Articles from Cass Knowledge

5 Pieces of Wisdom for International Women's Day 2022

The Bayes Global Women’s Leadership Programme seeks to inspire, equip and connect women who are leaders or aim to become leaders. We support women who want to grow and are seeking their unique version of success; a success that can go well beyond corporate or entrepreneurial leadership to include community involvement, mentoring and other initiatives.

Our past few years have seen an impressive set of skills workshops, speaker events and panel sessions. We’ve dug into the skills women can develop to become leaders, dug into cultural barriers to women’s leaderships, as well as new visions for achieving gender equality.

On International Women’s Day, we’d like to share some of our top five pieces of wisdom we’ve gained from our events:

1. The New Negotiation: Get in the driver’s seat

In our skills masterclass with negotiation expert and Honorary Visiting Professor Natalie Reynold, we learned her new negotiation technique.

She said: “Get in the driver’s seat and take the lead in the negotiation process. If your counterpart has offered you a deal that is far below what you were looking for, do not give their offer credibility by exploring it. Saying ‘no’ is an opportunity to refocus the negotiation and suggest a proposal that better suits you and also keeps your counterpart happy.”

Her further advice was to reframe your requests and what you are able to offer. She said: “Be solution-focused instead of barrier-focused: instead of saying what you can’t do, focus on what you are able to give your counterpart.”

Natalie Reynolds

2. Develop your executive presence: Take up space

In our skills workshop on executive presence with Susan Young, Co-Managing Director of City Academy and trainer Emma Wainer, we learned that making a strong leadership impression is a skill you can develop.

Emma said: “In leadership, you need intellectual skills and analytical skills, but it is vital to show these skills with your physical presence. The playing field is not level. I urge all women to stop asking for permission, to take up space and to create environments that encourage everyone to share their ideas.”

3. The privilege of power: Redress imbalances

Our panel event on leveraging power to create more equitable workplaces welcomed Rana Salhab, People & Purpose Partner at Deloitte Middle.

Redress imbalances

Rana said: “As we reach leadership positions, we must think not only of our authority but also of our influence across the board when trying to redress imbalances. In every project or new role, nominate women and minorities to join the initiative. Think of the hidden pool of people you can encourage to fill the role.”

4. Achieving professional success: Listen to your desire

GWLP Scholar Maria Banti, Executive MBA in Dubai, hosted a panel event on achieving professional success during the pandemic.

Counselling psychologist Dr Vassiliki Simoglou, of Thrive Wellbeing Centre, reminded the audience to listen to their intuition. She said: “Your desire is a motor that pulls you towards life. It draws you toward your purpose, sustains you and feeds your energy.”

5. Men supporting women: Become an ally

In a panel event on how men can be inclusive leaders and support women, we welcomed Pavita Cooper, Deputy Chair of the 30% Club. The event made it clear that supporting women into reaching leadership roles was not simply a matter of addressing equality, it also showed a positive financial ripple effect.

Pavita said: “Companies with women at senior levels responded better to the 2008 financial crisis and the pandemic. When companies go through difficult times, having more women on boards positively affects how decisions are made and the quality of the decisions.”

Find out more about the Global Women’s Leadership Programme.

Byline: Eve Lacroix, Marketing Executive and Global Women's Leadership Programme Executive Board Member, Bayes Business School