We behave as though our organizations are meritocracies. But research tells us that women must perform 2.5 times better than men, to be rated as equals. Resumes with male names are rated more highly than the same resumes with female names. Only when musicians started auditioning behind screens were more women selected for orchestras.
Women have succeeded by exceeding expectations on the job. But they still lag in attaining leadership posts. To take the next leap forward, increase your visibility and amplify your voice:
Ask. Don't wait for your talents to be recognized. Identify the next opportunity - to chair a committee, lead a mission, or get a promotion. Speak to the decision-makers early on about what you have to do to be considered.
Change the viewpoint. Women are usually assessed by their past accomplishments while men are often viewed for their potential. That makes it more likely that men will be promoted. Recognize this reality. Structure your "ask" by demonstrating, in concrete terms, how your achievements add up to a track record of success in new assignments.
Leverage your expertise. Use your specialized knowledge to transmit wisdom to the field. If you're involved at your JCC, bring what you've learned to a federation commission on community-building. If you're a fundraiser with success in involving younger donors, write an article for a professional newsletter.
Raise your public profile. Leaders are visible in multiple settings. They sit on boards, make speeches, and network at cocktail hours. For many women, these public activities conflict with their idea of doing a perfect job. Men often reframe these public commitments as essential to their jobs. To enhance your career, re-calculate your use of professional time and expand your public presence.