When someone interviews the highest-ranking woman in the history of the big four accounting firms, I sit up and take notice. Since few of my readers will see the interview that appeared in yesterday’s LA TIMES, here are the five insights that jumped out for me:
In a male-dominated profession, don’t mimic the men. Do things your own way. Remember, as my twin brother point out to me, “We enter the world as originals. Don’t die a copy”.
Promote yourself at work. Don’t assume that others know what you have done. Keep people well informed and talk about your contributions. (Very hard for women to do!)
Find a mentor and be a mentor. Remember, people throughout the organization can be mentors for different things. Ask for help.Find something you are passionate and do it. It’s the only way you will have energy to stay the course.
Know what is the non-negotiable in the rest of your life – whether it is a once-a-week date night with your best beloved or making 50% of your child’s ball games.
As I embark on a series of leadership programs for high potential women in both the public and private sector, the advice of this 57 year-old executive rings solid with my research. Putting it in action is what takes skill and courage!