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The WATT® Report



 

Welcome - March, 2011

Welcome to The WATT® Report, your resource for news and advice to help you get ahead. As a member of the Women at the Top® Network, you'll receive this monthly e-newsletter the first Wednesday of every month.
 
In Case You Missed It 

Each month we'll round up a few of the most interesting reads we've found to help you stay informed. This month's picks are: 
 
Fact: Sixty-four percent of executives surveyed by Booz & Company say their biggest frustration factor is having too many conflicting priorities. In fact, most executives - regardless of industry - felt that their companies lack "coherence."
 
"Linking priorities to decisions is a hurdle that few companies get past," says Paul Leinwand, coauthor with Cesare R. Mainardi of The Essential Advantage: How to Win with a Capabilities-Driven Strategy. (Read More)
 
Study: Self-aware 'masculine' women get more promotions at work, according to a recent study by George Mason University. "Although masculine women are seen as more competent than feminine women, they are also seen as less socially skilled and, consequently, less likeable and less likely to get promoted," says Olivia O'Neill, assistant professor in Mason's School of Management.
 
What's the best way to handle this Catch-22?  O'Neill says, "Our research shows that self-monitoring this behavior can have beneficial effects for masculine women, leading to more promotions and success in the workplace."(Read More)
 
Quote: "Investments in women can yield a significant 'gender dividend' both from women as workers and as consumers. This is all about the steady benefit that can accrue from wise, balanced investments in developing women as employees and into leadership roles as well as understanding women as consumers and their impact on the economy and the bottom line." - Heather Hancock, managing partner at Deloitte.
 
 
Four Ways to "Own" Your Power
 
Have you ever looked around and wondered, gee, why aren't there more women in senior level positions? According to Catalyst.org, a research organization on women in leadership, there is clearly a dearth of women at the top levels when looking at Fortune 500 companies. Only 13.5% of Executive Officer positions are held by women and only 14.6% of Corporate Board Seats are held by women. 
 
There are many reasons why this may happen tha are outside of our control, but often as women we get in our own way when it comes to owning our own power. Here's what we do.
 
Women DON'T define and ask for what they want.
Unfortunately, many women don't really know what they want, and as a result, many women are reactive versus proactive when it comes to managing their career. Because they don't know what they want, they do very little planning and are unprepared when opportunities come along. When opportunities do arise, women fail to recognize or miss chances to negotiate. Ask for not only what you need but for what you want.


Women DON'T believe in themselves.

When asked in a documentary what led to his success, Starbuck's CEO, Howard Schultz, who grew up in a Bronx tenement in New York, said that the single biggest factor in his success was his BELIEF in himself. Yet, sad to say, many women lack that innate belief in themselves. How can women shift that mindset? Take a lesson from Rebecca Macieira-Kaufman, President of Citibank California, who said, "Don't underestimate yourself. Do a great job at whatever you do. Producing fantastic results means you'll have more opportunities." Why is this key? When you do a fantastic job, you receive more positive recognition. When you receive more positive recognition, it adds to your confidence. When you feel more confident, you receive more opportunities. The next thing you know, you start to believe in yourself. When you believe in yourself, so do others. The takeaway? Believe in yourself. It's that simple.
 

Women DON'T support each other.  
There's a phrase for how women don't support each other. It's called TPS and it stands for Tall Poppy Syndrome. This term is used frequently in the United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand to describe situations where a successful person - also called a Tall Poppy - is prone to verbal attacks, jealousy, criticism and other disparaging behavior.  Their crime? Being recognized or elevated above their peers because of their accomplishments or talents. As a result, they get a lot of backlash. In the United States, this type of disapproval is typically reserved for one particular group: successful women - those who have dared to step out of the narrow confines of success that our society dictates for us. And unfortunately, it's often other women standing in the wings ready to trip us up or take us out! Next time you have an opportunity to reach out and support another woman, do it!

Women DON'T make themselves visible.
Despite several decades in the work force, subconsciously or not, women are still working hard to blend in. Yale law professor Kenji Yoshino, author of Covering: the Hidden Assault on Our Civil Rights, says women in the workplace practice what he calls "covering" - down playing aspects of themselves that they think may be viewed as less acceptable in the workplace. He says this "covering" is what may be holding many groups back, including women. In a recent Verizon Wireless commercial, a person is getting ready to step into a conference room and the voiceover on the commercial says, "You're not there to take up space. You're there to fill the room."  The same holds true for you. Make yourself visible.

Now more than ever we need talented, successful women to step out, step up and take charge. Today's take-away: step up and OWN your power.  Someone needs to stand head and shoulders above the rest, and quite frankly, why shouldn't it be you?
 
Have a tip that helped you be more successful as a leader? Please share your ideas with us at or visit the WATT® Blog, www.theWATTblog.com. 
 
 
This Month
 
Dial up Your LeadershipTM with these WATT® programs and events.
  
February 28 - March 4th
Women at the Top® Virtual Leadership Conference: Re-Energize Your Career!
Get the tools and inspiration you need to help re-energize YOUR career! Join us for the second annual Women at the Top® Virtual Leadership Conference: Re-Energize Your Career! The conference features 21 leadership experts in five core development areas presented over the course of five days. Registration is FR*EE. (Learn More)
 
March 10th
Five Ways to Fire Up Your Professional Development & Re-Energize Your Career! Join Regina Barr for this content rich call to learn practical information and inspiration to stand tall and take charge of your professional development right now. Registration is FR*EE. (Register Now)
 
April 28th
Author Interview with Carol Frohlinger.  This 45 minute call will feature an interview with Carol Frohlinger, co-author of Nice Girls Just Don't Get It: 99 Ways to Win the Respect You Deserve, The Success You've Earned and the Life You Want.  Carol will share proven strategies women can use to deal with just about anyone. Registration is FR*EE. (Register Now)
 
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