How to be an Assertive Woman in Leadership

Leadership Freak


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She said, “Violating gender stereotypes,” in response to, “What unique challenges do women in leadership experience.” I asked the question at the beginning of a presentation for a Woman’s Business Consortium.


When a woman is assertive she’s bossy and resented.  She’s bitchy. But, when a man is assertive he’s powerful and admired. He gets things done.


Men can be men but women must be both.

If a woman wants to get ahead in a man’s world, there’s pressure to be like a man. To get ahead you must conform. A high-level woman in a large corporation told me she was encouraged to wear fewer dresses and more pant suits.

Catch 22:

Men are liked because they are competent. Women, on the other hand, are either perceived as competent or liked.  (Catalyst research) In our culture, it’s easier to like a woman who is less competent.


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