Disclaimer: Please note that all commentary and opinions provided in this interview are those of the individual and not the organisation/company they are employed by.
What is one lesson you learnt the hard way?
Being able to say ‘no’ and realising that it doesn’t mean you are letting someone down or being selfish or are unable to cope. Saying ‘no’ means being clear on what are your true priorities. Saying ‘no’ doesn’t mean people will not like you or look down on you. In fact, I think the opposite is true. Friends and colleagues will have more respect for you and you will gain self-confidence. Knowing when to say ‘no’ can protect your health, your quality of life and your relationships with other people.
How can female leaders ensure they get a seat at the table?
Firstly, I think you need to believe that you deserve a seat at the table. Then I think to be seen as credible you should consider how knowing your business and your function well, means that you are confident to speak up and offer insights or solutions, not just in your functional area of expertise but as a proactive senior adviser to the business. Finding advocates, either men or women, that will encourage you, provide feedback, and champion your skills, can help open opportunities for you too.
What has held you back in your career to date and how did you come to overcome that barrier?
Unfortunately, self-doubt has distracted me. This has stopped me applying for roles that I could have done but didn’t have all the required skills and experience. I’ve also been unforgiving of myself when I’ve made a mistake, expecting perfection always. And I’ve sometimes not spoken up or put myself forward because I’ve questioned my ability. I have learned to not place so much pressure and expectation on myself and to believe that I’m more than good enough. I’m also trying to take more leaps of faith and be consistent about promoting myself and being seen.
Click below to read the full edition of IWD2021 #ChooseToChallenge: Female Leaders Across The Globe.