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Women Leaders: Why They Succeed

  Sep 5, 2014

One of the most discussed topics in recent times has been Women in Leadership. This may be attributed to the fact that even as more women are ascending to leadership positions, they are becoming more aware of our different roles as women in modern times.

In her interview with Forbes contributor Glenn Llopis in March 2014, Maritza Montiel, Deputy CEO & Vice Chairman of Deloitte LLP indicated that women through the years have had to face multiple challenges, making them the world’s greatest multitaskers. ‘I think this is one reason why women succeed in business’ she reiterated. The ability of women to integrate managing resources with managing relationships is also a great contributor to the success demonstrated by women in leadership.

Developing women leaders has increasingly become mandatory for sustainable economic growth, global competitiveness and innovation across all industries. Usually women in leadership have proven effective leaders, a result that can be attributed to the need for them to ‘work twice as hard to get the same recognition’ as their male counterparts.

It is important to note that the leadership role is a challenging path for women to navigate. Because of the multiple roles that women play in society and especially in the workplace, it is not easy to achieve efficiency and effectiveness as a woman leader. It is in response to this that attention has been paid to helping women achieve excellence in all spheres of their lives.

Women in Leadership (WIL) program is one that has been developed by Strathmore Business School (SBS) to transform women into effective and efficient leaders. The program is geared towards helping women leaders to harness and manage their unique features so as to cause the required transformation to succeed as a woman in leadership. The common challenge has been how to attain a desirable work-life balance due to the earlier stated multiple roles that women play. Violet Kairu, Managing Director of Nairobi Bureau De Change, refers to the Strathmore Business School program as ‘“Truly inspiring, transformational and balancing. The program is a must for women in leadership who want to harness their talents and skills, thus achieving excellence in both the professional and personal domain.”

The Women in Leadership topic will continue to linger on as more women demonstrate the readiness to lead. With the increasing uptake of board membership and board leadership by women, the question therefore begs, is the society doing all it can to provide a support system for Women in Leadership to excel?

A woman’s motivation to lead must be backed by a supportive society to avoid disrupting the learning cycle that is necessary to developing a leader.

By Terry Kinyua- Women in Leadership Program Manager

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