To Win: BE – Not Do

Two sides of the long-standing debate about advancing women in the workplace are:

  1. Fix the workplace
  2. Fix the women

From my perspective, it’s not about fixing. It’s about taking advantage of opportunities.

Around the world, workplaces and data about the most impactful leadership styles are changing. The point of the matter is, as Angel Gurria, secretary-general of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development. put it, “Women are the most underutilized economic asset in the world’s economy.” If we want the global economy to thrive, we will need to figure out how to enable more women to lead and participate in the world’s workforce.

At the recent Lean In Circle of which I am part, Maria Flynn, CEO of Orbis Biosciences, eloquently captured the opportunity we have to “win at the game while simultaneously changing how it’s played.”

“Women cannot win if they are not first on the playing field. To change the rules of the game women have to be the owners, coaches & captains of teams.”

Here at The Way Women Work, we focus on getting more women around the world on the field while others focus on changing the game. It is not that we believe that there is something “wrong” with women that needs fixing. Rather, we believe that women cannot win if they are not first on the playing field. More importantly, we believe that to change the rules of the game, women have to be the owners, coaches, and captains of more teams.

Here are a few “Must Be’s” versus “Must Do’s” that I regularly discuss with the women (and men) I coach who want to lead:



  • Strategic – in thought and action – about your business, your job, and your career
  • Confident and comfortable with power
  • Forward thinking and positive about what is possible
  • Productive
  • A Learner
  • Centered – emotionally, in perspective, and in life

See you out on the playing field!

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