Several years ago I created a presentation I titled, Develop the Diva Within. The title met with hostility and resistance. To me it was mostly a fun alliteration. To many they either felt they were already a DIVA or did not want to become a DIVA.
Regardless of the title, the goal of the presentation was to help women see what I see: some things that get in their own way that they cause and that they can do something about. Probably more out of stubbornness than anything, I have resisted changing the title.
This past week events have unfolded that reminded me of women getting in their own way. It is true that women are underrepresented in leadership roles in NE Ohio. Even in Congress, while the media made a big to-do out of this incoming class, the clamor hides the fact that women are half of the population and less than a quarter of Congress. Yes after 100 years it is better. Better than bad is not good.
This past week events have unfolded that reminded me of women getting in their own way. A woman declined a leadership role because it was guaranteed for only six months. Really?
A woman declined a leadership role because she thought it was offered only on the basis of her gender. Really? (give me a contract that is based on my gender any day of the week)
A woman declined a leadership role because in six months it would be up for a vote. Really?
Yes it is true there are not enough women in leadership positions. But it is also true that not enough women put themselves in a position to advance. Sometimes leadership is unfair and sometimes leadership is ugly. But if you don’t show up, you can’t be there to find your next level of excellence.
I never win the lottery. But I don’t buy a ticket either. Can I complain?