5 Tips from the World’s most Powerful Female CEOs
Right now only 6% of Fortune 1000 CEO's are women! In order to help other women to reach the top of the corporate ladder, Korn Ferry Institute studied 57 women who are or have been CEO's of Fortune 1000 companies.
Together with the recruitment firm Rockefeller Foundation, Korn Ferry has identified 5 key findings that led women to become CEO. So if you are dreaming about becoming a CEO, then these 5 tips might come in handy!
1. Skip liberal arts and study STEM
According to the study 40% of the women interviewed had college degrees in science, engineering or math. Less than half of that studied arts and humanities or economic and finance. Having a STEM background helped the women prove that they could make it in a male-dominated field. It also had the added benefit of leading the women into careers where results were measurable, in black and white, making it easy to be noticed.
2. Seek P&L experience
The study shows that having an experience owning a profit and loss statement is a beneficial factor in becoming a CEO. Managing a budget or running a P&L is something women haven’t historically had access or encouragement to do. If there is an opportunity to get hands-on with the financial side of business a woman should seize it. This is more important than seniority or facetime with the Company's current CEO, the study shows.
3. Shake off sexism
According to the study, women who become CEO have a high resilience when it comes to sexism. Even though many of the women in the survey had experienced sexism, they all found a way to overcome it - whether by staying positive and upping their dedication or by moving on.
4. ‘Package’ yourself
Another important lesson? Results aren’t enough to become CEO. Good work will not automatically get you noticed. A woman needs to package herself as a potential CEO. Especially when networking with high-up executive and board members or seeking out mentors and advocates. And also when acting the part of a leader with team members and subordinates.
5. Be ready to say ‘yes’
The study shows that 65% of female CEO's might never have gotten the job if someone hadn't told them they were eligible, because they would never have considered themselves to be. Most importantly when being noticed as a potential CEO is the response, it is important to be ready to say yes.