The added value of women leaders: competence, humility, integrity Chamorro-Premuzic, T. (2019). TEDx, University of Nevada

The added value of women leaders: competence, humility, integrity Chamorro-Premuzic, T. (2019). TEDx, University of Nevada

As an executive search and board recruitment specialist, I meet brilliant women leaders every day: professionals with outstanding track records and extraordinary potential. Yet all too often they are confronted with a sly inner voice whispering to them: 'you're not good enough', 'you don't belong'. Let's face it, this may seem all too true in a system that promotes confidence, narcissism, and charisma.

Companies know that diversity improves performance. Yet the gender gap in leadership persists. It is essential that we prioritise traits perceived as “feminine” in the way we recruit and develop leaders.

Why? According to social psychology professor Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic, traits such as confidence, narcissism and charisma are still used as benchmarks in corporate recruitment and promotion. Yet there is a disconnect between these attributes, which are intuitively attractive in a leader, and the ones that are necessary to be an effective leader today: competence, humility, and integrity. And women score better on these indicators, says Chamorro-Premuzic.

Conclusion: in order to ensure effective leadership and close the gender gap, companies need to promote competence, humility, and integrity rather than confidence, narcissism, and charisma. It is high time to change the recruitment and promotion system. And as a woman, what better way to do this than by being on the inside of the system, rather than on the outside?

How can women change the system from within?

By taking their careers into their own hands and getting into leadership positions, women can influence internally, from the very heart of organisations. But how? By daring to succeed; making the conscious choice not only to create a good career plan but also to implement it well.

This is why, at the heart of Amrop Luxembourg's "Lead Your Career, Dare to Succeed!" programme, we work with women leaders to help them change their perspective and take charge of their career.

7 axes of development

1. Dare to Succeed: understand that you have the power over your career. Integrate wise and conscious choices into a career plan and execute it.

2. Be aware: identify what is needed to succeed at your level in your organisation and the behaviours/strategies that can support or block your goals.

3. Make your own choices: decide what messages you send to yourself, and how you allow others to influence your beliefs and boundaries.

4. Actively develop your potential: adopt a positive growth mindset rather than relying on your organisation.

5. Make your contribution visible: identify the barriers that prevent you from not only increasing your contribution to the organisation, but also making it visible.

6. Build key relationships: get to know others in an authentic way, for mutually rewarding results.

7. Influence with impact: The ability to influence the organisation becomes more important as you progress in your career. It is important to reconcile your values (e.g. humility) with the way you promote yourself within the organisation.

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