Advice From Female Leaders on International Women’s Day

Advice From Female Leaders on International Women's Day

Here at Glassdoor, we’re celebrating International Women’s Day by thanking our female leaders and asking them to share advice on how all organizations can better serve and encourage their female employees.

We’re lucky enough to have six female executives on our team, including a Chief Product Officer, VP of Sales, VP of People, VP of Client Success, VP of Corporate Affairs and VP of Employer Marketing. These six women alone have 115+ years combined experience and run integral departments and teams, touching every single part of Glassdoor.

Considering women make up almost 52 percent of all professional-level jobs yet only 14.6 percent of executive officer positions, we’re proud to boast an executive board made up of six women, totaling 33% of the executive leadership positions at Glassdoor (Center for American Progress, 2014).

To celebrate International Women’s Day, we asked our female leaders how they inspire their teams to succeed, the best piece of advice they’ve ever received and how mentoring has helped them throughout their careers, including how they mentor female leaders on their own teams today.

Here’s what our women leaders had to say:

International Women’s Day - Advice from the Women of the Glassdoor Exec Team

Bring your whole self to the office

“Bring your all, and make sure the time you spend in your job, at your company, in your role, is worth it. Don’t be mediocre, be awesome. Be authentic, be yourself. Help and inspire others around you to do the same. Life is short, do your best.” -- Heather Friedland, Glassdoor’s Chief Product Officer

Believe in yourself

“The best advice I ever received was from my mom. She encouraged me and constantly told me I could do anything I set my mind to. She also told me to use the power of my mind to make things happen -- you can do anything if you just want it badly enough.” -- Kirsten Smith, VP of Employer Marketing

When it comes to money, ask for what you deserve -- and do your homework

“As a woman who has been working more than 20 years in corporate and consulting roles, I’ve had my share of negotiations around compensation. These have been guided by advice I received very early in my career – from a male mentor, who told me to never be afraid to ask for what I felt I deserved and never wait for someone else to make it happen. He warned compensation is one area where patience doesn’t typically pay off.” -- Dawn Lyon, Glassdoor’s VP of Corporate Affairs

“Come to the table expecting to negotiate. Don’t just ask for more, but do so intelligently, with real numbers to support your argument. Use your research to put together a case for more base salary or a signing bonus because if you don't ask, you most definitely won't get it. And, as I know from being an employee and a hiring manager, it is always easier negotiate as you are going into a new job.” -- Dawn Lyon, Glassdoor’s VP of Corporate Affairs

Take risks and challenge yourself

Take risks. When faced with two choices about a career decision, choose the harder one, the uncomfortable one - challenge yourself to take risks even if you may feel uncomfortable, because that's when you know that you are learning and growing.” -- Heather Friedland, Glassdoor’s Chief Product Officer

Confidence and assertion are key

“I encourage all of my female employees to exude confidence in everything that they do, assert themselves and always be transparent and upfront when managing relationships. However, a key part of this is also knowing when to just sit back and listen.” -- Kirsten Smith, VP of Employer Marketing

Do your best work -- regardless of your gender

“Do your best work. Make your work matter, have impact. This shouldn’t be any different between women and men.” -- Heather Friedland, Glassdoor’s Chief Product Officer

International Women’s Day - 3 Tips for employers

Our female leaders have spoken! Here are a few tips we encourage you to implement at your organization based on our female leader’s feedback:

1. Encourage all employees to be their true selves. Seventy percent of women with children under the age of 18 participate in the labor force, according to the United States Department of Labor. What are you doing to encourage working moms in the workplace?

Whether it’s offering flexible working hours so parents can pick their kids up from school or attend parent/teacher conferences, or upping your maternity leave game, it’s time to rethink how you’re attracting, encouraging (and retaining) female employees.

2. Encourage employees to take risks, learn and grow. Did you know the #1 and #2 things that affect overall employee satisfaction far before compensation and benefits are culture & values and career opportunities, according to Glassdoor Economic Research? Employees want to grow within your organization, and giving your female employees room to grow internally will keep them happy and around long-term.

3. Encourage salary transparency. According to new Glassdoor Economic Research, openly sharing salary information can be a winning strategy for both companies and their workers. Employers with transparent workplaces include a plethora of benefits, including higher productivity and better job matching for open positions, and employees enjoy an enhanced sense of fairness in pay determination.

Additionally, another interesting portion of the research shows how salary transparency helps expose pay gaps between otherwise similar workers, including men and women. Men are more likely to negotiate salary than women, but studies show this “negotiation gap” disappears when information about other job applicants’ negotiation experience is public information.

Happy International Women’s Day!