their male counterparts?

Regardless of  the gender doing the speaking up, leaning in, or climbing over, there are benefits and consequences with which to deal as a result of being a leader.  Young professionals to be mentored.  Strategies to grow the company.  Connections to be made.  Opportunities to be provided.

Anyone who is passionate about moving his or her career forward must be uber-confident in their abilities, courage to speak their truth, have skin thick enough to endure the slings and arrows of critics, have rock-solid integrity to be guided by, and be absolutely fearless in the pursuit. 

QUESTION:  What's your stand on this topic?

(c)2013 Robyn M. Posson


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