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A Good Woman is Hard to Find – Or Is She?

September 20, 2011

A recent Conference Board of Canada study shows that women’s advancement to the top echelons of business came to a dead-halt in the mid-1980s. It has been stalled ever since.

As someone who works closely with women executives at Potential Unlimited, this report disturbed me. We have alll seen the studies that show having a diverse senior management team and Board help increase results. So what is happening here with women leaders? This month, I was featured in The Globe and Mail national newspaper’s Business section in an article about female leaders busting through the glass ceiling.

I am extremely passionate about helping more women leaders break the glass ceiling. As such, I have created my WOMEN IN LEADERSHIP program for leaders and high potentials to provide them with the support they need as well as proven models to improve their corporate performance. An important part of this program is the work I do with participants to teach them techniques to go the distance in their careers by building better work-life balance. A happy leader is a productive leader. The WOMEN IN LEADERSHIP program also includes a retreat held at the fabulous destination fitness spa, Red Mountain Resort, St.George, Utah. Right now, this leadership program is being offered at an amazing introductory price. Sign up today to take advantage of this great deal!

E-mail me at to receive Potential Unlimited’s FREE Tips Report for Women Leaders and Rising Stars.

The Globe and Mail Story

Breaking your own glass ceiling

LEAH EICHLER | Columnist profile

From Saturday, September 17, 2011, The Globe and Mail
Following the movements of C-suite women has become a spectator sport. When former Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz received her now infamous phone call, professional women started counting the number of females they knew who still occupied the top ranks.

“Who is left in technology?” asked one panicked participant at a recent networking event for women in digital media. We almost need female CEO trading cards to keep track.

Our Time to Lead  -Women in Power

There’s good reason to follow the women who successfully made it to the top echelons of companies – they act as necessary role models for the rest of us. But dwelling on numbers suggests there are dark forces at work keeping women down, whereas the explanation may lie with women themselves.

After years of navigating the corporate world, some women come to realize that their values are not in sync with striving for the C-suite. They ask themselves, “Do I really want to be CEO?” Often, the answer is no.

Carey-Ann Oestreicher hit her stride as a corporate executive by the age of 28. By her early 30s, she was vice-president of business development and communications in the financial services industry, earning herself a nomination for Canada’s Most Powerful 100 Women Award. After the birth of her second child, however, she realized her role no longer suited her personal values and left to launch her own career-development firm.

“Independence is essential in my work life,” Ms. Oestreicher explains. “Having the freedom to control my own schedule is an amazing benefit. Although I work harder as a business owner than I ever have in my life, I love every minute of it.”

The common explanation for the absence of women at the top – that they bow out of the work force to raise families and return to their careers at a much diminished level – feels simplistic. Some women simply come to the realization that their goals have changed.

“Many educated women don’t just want to toe the party line,” says psychologist Susan Pinker, author of The Sexual Paradox and a Globe and Mail columnist. She adds that men are more likely to put their head down and keep their eye on the prize, while women bristle in an environment that they may find unsupportive or unfulfilling. Read more…

Oestreicher was also featured in Canadian Underwriter Magazine with her tips for helping other women break the glass ceiling at their companies. Read more

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