It’s National Women’s History Month, and in celebration of all the fantastic female leaders past, present and future, the Glassdoor team is featuring some best businesswomen today. Today we turn the spotlight to Lizanne Kindler, CEO of Talbots and one of the most well regarded CEOs on Glassdoor.
Kindler has been leading the company since 2012 and has earned an 87 percent CEO approval rating on Glassdoor. Just check out the company reviews and you’ll see endless mentions of the “great work/life balance” and “supportive work environment” Kindler has cultivated during her time at the helm of the retail chain.
Here are her thoughts and advice on some hot leadership topics in the professional world:
Great leadership is built on trust
One of the most important aspects of business leadership, and arguably the most difficult, is getting your employees to get behind you as a leader. If your workforce doesn’t believe in you or your abilities, leading them is going to be a constant battle. But in Kindler’s opinion, there’s a simple secret:
It’s easy…trust your people. It really is that simple. As the CEO, you have to set clear objectives, goals, and expectations. But knowing that you are trusted to do your job and do it well is the most incredible motivator of all.
Ending gender pay inequality
When it comes to eliminating salary inequality between men and women, Kindler reminds professionals of both sexes that they have the power to improve things:
The gender/pay topic is a hot button right now, and rather than speak to politics, I’ll speak to what I believe. Do the research up front and make sure that you are signing up to be a part of a culture that believes in paying for experience and performance. If there are differences in pay that are based on factors such as gender, you may want to ask yourself, ‘Why would I want to work here?’ If the culture is right, then fight for what you’re worth. It is my hope that everyone will find a work culture that will support them, challenge them and ultimately reward them appropriately for a job well done.
Creating the next wave of female leaders
Great business leaders aren’t born, they’re made. According to Kindler, if we want to create more female executives, we need to focus on mentoring them:
I am where I am today because I have been surrounded by strong, influential women my entire life and career. These women were not, and are not, afraid to surround themselves with other women or people who may be smarter than they are because they know it makes them better leaders. I believe very strongly in this.
Whether it’s dealing with the problems we face today or preparing for those of the future, it takes a strong leader to keep their team motivated, happy, and effective. For Lizanne Kindler that means being a trusting, fair, and supportive female leader.
What are some other pieces of advice for female leaders? Share in the comments below!