5 Reasons Women Succeed as Bosses
Women’s role in the workforce evolves continually, adapting to changing values, viewpoints and opportunities. The impact of working women is now felt across all industries; especially in areas like accounting, technology, medicine, law and other fields traditionally dominated by men. Since 1970, women have made major gains overall, but their achievement as surgeons, pharmacists, lawyers and business leaders has cemented their place working alongside men – in all professions.
In 1970, for example, women accounted for about 37% of the total workforce, while today the number is closer to 47%. Leadership roles show an imbalance between the total numbers of men and women employed as upper-level managers and executives, but women are making strides in these areas as well.
In fact, women have skills and strengths of character that actually make them better bosses than their male counterparts in many cases.
Why do women succeed as bosses?
Because they are talented, dedicated professionals just like their male colleagues. But they also bring unique perspectives to leadership roles, prompting a closer look at what makes women succeed in high-profile career roles.
- Pragmatism and adaptability serve bosses. Women are programmed to set the stage for survival, so their ability to adapt and perform under a wide range of conditions furnishes an advantage in leadership roles. Problem-solving and conflict resolution are essential skills for managers and executives too, so the pragmatic tendencies hard-wired into women’s composition naturally lend themselves to being successful bosses. Employees relate to women who overcome adversity on the job, and respect their success guiding projects. Productivity and performance levels rise as staff respond to no-nonsense approaches, which come naturally to female bosses.
- Women are strong communicators. Business environments rely on clear communication of ideas and principles, in order to keep staffers on the same page – at all levels. Women excel at verbal and electronic communication, which empowers team members to get things done, rather than waiting around for clear directives. Yet women also embrace communication’s two-way nature, acting as better listeners than their male associates at times. Being receptive to what others share – whether they are clients or subordinate employees, enables a female boss to build consensus within her team, fostering a sense of responsibility among staffers. Using strong interpersonal communication, rather than issuing unilateral edicts nurtures trust and loyalty among clients and staff, who take away a sense of belonging that keeps them committed to the organization.
- Nurturing character sets women apart. Women play nurturing roles in families, which carry-over in positive ways on the job. Nurturing employee development, for example, helps women build strong teams of qualified workers. The increased productivity and employee satisfaction resulting from confident employees is a direct result of female bosses’ approaches to management. And individual projects and concepts also receive nurturing from women, who make personal investments in the work they do.
- Progressive innovation boosts returns. Progressive work environments benefit from diverse points of view and innovative thinking. Women bring unique perspectives to the table; especially to management roles where their authority to shape ideas is not restricted. Creativity and innovation are strong suits among women, who successfully respond to evolving markets and delegate effectively within their own organizations.
- Strong ethics and principles help women shine as bosses. The way bosses are perceived plays a big role in employee performance and productivity. Ethical divides, for example, create communication gaps between line-level employees and supervisors, which does not bode well for efficiency and productivity. Employees would rather work for someone they identify with, and studies show women are seen as being fairer and exhibiting higher principles. Their tendency to weigh the impact of decisions on all employees within an organization, rather than focusing on themselves, sets women apart in career leadership roles.
Sarah Brooks is a Houston-based freelance writer and blogger who works for PeopleSeach. Post any questions and comments, so Sarah can connect with you.