Barracuda Events: “Female leaders dispute the existence of the glass ceiling”

Following the success of “What Glass Ceiling?” our recent retail executives event for female MDs and CEOs, we brought together a select group of senior HR executives to share the key findings from that event, where interestingly it was felt that the glass ceiling for women does not actually exist.

We were delighted that Christine Cross, one of the retail industry’s most experienced board members, was able to join us once again to lead the discussion on the topic of gender leadership challenges and to explore the acceleration of diversity in retail leadership.

The open table debate that followed was lively, with the following key themes emerging;

  • In terms of defining attributes in leadership, women are good at competence and cadence, but less so at conviction and courage.
  • Gender discrimination in the workplace may be somewhat of a myth; the bias develops in females at an early age perceiving their roles in life/work to be less important than their male counterparts. There is therefore a need for early education about capability and aspiration to prevent restricting ambition.
  • Leadership is not about gender.
  • The wider diversity piece should be considered at the same time as gender.
  • Good leadership is about being self-aware and building strong teams to complement gaps in knowledge.
  • Line managers of young female talent need to understand how to foster confidence in their team to enable them to grow and operate in a sometimes largely political environment, so that they have the confidence to step up to leadership roles.
  • The challenge around smaller female talent pools in middle management is natural, don’t fight it.
  • Quotas should not be allowed to interrupt or limit the flow of talent.

Barracuda Group would like to thank all of the attendees for their contribution and particularly Christine whose scene-setting made for such a successful event, evidenced by the excellent feedback received.

To find out about this, or any of our other events, please contact Katie Ryalls, Marketing Manager