Welcome To The Elevate Talent Blog!
For the last 10 years, we’ve made it our goal to coach, inspire and elevate women in the corporate world, with a focus on the area that is frequently overlooked – women in the mid-level position.
This new blog series is for them and the senior leaders who contribute to their growth.
We launched Elevate Talent in 2016 because we noticed a different problem affecting the world of women in business.
Whilst progress was being made and continues to be made with women at the senior leadership level, there was still a long way to go to reach that sought-after equal representation.
So, what are we missing here?
Not enough focus on the pipeline
Most organisations are looking at ways to increase female representation at senior levels.
But from our perspective, to put it very simply, this is a numbers game. The more women coming up through the pipeline at that mid-level position, the more female senior leaders you will have at the end.
Sounds simple, right?
The problem is that there hasn’t been nearly enough spotlight on the pipeline itself. It seems all the focus is at the senior level, with very little focus at the middle level.
That’s why we created Elevate Talent, and that’s why we are writing these blogs!
It’s our goal to shine a light on this area that has been left unchecked for too long, and take a look at what we can be doing to help inform, inspire and elevate more mid-level women.
The two schools of thought
Traditionally, there have been two schools of thought on how we can solve this problem:
- Company culture needs to shift
Company structure to evolve full stop. We are well into the 21st century now, but we are still clinging on to how things have always been done. Organisations are still overwhelmingly male dominated cultures which unsurprisingly doesn’t work for women OR the 21st century challenges and opportunities.
To get the best out of people, a new leadership approach is required.
- Women are not getting what they need
None of us gets to where we want to go without support and guidance from multiple sources, and women in the mid-level positions are not getting that.
This isn’t necessarily the fault of anyone in particular. In many cases, managers genuinely don’t know how to advise them or give very different feedback compared with their male counterparts. Whilst they have the best intentions, they often have no first hand experience of the issues and challenges, and so their advice often misses the mark.
So, where do women go to get that support, guidance or advice on how to move forward?
The skills required to climb the corporate ladder are the same whether you are male or female. The obstacles we face though can be very different, as can the approach on how to overcome them.
Essentially, we need to reframe the issues otherwise we’re not going to get anywhere. The pipeline will remain as it is.
And I know this from experience. Let me tell you how it all started…
My journey to Elevate Talent
Before founding Elevate Talent, I worked in investment banking for many years. I was the only female on my desk, one of very few women let alone senior women on the trading floor, and the only female on the Executive Committee.
I had moved up the corporate ladder in a very assertive industry that wasn’t known for its female representation (and still isn’t) , so I know first hand the challenges women face.
After leaving the banking world (I took time off to build my house), I found my way into coaching.
I realised having been there, I could help people through that personal experience. I started off coaching senior women, and after five or six years, I started hearing the same challenges get mentioned time and time again.
This made me realise that the real need wasn’t in coaching the few who had made it to senior level, it was in helping the many who were not yet there.
I wanted to find a way of packaging everything I had learned in order to reach women further down the leadership curve and get them the support they were hungry for.
And so, Elevate Talent was born.
I’m delighted to say that we have come a long way since 2016. We now operate in 54 countries worldwide and have had over 5,000 women through the programme!
We have real-world experience
Everything that we do at Elevate Talent comes from real-life experience, which is fundamental to our success. All of the trainers and co-presenters on our webinars have corporate experience. They share real-life stories and real-world experiences to our audiences, which is a really powerful thing.
So, this blog is going to be an extension of that experience. We want to provide information on a problem that everyone knows is there, but where the focus remains mainly at the top.
Back in early the 2010s, people were calling this lack of female representation “the leaky pipeline”; then in 2015, it was “the missing middle”; and a couple of years ago, McKinsey labelled it “the broken rung”.
That is three different names over a decade. This shows us that whilst the problem is known about, there still isn’t enough of a spotlight on it.
Women are still leaving the workplace because of a lack of opportunity to use their skills and progress. More worryingly though are those who stay in static, unfulfilling careers. The amount of times I’ve heard women say they can do their job in their sleep is alarming!
This “stay and sleep” approach, working at maybe only 50–60% of what they are capable of, comes at a significant loss to the organisation.
Engage, empower, elevate
At Elevate Talent, we aim to help mid-level women using the three E’s:
If you are in a mid-level position, this blog series will help you by offering some tips and strategies that make it easier (and fun!) to ascend the corporate ladder. The series will also encourage you to take action and forge the career you want.
And if you are a leader, you’ll find a whole bunch of tips to inspire and empower the women in your team!
On top of this, you can also expect these blogs to be a weekly source of information on where to find great content. We’ll be providing you with reviews of some of the best books out there, interviewing experts and sharing the inspiring accomplishments of women both today and throughout history.
There are so many inspiring women out there who aren’t in the headlines, so, in giving them a voice, it is my hope that you will find yours too!
For more information on how to build a strong pipeline of leadership ready female talent, please get in touch by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Alternatively, for the latest updates on Elevate Talent and the work we are doing, please follow us on Linkedin.