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How working moms can rise to the c-suite 1 Jun,15

Women need to stop holding back on their own career advancement.

MPW Insider is an online community where the biggest names in business and beyond answer timely career and leadership questions. Today’s answer for: If you’re a working mom — have you experienced workplace bias? If so, how do you respond? is written by Lisa Lambert, vice president of Intel Capital.

One of the biggest biases that working mothers face is the belief that rising to the executive ranks means doing morewhen, in actuality, it means doing things differently. According to recent research from Catalyst, women hold only 25% of senior-level positions at S&P 500 companies and the situation is significantly worse at the CEO and board levels. Women are certainly qualified and capable to lead, so why aren’t we given the opportunity? Bias against women does exist in the workplace, but I suspect that we also sometimes press pause on our own career advancement. There’s the notion that executive roles are too demanding and its impossible for those in these positions to have a family – it’s not.

The competing demands of career and family can feel overwhelming at times. I’m a working mother and have felt this feeling many times myself. I understand why the prospect of more responsibility may sometimes cause us to shudder. But, having worked closely with many corporate executives (both moms and dads), I can tell you it’s an imminently achievable lifestyle. Hear me out.

Executives have administrative assistants and technical assistants who keep their schedules balanced and orchestrate their activities so that they have plenty of time for personal commitments. They have more control over their “to do” lists and they have teams they can depend on to help them. Executives also have the financial means to delegate mundane tasks such as grocery shopping and house cleaning. That’s time freed up to spend with their families. I’m sure there are workaholic exceptions, but the 24/7 executive workweek is a myth.

We start our careers believing the way to get ahead is to take on more and personally deliver. And initially, this works. It’s how we establish our reputations, gain valuable experience, and expand our skills. But, leading requires a different approach. Leaders must hire the right people, empower them, chart and communicate a strategic path, and hold their employees accountable for results. For example, as I moved from being an individual contributor to a team leader at Intel Capital, I had to assume the role of coach rather than deal maker. I had to learn how to teach and motivate my team so that they could become competent in their trade.

A 2012 study by the Credit Suisse Research Institute showsthat greater gender diversity in the corporate ranks contributes to better corporate performance. That said, gender diversity at executive levels won’t be fully solved unless working moms aspire to these positions and are given the opportunity to achieve their dreams. Let’s face it. Most of us need to work. Many of us enjoy working. And so many women (moms included) are terrific at what they do and would make amazing leaders. My advice to working moms is to ignore the 24/7 executive lifestyle myth. Figure out how to change the way you work and then go for the c-suite. Corporate executives actually have more control over their time and more support both on the job and at home. Isn’t that the kind of “more” that working moms need?

About Intel India

Intel is a worldwide leader in computing innovation. It has over 25 years of presence in India with sustained commitment. With >6,000 employees in India, the best and the brightest collaborate with purpose.

Being a critical engineering center , Intel India has developed rich competencies in CPU, System-on-a chip, platform, software and graphics. It has been be enabling leadership products for Intel including Skylake, Intel® Edison, Anniedale and Broadwell-DE. In a country with 1.2 billion people, Intel India is blessed
with big opportunity to serve the computing needs of this growing market and with more and more. Made in India products and programs, Intel India will continue to showcase it’s computing prowess and leadership to the world.

Strong Innovation Focus

Innovation is in our DNA and today we're pushing it further and faster than ever before. Our software engineers are innovating throughout the entire software eco-system – from firmware to driver to middleware and application, with a goal of catalyzing a truly digital world and delivering amazing
computing experiences across a host of smart and connected devices . Over 24,000 patents Intel-wide says we know how to break a boundary or two.

Work with the Smartest People

At Intel, we strive to ignite imaginations and enable positive change, making people’s lives better and more interesting. Our teams are full of bold, brilliant innovators with a hunger to compete, and the tenacity to come out ahead. Here, what we share is a passion for the future. And the smarts to make
it better. Want proof? Our aspiring homegrown leaders will tell you all!

Create Your Own Career

The career opportunities within Intel are exploding . With the exciting opportunities to change roles, follow a managerial or technical path, extended education, trainings , as well as mentorship programs that provide a structured process and platform for our employees to connect, grow, and create lasting relationships by sharing knowledge and experiences , you have the power to shape your ideal career in Intel’s international working environment.

Intel is a Great Place to Work

Intel is committed to helping you be successful on and off the job by providing great benefits like health for life program, sports facilities, hobby clubs, fitness centers & flexi-time along with a competitive salary. Our Work/Life Effectiveness programs provide you a variety of tools and work environment solutions to reduce barriers to your effectiveness caused by work and personal life challenges.

Investment in education, caring for the environment, creating a better life for everyone. It's all part of the job. See a need in the community, and we’ll encourage you. Your desire to do good is all goodwith us!

INTEL INDIA RANKED # 2 in ‘India’s Best Companies to Work For’ Survey for 2014 – in Top 3 - 6 years in a row

Plug into a rewarding career at www.intel.com/jobs

M mentor
Debjani Ghosh
Information & Communications Technology
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