"Even when CEOs make gender diversity a priority—by setting aspirational goals for the proportion of women in leadership roles, insisting on diverse slates of candidates for senior positions, and developing mentoring and training programs—they are often frustrated by a lack of results. That’s because they haven’t addressed the fundamental identity shift involved in coming to see oneself, and to be seen by others, as a leader.
Research shows, the authors write, that the
subtle “second generation” gender bias still present in organizations
and in society disrupts the learning cycle at the heart of becoming a
leader. Women must establish credibility in a culture that is deeply
conflicted about whether, when, and how they should exercise authority."
Authors Herminia Ibarra, Robin Ely, and Deborah Kolb http://hbr.org/2013/09/women-rising-the-unseen-barriers/ar/1 outline the case that organizations should take three steps to promote gender
diversity: educate women and men about second-generation gender bias, create
safe "identity workspaces" for women, and encourage women to define their
development in relation to leadership purpose rather than gender stereotypes. This topic is one of increasing importance in the 21st Century workplace and the authors have added thoughtful insight to the debate.