Empowering the next generation of women leaders

Empowering the next generation of women leaders

By Carolyn Wensley, co-chair of the London+Acumen chapter

We all have special women surrounding us, be it our mothers, grandmothers, aunts, daughters, sisters and girlfriends, but they still experience the gender gap from the world of business to advancing women’s rights in emerging economies. They are also at the helm of emerging local economies, however the post-2015 Millennium Development Goals (MDG) have yet to take into account for any standalone goal for gender equality and women’s empowerment. One could argue that post-2015 MDGs should include women economic empowerment and access to both assets and financial capital.

This year at London+Acumen we held two events focusing on the leadership of women. At our first event ‘Women with Purpose’ we heard stories from high powered women who dare to change their industry and stand for something they believe in. Our speakers discussed the importance of women in their respective industries, the challenges they face in reaching success in their industry and how they overcame their challenges and what they would like to achieve going forward.

The second event ‘Leading Women’ (using the twitter hashtag #leadingwomen), looked at the importance of investing in women as leaders. The speakers shared their experiences in the development of other women as leaders, promoting equal opportunities and how different leadership cultures influence the power of investing in women. Here is a list of leadership tips for women that our speakers shared with us:

  • Have the courage to put yourself forward and lead with purpose
  • Do not be afraid to ask for help and feedback in order to be successful
  • Mentor, connect and surround yourself with those who can help you grow
  • Do no limit yourself, be willing to expand your horizons and embrace new challenges
  • Focus on what makes you happy and live your life according to your values
  • To start changing the world and start by changing someone’s world

While the tide is changing and more women are being recognised and promoted into leadership roles, there is still much work to do. It is not about changing roles it is about changing mindsets. Take a minute and think ‘who is your leading women?’ Is it a farmer, entrepreneur, CEO, a celebrity, a relative or a friend?

If you would like to learn more about our speakers, here is some information on them and the organisations they support and/or work for:

Additional resources: