Originally published: March 23, 2017
The number of women progressing to the highest level of companies’ leadership narrows at each step of their career. A 2014 study from Bain & Company found that 43 percent of new female employees aim for top leadership roles at the start of their careers but within five years, only 16 percent aspire to that level.
In the following Q&A, Executive Director of Bentley’s Center for Women and Business Deb Pine explains how a woman’s view of leadership starts as early as 6 years old and dramatically changes the way she thinks about a career:
Q: How early are women’s views of leadership formed?
Pine: A woman’s view of leadership begins to take shape early in childhood, starting with the values she learns, her exposure to leadership skills and her positive role models. A new study found that 6-year-old girls are less likely than boys to think members of their own gender can be brilliant, a change from age 5, when they’re just as likely as boys to think their own gender can be brilliant.