The end is in sight: The academic year is slowly coming to a close, and with a line-up of Fieldlab events and vaccination rounds, we can see the end of the tunnel a lot more clearly. It inspires confidence and excitement for what’s to come: More live events, more networking between Librae members and partnered organizations, and more live mentorship events to create a community of driven women in STEM.
In April, we hosted Beyond Finance Week in collaboration with Torqx, Optiver and ING. It was a week of engaging panels, intriguing cases and inspiring guest speakers sharing their experiences. We were very grateful for the everyone’s participation and enthusiasm, and we are already working on plans for hosting more themed weeks of events for the next academic year!
In June, there will be a workshop with PwC where you are coached to speak and present persuasively through Pyramid Thinking. If you want to learn how to nail those final presentations for any of your projects, stay tuned and sign up!
Result-driven, Resilient and Bold: Female Leaders take the Cake
At Librae we are strong advocates for more inclusive organizations, which often starts with more diverse leadership. from Harvard Business Review shows that beyond the basic equality principle, there is an equally pressing reason to call for more female leadership: According to their male(!) managers, women are more effective at 84% of the competencies frequently measured to assess quality of leadership. This finding was applicable to all hierarchical levels, as well as male-dominated sectors.
Interestingly, women rated themselves far lower on the effectiveness of their leadership, which implies that their lower confidence might be the reason they do not step up as quickly as similarly-qualified men when there is an opportunity to get promoted. As female professionals grow older, their ratings of their own effectiveness rise. Still, organizations should work on being more encouraging towards their female employees and consider them seriously when new opportunities arise. In the meantime, we hope that more young women can find female mentors who can support those who do not fully trust in their capabilities yet. In the end, we hope everyone in the network starts to believe in what research has already shown: Women score higher on taking initiative, being resilient, communicating powerfully and displaying honesty and integrity, and therefore they make for excellent leaders.
Scout Mindset: The Traits that Predict Good Judgment
The leadership trait of honesty and integrity is not just an indicator of a morally inclined person: They also help with yet another desirable trait for decision makers: good judgment. In her , Julia Galef describes how we are often very motivated to find arguments for the point of view we want to be true, while dismissing counter-evidence. This all happens subconsciously, driven by emotions like defensivenss or tribalism. But emotions are not the enemy here: The alternative, scout mindset, thrives on curiosity, testing your own beliefs and not seeing changing your mind as a weakness. “Scouts” are intrigued when they encounter something that contradicts their beliefs, and they aim to find the most full picture of the truth, even if it is a painful, inconvenient one. A scout is secure and grounded, as they do not tie their self-esteem to being right. Through this mindset, people can truly confront an issue, as there is no need to avoid or conceal aspects of a situation that might challenge their beliefs.
Still, continuous questioning can lead to very inconvenient truths: Although the world is welcoming relief from the COVID crisis through vaccinations, there are many crucial sidenotes to be made. This article lays out how women were forgotten in COVID-19 research, leading to them being disproportionately affected by side effects. To be fair, having too many subgroups makes vaccine trials even more complicated, which makes it more difficult to judge their safety and efficacy. In a time-sensitive situation like a global pandemic it may not be possible to include every social group. However, the limited knowledge of the female body is a structural pattern hinting at men still being used as the main representatives of human bodies, which is a gross oversight. In future medical research, it should not be seen as a luxury, but a standard, that different subgroups should be considered, as the adverse effects of treatments should be known before they are rolled out onto the market for everybody.
Naturally, this occurs sooner if there are more diverse leaders advocating for more inclusive decisions. Standing up to the status quo is not easy, but by learning to argue your points convincingly and engaging your audience can make all the difference. If you want to build this skill, we hope to see you at the Pyramid Thinking workshop with PwC!
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All the best ,
The Librae Team