Women of Influence

Navigating the corporate world these days demands a mastery of influence previously unseen. Business leaders find themselves handling a diversity of expectations and demands from various stakeholders like customers, shareholders, and employees.

Today, it is influence, not rank, that determines survival and success in the corporate landscape.

Understanding the why and how of influence in the 21st century is certainly important, but they are perhaps not as interesting as who. The answer might surprise you: women.

A study by Catalyst found that Fortune 500 companies with a higher representation of women on the board consistently outperformed companies with a lower representation of female board members (The Bottom Line, 2007). The Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) revealed that organizations with a good mix of men and women on the board achieved sales revenue averaging more than 10 times higher than organizations without women in leadership (Reflections from Asia Pacific Leaders, 2010).

These studies are part of a growing body of evidence proving that influential women are rapidly changing the dynamics of higher-echelon leadership while dramatically impacting the bottom line.

In delving further to understand these women spearheading change, we spoke to nine successful women who have earned the respect and recognition of their peers in their respective industries. Together with their stories of influential leadership, we took care to understand their influencing style, which were qualities that helped them to grow a following.

As a result we distilled nine influence styles. Applicable to both men and women, these influence styles are to effect change in their organizations and the world around them. Before we look at their stories, let’s explore these influence styles that are redefining leadership.

Gain insights on how you can become more influential in 9 different ways in this cover story, published in Point Magazine. Here, Karen reveals 9 women leaders in Asia who embody 9 influencing styles that are changing the face of leadership today.

Among these enlightening women are:
    - Tan Lee Chew (Vice President of Hewlett Packard),
    - Dr Jannie Chan Siew Lee (Executive Director of The Hour Glass Limited),
    - Randy Lai (Managing Director of Mcdonald's Singapore),
    - Ang Fung Fung (Partner at KPMG) and
    - Aliza Knox (Managing Director of Online Sales, Google Asia).

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