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Women on Boards

  Nov 15, 2013
 

The members of the women in leadership program serve as key ambassadors to the women in leadership in general. This session focuses on creating gender equality and improves life in all various aspects especially in Boards.


Women are still few in the top level executive positions and on Board of Directors. One major light was shed onto why women should sit on boards


How to get on Boards? 3 Key points

-Start pro-bono. The intention of starting pro-bono is to target school boards, neighbourhoods, church organisations and volunteering for social causes. All these brings up the required experience and exposure for you to settle in other boards well enough.


-Let people around you know you are interested. This ascribed to the passiveness of women who want to enter into boards. Carol gave a key example where by a man would create any possible chance of letting his colleagues know that he wants the stipulated position, whether in the parking lot, passing by or even at a hang out joint!


-Don’t apologize for Networking. Networking creates recognition and exposure on business opportunities. Case in point: How will you get to know of vacant board seats without getting talk to people who might know of those vacancies? The answer is plain and simple; Networking. Make it a growing importance and key scope for your organisation and for you as a person.


Once you’re on Board.

Often, Board meetings are held frequently and only board members attend, however what do you do once you’re on board?


-Insist on an Induction. Inductions are the first steps towards gaining an employee’s commitment. In Carol’s words, she accorded inductions to interconnecting with everyone else in the organisation, which turns out to be beneficial in the long-run.?


-Read your board pack. In diminutive terms, understand what your board meeting is about even if it requires reading the whole agenda as a pass through.


-Actively seek feedback. This targets you especially. Gain pointer from your head and even if it is criticism, test out how you could still make a difference.


As Carol Musyoka concluded her session at the Women in Leadership Program, she shared highlights on how to deal with men in the boardroom and the qualities you need to integrate into your character in order to stride smoothly in the boardroom.


Carol mentions on drawing your lines with men especially when it comes to them maintaining their ego. Keep it strictly business. In line with character qualities, there was a number of these, e.g Keeping informed about ALL (or most) aspects of the board and the business. Become a subject matter expert by bringing in different expertise,like an alternative thinker (put in a measure of disagreements, although not all the time!). Be curious; through asking of questions that are attention-grabbing therefore bring something to the table other than your name, inclusive of your value and expertise.


Carol Musyoka, who was invited as guest speaker has over 10 years of financial leadership and legal experience working in Kenya and the United States. She has extensive deal origination, negotiation, structuring and execution experience, having been involved in several landmark corporate finance transactions in Kenya. She served as the Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer of K-Rep Bank, Kenya’s first micro finance institution. Prior to this, she was the Corporate Director, Barclays Bank Kenya.



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