Setting their social status and wealth aside (as it has nothing to do with the bigger picture), I personally support both their missions and efforts to shed some light on the humongous pink elephant in the room. These two women are forcing us to have conversations that have been well overdue about women in the workforce.
I often feel that as women, we sell ourselves short of what we are truly capable of accomplishing. We are often our own worst enemies, perpetuating on myths created in an attempt to make us all fit into a mold that has never existed. Being made to believe that as women, we must have it all or have nothing at all. This false notion often leads to many of us not following our dreams simply to appease others, never giving ourselves the opportunity to do what’s right for us.
The overwhelming media presence and scrutiny these two women have received lately have opened up conversations about women in the workplace that many still aren’t comfortable having. And what is sad is that most of these harsh criticisms are being made mostly by other women. Denying their achievements and complaining about their leadership styles is clearly missing the point of what these women and others like them have been accomplishing for years. People refer to women as aggressive or abrasive in how they go about career decisions, when the reality is that no man with their record would in a million years face such personal attacks.
When will we come to accept the fact that C-level executives who happen to be women do not need to represent a certain type of woman? They do not have to choose between their family and career, and they most definitely do not have to answer to anyone when making decisions that will affect the potential success of a company.
Controversies regarding women and work, and ambition and success, should not be in our agenda. Instead, we should applaud those that are, in fact, obliterating the glass ceiling by continuing to debunk the myths that have been created to pin us against each other and make us behave like crabs in a barrel. Let them be an inspiration to other women — and to men, too.
Here are just a few things I have taken from these two powerful examples of women who do not define themselves by labels or misconceptions.