at Work


Off mute with Elise Misse

The LEAD Network connects people who are passionate about driving change in the workplace to leverage the full talent pool. This blog series by Elise Misse focuses on diversity, equity, inclusion and resilience at work. Please feel free to reach out and contact her on elise.misse@gmail.com.

Pallavi Sehgal

Blog #35

Break the Chain of Inequity: Help Pallavi Find Meaningful Work and Build a More Equitable Future.

On International Women’s Day 2023, I had the pleasure of interviewing my good friend, Pallavi Sehgal, a resilient and determined woman who has overcome numerous barriers to entering college and the workforce due to being wheelchair-bound after a car accident at 14 years old.

LEAD Network SuperPowers

Blog #34

A Human Approach – Modern Leadership in a Changing World – Part 5

Flattening the Corporate Curve

In 2021, 31% of senior management roles across the globe were held by female employees. Sure, that’s not the 50% we’re all looking for, but it’s higher than any previous number. Although the needle is moving in the right direction, this data makes me think of a famous quote from George Canning, a former Prime Minister of Great Britain – “I can prove anything by statistics except the truth.”

Blog #33

A Human Approach – Modern Leadership in a Changing World – Part 4

Redefining the Concept of Failure

I need to issue a warning before we go any further – this blog will contain numerous uses of the F word. I’m referring, of course, to “fail” – four letters that some people consider the most offensive in the English language.

LEAD Network SuperPowers

Blog #32

A Human Approach – Modern Leadership in a Changing World – Part 3

The Spirit of Collaboration

The workplace is arguably the most impacted by this shift in operation, with debate raging about the most efficient way to work in the future. Are you with Elon Musk, considering home working a slippery slope to reduced productivity, or are you among the 79% of business leaders that plan to make remote employment a permanent arrangement?

Blog #31

A Human Approach – Modern Leadership in a Changing World – Part 2

Finding Balance

Nobody ever said running a business would be easy. If it is, there’s a good chance that you’re doing it wrong. The life of a COO is one of constant plate-spinning, keeping one eye on the present and another on the future. Arguably the most efficient way to achieve this is by devising systems, processes, and practices that ensure a company runs as smoothly as a Swiss watch – without sacrificing humanity.

LEAD Network SuperPowers

Blog #30

A Human Approach – Modern Leadership in a Changing World – Part 1

Making Sense of Numbers – Balancing Budgets in Business

Over the coming days, I will post five new blogs discussing different components of leadership in the corporate world. First, I would like to place the management of business budgets under the microscope, and offer a reminder that every financial decision a company makes could impact an employee.

Blog #29

TOP 3 REASONS to attend the LEAD Network Conference 13th-14th-October 2022

The worlds of business and entrepreneurship are evolving, with an increasing number of women taking on leadership roles. It is a welcome and long overdue evolution that we should all take steps to nurture. While women in business are starting to see tangible rewards for their efforts, the quest for equality is far from over; LEAD Network continues to inspire women across the globe to thrive – and registration is open for 2022’s annual conference.

LEAD Network SuperPowers

Blog #28

Neurodiversity in the Workplace

I recently had a deep and engaging conversation with my good friend and mentor, Kathryn Parsons, and I thought: I must share this with everyone. So, here goes!

Blog #27

The Importance of Fun in the Workplace

Of all the holidays celebrated across the globe, one of my recently discovered favourites fell on April 22 in the form of National Jelly Bean Day. I’m not a candy eater but I have always considered jelly beans a source of fun and happiness.

LEAD Network SuperPowers

Blog #26

Banishing Bias – The Importance of International Women’s Day

Andy Williams memorably declared Christmas the most wonderful time of the year back in 1963, but I find that most years peak much earlier. International Women’s Day falls on March 8th, and it’s always a highlight for me.

Blog #25

Kindness Brings Humanity to the Workplace

Kindness is often overlooked in the 21st Century. Just take a look at social media for confirmation of this. The world has rarely felt more tribal and divided.

LEAD Network SuperPowers

Blog #24

Burn Out or Fade Away? How About Neither

The end of another year is approaching, which leaves us all taking stock of recent events. While 2020 will stand apart for most of us as one of the most challenging years in recent memory, personally and professionally, 2021 has been no picnic either.

Blog #23

“When they go low, we go high” – How to deal with bad or toxic bosses

Have you ever wondered how successful people deal with bad or generally toxic bosses? Surely, you must have wondered it because we rub shoulders with them at some point in our careers, don’t we?

LEAD Network SuperPowers

Blog #22

How to Build Resilience

Ever wondered how resilience is built or why resilience is important? While there are many definitions you might come across, there is no single universally agreed upon definition as such.

Blog #21

Never Stop Learning – The Importance of Mentoring

I am currently responsible for Global Communications Media Measurement at my workplace, and the LEAD Network played a significant role in my successful interview for this role a few years ago. In particular, I owe a dent of thanks to my mentors from the LEAD Network. Having somebody in my corner to help me steer my ship was more beneficial than I can express.

