This article by Hetty Einzig appeared in The Guardian ‘Women in Leadership’, 17 March 2016:
It’s time to stop following outdated models of leadership and embrace a culture that works for women, not just men
Women leaders lack self-confidence, right? Well, yes and no. Certainly it seems every woman wants more of it. It is universally the main desired outcome from the women in leadership programmes we run. And I’d be rich if I had a pound for every time a woman says sorry.
Perhaps it’s just a British thing but apologising for speaking seems to have become a national female tic. Over the years of coaching women leaders I was first astonished then tired of hearing the same refrain: “I wish I was more self-confident.” Then I stopped believing it. I came to see it as an acceptable veil for a host of other issues – disappointment, frustration, fear and fury. I’ve come to realise we are asking the wrong questions and chasing the wrong goals.
The question we should be asking is not why aren’t women more confident or brave but what is it about our workplaces that dampen women’s fire? The answers certainly don’t lie in some female genetic confidence deficit…
Women need to understand power, how it differs from authority and how it is played to suppress and manipulate.