A groundbreaking Australian study based on years of gender reporting to the federal Workplace Gender Equality Agency, has shown that companies that appointed a female CEO, boosted their market value by 5%. When the number of women in key leadership positions reached or exceeded 10%, the company’s market value increased by 6.6%.

This study proves that women are exceptional assets to business, yet many women lack the self-confidence to advance to leadership positions. Internal obstacles often hold them back, they include our desire to be liked; our insecurity about speaking-up during meetings; or our lack of confidence in our skills and expertise.

Thinking like a leader begins by building an internal framework and developing guiding principles that give us the confidence to be decisive, and the clarity to remain focused on our goals.

Develop your success strategy:
• Build a solid foundation by assessing your skills. Make a list of everything you are good at.
• Identify ways to build on your strengths to improve your performance.
• Demonstrate your capabilities — volunteer to take on responsibilities that utilize your strengths.
• Find a mentor or a coach to help you minimize mistakes and overcome challenges.
• Build a support group of allies who will keep you focused on your goals and encourage you in seeking challenges and overcoming barriers.

Develop your personal brand:
• Respond to voicemail and email messages in a timely manner.
• Complete projects on time. If something comes up that will make it impossible to meet the deadline, inform the other party and agree on a revised due date.
• Follow-up when a project has been completed, send a brief email to confirm that it is done.
• Take on additional responsibilities that will allow you to demonstrate your leadership skills.
• Develop your emotional intelligence and your ability to get along well with others. Excellent interpersonal skills will also increase the likelihood that you will be given a leadership role.
• Publicize your accomplishments to teams, key managers and executive personnel.

Branding yourself as an effective, reliable, productive employee is among the most valuable strategies to advance your career.


About Your Columnist

Kimberlee Centera, CEO, TerraPro Solutions is a featured columnist for Women Lead, the official blog of Connected Women of Influence. Kimberlee is a leading risk management expert for the development and financing of utility scale renewable energy projects. She is a contributor to North American Clean Energy and the Norton Rose Fulbright Currents Podcast. Kimberlee has been a guest on numerous radio programs including National Public Radio’s Marketplace. She frequently serves as a speaker and educator at wind and solar conferences.


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