Some women’s careers have taken a hit as a result of the pandemic, but one female CEO sees it as a chance for women to climb the corporate ladder. Diane Bryant, the chairman and CEO of NovaSignal and former exec at Intel and Google, believes the move to remote work has created unique opportunities for women to get ahead in their careers.
“For decades we’ve debated – as women – how to get a seat at the table, but now, there is no table,” explains Bryant. “Covid-19, in some regards, has leveled the playing field as the move to online communication channels lowers barriers to inclusion.”
She encourages women to use this time in their careers to “leverage those very channels” and connect with higher-ups that can support you and “help revitalize” your career. Since everyone is working online these days, Bryant says now’s the time to reach out to leaders to find out how to better position yourself for success. To make the most of those conversations, she recommends the “PEAP” method:
- Preparation - Treat the talk like an interview and focus on how you can add to your impact to the company.
- Efficiency - Request to meet by Zoom and keep the meeting short, around 15 minutes, because the boss is likely to agree to just 15 minutes.
- Advice - “Every leader wants to feel their opinion is valued,” Bryant explains. So listen and learn from what they have to say, especially by following through on their advice.
- Positivity - Think of the meeting as an opportunity, not a chance to complain about your position or pay. Stay positive and assume whatever you say will be shared with your manager.