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Misconceptions about women and leadership in business
October 19, 2015, 1:18 pm

Women executives have often been portrayed in movies as being fearless, fierce, but also alone. However, this has always been a common misconception about women leaders running a company or business. Here are a few other misconceptions about women and leadership and the truth behind them.

Having and raising kids are hurdles to being a top executive: People think that being in a senior leadership role requires giving up a lot of family time. Maybe it is the reason women executives are portrayed as single and alone in movies. However, in reality, it is actually the opposite.

Those women who have risen to senior leadership roles are the ones who have a firm control of their schedules and have learnt how to find the balance between work and family time. After all, it takes a strong set of management skills to be able to manage two demanding aspects of life properly.

Women are not assertive when it comes to leadership style: People often associate assertiveness to confidence, but the two are not always mutually inclusive. Compared to men in senior leadership positions, women tend to be more grounded as they are more mindful of the risks and take these more into consideration before doing action plans. While this usually gets interpreted as lacking confidence, there is no definitive research that shows this is a conclusive basis for men and women with regard to their career moves.

Women do not help the career development of other women: There is the stereotype that exists saying women executives do not help other women with their careers, but this has no conclusive basis to be considered as actual fact. Statistics show that women leaders actually tap into their company’s talent pool to not only source women talents but a gender-diverse set of individuals to fill the needed roles.

Women are not interested in pursuing senior leadership positions:  Studies show that men advance four times more in their careers than their female counterparts. However, this does not always translate to women not aspiring to advance in their chosen careers or aiming to become an executive.

In the end, misconceptions should not define what women can or cannot do. After all, professionals, regardless of gender, are perfectly capable and free to define the parameters that matter to them with regard to their own success in their careers.

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