Why Women Leave Leadership and What to Do About It
This past year, I’ve had an increasing number of sessions with talented, accomplished women who have expressed some version of being fed up with feeling undervalued, underutilized, and overworked in all the wrong ways at their organization.
- Accomplished women express some version of being fed up with feeling undervalued, underutilized, and overworked in the workplace.
- If and when they transition into a leadership role, women often receive insufficient leadership development and experience gender disparities.
- Workplaces must train current leaders to be better mentors and coaches to emerging leaders.
Feeling overworked is probably the most often cited among these.
While data is still being analyzed about the “Great Resignation” (Great Reshuffling?), current research suggests that women:
- May be resigning at faster rates than men,
- Are more likely to contemplate leaving,
- Experience higher rates of burnout;
- Are less likely to receive a pay raise or bonus for taking on additional work or changing roles,
- Are more likely to agree to taking on unpaid informal leadership roles shouldering heavy responsibilities, such as employee wellness or DEI programs (which adds to the increased burnout and lack of recognition noted above), and
- Are less likely to feel empowered to take advantage of flexible working arrangements.
These data points and current research align with my anecdotal experience of hearing women’s increasing concerns about feeling overworked and under-supported for that extra work.