What helps a woman succeed in work?

Recently I had a privilege to listen some fascinating stories of women who had highly succeeded in what they did. These women were of different ages and different nationalities, and what they did as their work was totally different from each other. Despite these differences, their stories had some striking similarities. What hit me was especially following:

Putting your heart in what you do. As one of these wonderful women put it, “Women must love their business.” All these women talked about their own work with passion. They did not just use their brains in what they did, but their heart as well.

Being open minded. All these women had reached high in what they did. They were open minded and had done something new and innovative in their work. They had not been afraid of taking risks and fail. They had a ‘can do’ attitude.

Having the support of people close to you. All these women praised how they had been supported by someone close to them. Support from the parents when being a child had been very important for many. The support of the spouse seems to be crucial in order to combine work life and family life. The support of these important people close to you had helped these women to believe in themselves, to dare to try something new and to go beyond their comfort zones.

Having balance. These women showed that being successful in your work does not mean that you can’t have a balanced life with a family and children. These women valued family life highly and it was the core of their wellbeing.

Who were these women? These were the women who talked about their careers and lives in the first Sisters in Charge Summit in Espoo, August 2014. See more sisint.org.