At the 2019 AWESOME Symposium, Ann Drake, AWESOME Founder and Chairman of the Advisory Board of DSC Logistics, called attention to new research by Brian Uzzi of the Kellogg School of Management of Northwestern University. This research, she said, identifies how being part of a trusted community of women can help an individual rise faster and higher.
According to an article in Forbes, the research studied business school graduates and found that “social networks strongly predicted placement into leadership positions, thus indicating effective networking plays an important role in career success.” Not only that, but the research authors found there are gender differences in networking.
The study suggests three ways women need to network differently in order to see the most return on the time invested in networking.
- Diversity and randomness are important because “your network is most valuable to the degree that it helps you overcome your personal limitations.”
- Strong female contacts in an “inner circle” are needed to provide the type of “private” information women need to navigate predominantly male environments.
- Women also need to be “central” in a network – have a lot of contacts – so they have access to “public information.” The research concludes that both men and women need to be central, but women’s success depends more than men’s does on having the inner circle as well.