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Breaking the Glass Ceiling: Inspiring Lessons from Female Business Leaders

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Becoming a business leader requires much more than hard work, courage, and conviction. You have to give up on a lot of things to achieve your vision and goals. The journey can be even more challenging if you are a woman. Despite the growing emphasis on gender equality, the ground reality is that it is still a man’s world. As a woman entrepreneur, you will have to break the glass ceiling to be at par with your male counterparts.

The struggle seems huge, but there are many inspiring success stories of female CEOs and leaders to show you the way. Taking the right approach and mindset can help you navigate the complex road and reach your goals, even while balancing the roles of a homemaker, mother, and entrepreneur perfectly. Let us share some actionable lessons and insights from successful female business leaders.

Focus on the Tasks at Hand

The biggest challenge that women in the business face are the need to switch between roles. She is a wife and mother at home and a top-level executive at work, and both roles are equally crucial. The best advice is to focus on the tasks at hand rather than be everywhere at the same time. It is easy to get distracted as you think about an important meeting on the dinner table or have your kid’s school assignment on top of your mind at work. To be successful, you need to draw clear lines and keep home and work separately. Focus your energy on completing the priorities for the day, and you will be able to handle all your roles seamlessly.

Don’t Trade Personal Values for Financial Ambitions

In business, there’s always an easy way, but it comes at a cost. You will probably have to compromise personal values to achieve your financial ambitions. If you believe that family comes first, let it be your rule throughout your career journey. Remember that the shortest route isn’t often the right one. Successful women in business opt to take the longer and harder route because success is always sweeter when they reach the goal. Hold tight to your personal values and beliefs and let them guide your way along the journey. Leverage them as the force that drives you ahead. You will be a proud leader when you reach the top, and all the hard work will seem worthwhile.

Own Your Time

CEOs and top executives often lose hold over time and end up without a work-life balance. It is important to own your time because you cannot stretch the day beyond 24 hours. A woman needs to go the extra mile to take the reins on her time. There will always be a tug-of-war between home and work, but you have to ensure a balance between them. Good time management is the magic formula. If you are most productive in the morning, pick the challenging work during those hours so that you have more time to sort out the rest during the day. Be mindful about taking time off from home and work because you need to focus on yourself too.

Invest in Personal Growth

Successful people never stagnate. They prioritize personal growth, even as they reach the top accolades and achieve their career goals. Women in business must make conscious efforts to invest in learning and growth, even if it may seem like an option. Exploring CEO mentor programs is a good idea as they make you smarter with strategic decisions at work. You may need to devote time and effort to take such development programs, but they can make you a smarter leader who can steer an organization in the right direction. A mentor plays the role of a guide as they can understand your personal challenges as a woman and show you the way to overcome them.

Empower Others

While you can look for a mentor to help you with personal growth, you must also be willing to help others who want your guidance. Women CEOs and leaders are often the best mentors because they are more empathic than men. As you lead your team, look around and recognize the talent in people. Nurture them by providing opportunities to learn and grow. By empowering others, you set up your business for success. It drives retention, which plays a significant role in organizational success. The efforts to empower others shouldn’t be confined to your workplace. Help your partner and children to grow, and do your bit for the community as well.

Have Your Own Yardstick of Business Success

Women entrepreneurs often have to battle with prejudices and self-esteem issues because it is easy to believe that they aren’t good enough. It happens because you follow the traditional measurements of success which are made by men and for men. If you want to break the glass ceiling, create your own yardstick of business success that works for you. Profits and numbers are important in the business world, but they aren’t everything. Take things in a stride and use a balanced approach to measure success.

Pay Attention to Self-Care

Life isn’t easy for a woman who has to multi-task because handling the stress of running a home and a business is daunting. You must pay attention to self-care as it can keep you sane amid the everyday pressure of your work and life. Be kind to yourself and stop expecting too much. Even the most successful CEO can create disasters in the kitchen and have parenting fails, so learn from your mistakes. Exercise, meditation, and mindful eating help you to stay in top shape. Seek support from your partner and spend time with your friends to stay calm and grounded.

These simple lessons from women business leaders stem from their real experiences. Implementing them can make life a lot easier and set you up for success as a CEO, homemaker, and parent. The best part is that these lessons are easy to imbibe and make a part of your life. Follow them, and you can achieve everything you want in all your roles.

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