4 essential skills for women to climb the corporate ladder

Women in the corporate world walk a tightrope between work and life all the time. The redeemer for them is to be the best and have best of both worlds.

In a High-Tea career chat session by TimesJobs on ‘Be the Best: How Women Can Have Best of Both Worlds’, Anuradha Aggarwal, CMO, Marico, said, “There is always one side of you that you are aware of as being more prominent. Ask yourself what gives you more satisfaction. Manage the other side but excel in the one that you like more.”

On being queried about the changes one should bring in to get the best of both worlds, she highlighted that working women already have best of both worlds as they are managing their personal and professional aspirations.

To be the best, one should have the desire to have both kinds of ambitions. “Be yourself, learn from people around you, find a role model/mentor, absorb from them and keep learning. Be ambitious but have a long term view of your career. Ask for feedback and leverage your strengths” she added.

Advising new moms who are planning to join back the workforce, Aggarwal mentioned the following essential skills for women to rise in corporate ladder:

  1. Skills:Keep yourself current in your sphere of work. Many women do not read current affairs and lose the edge on skills.
  2. Competency:Know yourself, ask for feedback and sharpen your strengths to become assets.

3.Network: Organisations are all about people. Make a professional network. It is a                   critical asset for progress.

  1. Raise your hand:When opportunities do not present themselves, ask for them.

Apart from above-mentioned skills, influence is the one muscle that we must develop the most to be a successful leader. “This is true for men and women alike. Women leaders must make a network of stakeholders, people who would be in the right roles to make decisions or impact decisions. And actively engage with the stakeholders without an agenda,” advised Aggarwal.

Challenges women should be ready to face to grow as leaders

According to Aggarwal, as you grow senior, the pyramid narrows. The competition becomes fierce for the top slot. Every leader must be ready to inspire their teams to create success.

“We also have to be ready to manage greater uncertainty and risk. Women have to be aware that if there are fewer of them at the top, people they are engaging with may never have worked with senior women leaders. We must understand the world view of those around us and manage it on a case-to-case basis. After a while, merit and influence are all that matter.”

Source: SHRM

Date: 18-03-2016

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