Build your leadership platform

30th January 2016 |   Journal Of Sales Transformation

Annmarie Neal

Annmarie Neal is Chief Talent Officer, Hellman & Friedman LLC, and has held the same role in both Cisco Systems and First Data Corporation. She is also the founder of the Centre for Leadership Innovation. She explains how having a strong sense of self is probably one of the most essential traits of leadership.

There are several reasons why women are poorly represented in senior level positions. First, most organisations are poor at architecting systems that effectively identify, develop and promote pipelines of talent. Women lead differently to men – often in ways that are inclusive, collaborative and sharing of responsibility and credit – but this difference can be undervalued by senior men who seek to clone themselves in the C-suite or board room.

Second, we continue to carry the primary burden of caring for children particularly during those critical “on the rise” years of one’s career. Women often opt out: they see what it takes and often step away from corporate roles to pursue entrepreneurial adventures that give them more flexibility. And third, some industries and corporate functions are frankly unfriendly to women.

Build your own brand.

You’ll never get what you’re worth if you don’t understand what makes you uniquely valuable to your company. I authored a book called Leading from the Edge that explains how having a strong sense of self (knowing who you are and the value that you desire to create in the world) is probably one of the most important essential traits of leadership.