Do you do backflips when you hear the word “leadership”?
Does your inner critic tell you you’re just not cut out for it? That you simply don’t have the experience needed and aren’t in any position to tell others what to do?
But what if being a great leader isn’t about having all the answers or always being in control? What if it’s about listening and collaborating? Working through networks instead of hierarchies?
The city of London, England is famous for its “Mind the Gap” warning which echoes through the public transit system. It cautions riders about the space between the train and the subway platform.
But the warning is also relevant to women around the world as they navigate their careers – there's a gap that's harder to see, impossible to step over, and considerably less charming.
The gender wage gap is the difference in income that women earn when compared to men. Some attribute the wage gap to the fact that women tend to be concentrated in undervalued, low-paying jobs, and make up the majority of part-time workers.
Canada turns another year older tomorrow. We’ll celebrate by dressing up in red and white and gasping at fireworks as they explode in the sky. Canada Day is an exciting reminder of how far this country has progressed in the last 149 years. Yet despite the significant steps forward, women still haven’t reached true gender equality. In 2015, Canada was ranked 30th on the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Index.
Today, women can legally vote, go to school, become doctors and lawyers, and run for political office. Women can, in theory, do whatever and be whoever they want. But in government and business leadership roles, there remains a significant gap between Canadian men and women.
Every parent has those moments when we’re suddenly reminded how quickly our child is growing up: the first step, the first tooth, the first time they walk to school without us. For many parents, one of the most challenging milestones is realizing our child is interested in “romance” and dating. The best way to prepare them—and protect them—is to teach them how to build strong, healthy relationships.
Our children learn about relationships every day, simply by observing the world around them. As Director of Violence Prevention at the Canadian Women’s Foundation, I can tell you that most of what they see is not good. Throughout their lifetime, the average child in Canada will witness thousands of examples of unhealthy relationships— at school, on social media, in celebrity gossip magazines, music videos, movies, and TV. If we don’t teach our children about relationships someone else will, and we won’t like the results!