Women in Academic Leadership (Part 2) I Financial literacy and the ability to withstand uncertainty are two essential skills for successful academic leadership

Professor Nandita Abraham, Director of Global Services Partnerships at Global University Systems (GUS), said financial and business acumen, acceptance of uncertainty and willingness to collaborate are some of the key skills that women university leadership positions must acquire to become the least spoken. – approximate but demanding role. In an interview with Moneycontrol, she noted that despite the huge higher education industry in India, the percentage of women in leadership positions in academia is low and women can change this to a large extent by taking risks and becoming entrepreneurs.

Women leaders should have financial and business savvy. It’s not that all men have it, but they’re comfortable talking about it. Female leadership, I think we have to work on that. Second, be comfortable with the uncertainties and complexities of a professional space. And understand that flexibility is important. The third point is that female leadership in academia should be entrepreneurial in nature – identify what you can do for the organization, what new things can be done, etc. Fourth, get comfortable with collaborations – partner with the best. And the fifth trait is integrity, humility and authenticity. It is for men and women. Authenticity is hugely important when you’re a leader – empathize and understand your team, co-workers, colleagues. Then they will believe in your vision. At a university, you invariably see people come in and put in a certain number of hours and leave. But how to make them work for a vision, a goal is crucial.

Abraham, who has worked in India and abroad, in education and industry, also spoke of social construction as an obstacle and the need to move away from comfort zones to become a academic leader. The choice some pursue is to have a 10am to 5pm profession – thus becoming a teacher. It’s our social construct – society expects you to become a teacher and come home at night to take care of the family. Perhaps a significant portion of women are also not looking at the right moves, building a portfolio that will help them move up the ladder. So this is largely about the women themselves. Most of the time, you would see a woman working for the success of others and not for her own success. It is important to break the limit, what else can be done to change the organization, how can you build an organization with your ideas, etc. are equally important.

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  • Women in Academic Leadership (Part 2) I Financial literacy and the ability to withstand uncertainty are two essential skills for successful academic leadership
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Sarah J. Greer