An astounding report released by KPMG points out the massive gap between women’s aspirations for leadership, and their self-confidence about achieving them.
The KPMG Women’s Leadership Study surveyed more than 3,000 U.S. women ages 18-64, to gauge if their sample is ready to become the leading ladies of their organizations as well as their lives.
While 6 in 10 women expressed their desires to reach the pinnacles of their respective professions, the same ratio emerged when they were asked if they considered themselves capable of achieving their leadership goals. 56 percent of these women said that they would tread lightly, be overly cautious, and not directly grab for promotions and higher level roles in their organizations.
This lack of confidence spills on to various other activities in a woman’s professional life that ensure her progress and growth: 92 percent women said they do not feel confident asking for sponsors, and 79 percent even admitted to hesitating before asking a senior to become a mentor.
Other activities that entailed reaching for more also saw the woman performing poorly – like 76 percent feeling scaed to approach senior leadership, 73 percent not pursuing a job opportunity beyond their experience, 69 percent not asking for a career path plan, 65 percent not being able to seek out a promotion or raise.
Stressing the need for gender diversity in top level management, KPMG Global Chairman John Veihmeyer said that it is important every woman aim higher, because their contribution to higher level decision making is invaluable.
“Every organization is stronger when its leadership has diverse perspectives and experiences to draw from. It is critically important for the business community to look at the challenges women often face in the workplace, and take action to clear the path for talented and dynamic leaders to rise and inspire new generations,” he said in the KPMG Press release.
“The insights from female professionals across the American business landscape, as well as women on the cusp of entering the workforce in our study, offer valuable lessons about moving more women into leadership roles,” he added at the KPMG Women’s Leadership Summit.
The brand new CEO of the US operations of KPMG, Lynne Doughtie shared that this lack of confidence emerges and festers from the start of their careers. Hence, building or rebuilding this confidence is key. “Reinforcing confidence can go a long way in helping to bridge the gap between the aspiration to lead and ultimately becoming a leader,” said the new woman leader on the block.
Source: KPMG Press Release
Image Credits: HuffingtonPost