As seen at BizCatalyst360 – I believe the generational shift of the next five years – caused by the Boomer Brain Drain – will be a historic opportunity for women to rise to leadership. There simply are not enough men in Gen X to fill the vacuum left by retiring boomers. With every passing day, there will be fewer people in the workforce with the knowledge and experience to lead effectively. And for every two people who retire, there is just one Gen Xer to take their place. I ‘m so excited about what this means for women between now and 2021?
- FACT: There are 74.6 million Baby Boomers in the U.S. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 53 percent of them are women.
- FACT: In the Fortune 1000 companies, there are just 51 women CEO’s, about 5 percent.
- FACT: According to Catalyst, the average board of a Fortune 500 company in the United States is just 19.2 percent female.
- FACT: overall women still earn only 79 percent of what men earn.
- FACT: There are only about 46 million Gen Xers in the U.S., 52 percent are women.
- FACT: There are 86 million Millenials in the U.S., 50 percent are women.
- FACT: If you’re prepared, you’ll be ready to step up.
Most companies will need to tap the young leaders they have to deal with the Boomer exodus. If they don’t, the leadership gap could cause a greater economic downturn than the last recession. People with little or no leadership experience will be catapulted to positions they’re not ready to fill. Poaching will be one strategy used to fill the gap and cause more chaos.
Great News for Women
There won’t be enough qualified men to fill those positions. This is great news for women. Don’t miss out. Prepare yourself now to step up to those soon-to-be vacant leadership positions.
- Think about the knowledge that will be lost when Boomers retire and how you can learn it now.
- Stay current with new technology and best practices.
- Take advantage of knowledge transfer opportunities in your organization and professional associations.
- Get a mentor and be a mentor. Mentors advance more quickly and can earn up to $25,000 a year more than their colleagues who don’t. And Mentees learn the ropes more quickly than experience alone can teach them.
- Hire an Executive Coach to help you prepare.
- Earn that degree you have been putting off.
- Volunteer on a non-profit board of directors so you can learn and practice collaborative decision-making. Choose a board where you will be able to work alongside high-level executives from other companies. This will increase your confidence and expand your network.
These next few years really will be the best time ever for women to rise and take their place among the leaders of U.S. corporations and non-profits.
Susan Bender Phelps is a corporate trainer and consultant for mentorship, leadership & communication – the essential skills you need to succeed. The author of the best-selling book,” Aspire Higher,” a collection of true career and business mentoring success stories, Susan is in high demand as a speaker. She inspires audiences to create breakthrough results in their lives and work.