What Keeps High Achieving Women from Choosing Executive Positions: IV. The Shifting Female Mindset

What Keeps High Achieving Women from Choosing Executive Positions: IV. The Shifting Female Mindset

Women who read and discuss the findings will find new ways to manage their careers and their lives. They might also find ways to adjust their styles to better serve their career goals in the corporations they work for. The organizations will benefit by learning how to better support, develop and retain top talent in their senior ranks. Coaches and mentors who work with these women will have a useful guide to help them with their work.


Because this study deals with mostly understudied phenomena at the time of this research, the following list is more a set of assumptions guiding the research than a list of  hypotheses to be tested. The results will be used to see if all or parts of the assumptions are valid. These results can then be used to develop clearer hypothesis and a grounded theory.

The assumptions include:

High-achieving women in today’s workplace may still exhibit imposter and bully behavior. However, their confidence is more solid than previous generations. This has led to new presentation strategies, including roles such as the Warrior, Queen, Revolutionary, Pioneer, Rebel, Seeker, and Visionary. These roles have emerged as they demand to be significant players in the workforce and seek to be recognized for their gifts instead of needing validation for their courage.

The definitions of success given by high-achieving women today are varied and complex. They are not single-focused up the ladder of success. They include other life factors and “whole-life” visions. Also, their sense of success is based more on feelings of accomplishment and fulfillment than on the number of degrees acquired, positions held and possessions accumulated.

High-achieving women still feel the pinch of discrimination in the workplace. However, many of them feel it is just something that exists but doesn’t affect them. They do not worry about proving that a woman can do a job. They focus on proving that they are the best person for the job. Discrimination does not have the cultural relevance it once had. These women feel they have to find their way on their own regardless of what a man or woman puts in their way.


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About the Author

Marcia Reynolds

Marcia ReynoldsIn addition to coaching leaders in global companies, Dr. Marcia Reynolds travels the world speaking and teaching classes in advanced coaching skills, leadership and emotional intelligence. She is the author of 3 books and has been quoted in major online and print publications in the US and Europe.

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