Diversity Woman Magazine

FAL 2017

Leadership and Executive Development for women of all races, cultures and backgrounds

Issue link: https://diversitywoman.epubxp.com/i/876458

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Page 10 of 79

d i v e r s i t y w o m a n . c o m Fa l l 2 0 1 7 D I V E R S I T Y W O M A N 9 I n this issue of Diversity Woman, we meet the most powerful women in Corpo- rate America. ese women have all risen to the C-suite of Fortune 500 com- panies—rarefied air indeed. Ceiling Crashers What's their secret? How did these women become so powerful? Many of us are wondering what we can do to replicate their success. e secret sauce doesn't lie in any one skill set or action—it's a combination of factors. roughout my career, and in research for my PhD, I've learned that it boils down to four essential steps. Be prepared: Proper planning is crucial. And it's never too early to start. Planning begins, as most things do, with education. is means not only having a college degree, but continuing training and education as you work your way up the ladder. No matter how accomplished we are, there is always more to learn! Build strategic relationships: rough- out every stage of your career—beginning in college—form strategic relationships. Find a mentor and a sponsor (and be a mentor and a sponsor to those working their way up the ladder). Join a variety of networks so you can meet many people who can help you advance your career. None of us can do it on our own. Engage in organizational culture: If we want to contribute significantly to our organization, while remaining true to our authentic selves, we need to join an organization that truly values diversity and inclusion. Sometimes this may mean making a tough choice—leaving one company for another with a more inclu- sive corporate culture. Develop executive traits: Leaders in the upper echelons share a set of traits, Publisher's Page > Leaders in the upper echelons share a set of traits, many of which can be learned. many of which can be learned. ey tend to be confident, assertive, resilient, and courageous, and display emotional intel- ligence. How does one gain these traits? One pathway is by working with a life coach. Read Tanisha Sykes's insightful article on page 33 about how a life coach can help you grow your career and enhance other aspects of your life. You can also join a company that emphasizes cultivating its workforce. One company that's figured out how to advance women in leadership positions and has embraced an inclusive culture is Cisco. In our Take the Lead department, learn how this Silicon Valley company is advancing millennials throughout the corporate structure. roughout my career journey, I have discovered that there is no silver bullet to crashing through the glass ceiling, but it can be done. Every one of us has the capability to reach the top tiers. I hope this issue will inspire and empower you to reach your highest goal. See you at the top! Dr. Sheila Robinson Publisher, Diversity Woman

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