Queen Elizabeth was the ultimate CEO. She was head of the “firm” (as they call the monarchy) for 70 years.
When she became Queen in 1952, she was regarded as too young, inexperienced, and not ready to lead both the country and their overseas territories.
She prevailed and became one of the most successful royal leaders in history.
(Message to self: Ignore the naysayers, never give up on your dreams!)
Royalty has always known that women can lead, going back to Nefertiti, Cleopatra, Queen Victoria, Catherine the Great and many more.Royalty has always known that women can lead, going back to Nefertiti, Cleopatra, Queen Victoria, Catherine the Great and many more. Click To Tweet
Women Leaders In The Green Industry
I can’t say the same for the green industry. We have many strong female leaders, but our industry still has barriers–even if inadvertent.
The good news is: We are heading in the right direction.
I find myself coaching more women business owners than ever before! And during this year’s Summer Growth Summit the crowd was the most diverse ever.
Our industry associations are taking steps, for example:
- Setting up women’s groups for networking.
- Diversifying their Boards.
- Promoting Female Presidents.
Ironically, We will know we have “made it” when women no longer need women’s groups in order to feel like they have a place to be themselves.
You Can Take Action In Your Business And Community To Remove The Glass Ceiling
(This list is from my client, Shanna Scordo, President of EarthCraft Design-Build-Maintain, PA)
- Form a women’s group for students looking to go into the industry. Be their mentor, and show them how to set themselves up to win. (This relationship-building also doubles as a great recruitment strategy.)
- Don’t spread out the women in your company: Try to let them work together. This can help them find their voice and step into their power.
- Ask women what they need, and ask what problems, challenges, or barriers exist in your company. Be willing to hear hard truths. Don’t be afraid to have uncomfortable conversations, and then engage them in the problem-solving.
- It’s too easy for a woman to get spoken over in a group of men. Keep a watchful eye, and when your female employee has a good idea, you can advocate for her to be heard.
- Become aware of your own “unconscious biases” towards women’s abilities (even women have these). Get feedback.It's too easy for a woman to get spoken over in a group of men. Keep a watchful eye, and when your female employee has a good idea, you can advocate for her to be heard. Click To Tweet
Your Challenge: Help Everyone Find Their Voice
Be It Your Front Line, Women, Hispanic Workers, etc.
This is not altruistic. It helps the industry as a whole to staff and grow.
I am going to put my money where my mouth is. I plan to roll out a women’s networking group within my client community, to foster support and momentum toward a more successful industry.
Stay tuned to learn more about this.
Regards, Jeffrey Scott