LEAD Network SuperPowers

Blog #20

Returning to the Workplace Following Lockdown

Day by day, people across the world are returning to their conventional workplaces. Lockdowns are increasingly infrequent, retailers and businesses are re-opening, and companies are getting back on their feet.

Blog #19

10 reasons to attend the LEAD Network Virtual Conference 2021

We’re living in a brave new world following the events of the last 18 months, but some degree of normality is steadily returning. Many of us are making plans to return to the workplace in some capacity. Whether that’s staggering time between home and the office or finding a new solution, our relationship with work will likely shift once more.

LEAD Network SuperPowers

Blog #18

When Cassandra Speaks, We Should All Listen

World Book Day falls on April 23, providing an opportune moment to discuss a book that has impacted me recently – Elizabeth Lesser’s Cassandra Speaks: When Women are the Storytellers, the Human Story Changes.

Blog #17

The Importance of Allyship in the Workplace

Negotiating workplace relationships sometimes feels like a minefield. A workplace is oftentimes like an unconventional family unit, leading to diversity in opinions and behaviours. Whether by accident or design, where people gather, difficult dynamics can follow.

LEAD Network SuperPowers

Blog #16

International Women’s Day Can Set the Tone for a Better Future

As March approaches, so does International Women’s Day. This is always a trending topic on social media, which is great. Granted, many of those hashtags come from trolls demanding to know why there is no International Men’s Day (short answer, there is – November 19th), but for the most part, the conversation is all about celebrating women. Hurrah!

Blog #15

Work, Life and the Elusive Pursuit of Happiness

As we have waved goodbye to 2020, one of the most challenging years in recent memory for many of us, it’s only natural that we start to think about the future. While the world may not have returned to what we previously considered ‘normal’ – and maybe never will – we all have decisions to make.

LEAD Network SuperPowers

Blog #14

SuperPowersNow Initiative

The outbreak of COVID-19 has impacted every industry imaginable, including the entertainment business. Ordinarily, millions of people would seek temporary respite from reality by enjoying the exploits of larger-than-life superheroes on the cinema screen. Naturally, that has not been an option for some time.

Blog #13

Value for Men

The search for gender equality in the workplace is lengthy and tireless. Thankfully, an ever-increasing number of people are joining the cause. Passionate and dedicated campaigners are an irresistible force, continuing to butt against the immovable object of institutional sexism.

Gender Blindness

Blog #12

Gender Blindness – A Good Intention That Can Go Awry

The business world is constantly awash with buzzwords. The latest of these is gender-blindness – a promise to base workplace decisions purely around ability, without factoring gender into the equation.

Blog #11

The Wit and Wisdom of Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Like many – including, I’m sure, the majority of people reading this – I was deeply saddened to hear about the passing of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg last weekend. I have discussed previously how much of an influence and inspiration this astonishing woman was to me over the years.

Blog #10

Working Women and the Search for Joy

It’s no secret that a happy workplace leads to productive employees. It is believed that team members who enjoy their work achieve up to 13% more than those that find themselves worn down by the daily grind. In the challenging work climate that we are all currently facing, a sense of contentment is arguably more important than ever.

Blog #9

Earn a Slice of the PIE – Making a Great Impression

There’s an old saying that claims we only get one chance to make a first impression. In the 21st Century, this is even more important. An increase in the availability of further and higher education has opened doors to more opportunities for some. While this is admirable, it has also created more competition for a select handful of roles in the workplace.

Blog #8

Living in uncertain times – How to Motivate and Lead Teams during a Pandemic

We are living in an unprecedented period in human history. This means that it is becoming increasingly challenging to keep our ‘heads in the game’ when it comes to work.

Naturally, we all have a personal role to play in this. We need to, in the words of the British during World War II, “keep calm and carry on.”

All the same, as employers, managers and leaders, we can play a part in keeping our teams motivated. This is a time for encouragement, not finger-pointing and pointing out mistakes or missed deadlines. I would like to discuss how we can go about this.

Blog #7

The Eternal Battle Between the Hearts and Minds of Working Women

No matter what industry we work in, or how high we have climbed the corporate ladder, the performance review sparks dread in the hearts of many. There is something innately nerve-racking about sitting opposite our boss and, to all intents and purposes, justifying why our salary should continue to be removed from the company bottom line.

Blog #6

Working from Home is the Future, Not a Fad

Those of us that are working from home during the Coronavirus crisis are fortunate, in many respects. We have an opportunity denied to many. The staff members out there on the front line – stocking shelves, making deliveries and aiding the sick – would presumably love the opportunity to type some words at their home desks. Let’s not pretend that home working is the greatest challenge facing the world during this global pandemic. However, we need senior figures in our businesses to understand the challenges of working and parenting. This is an opportunity to do just that. In essence, we have the opportunity to remould the corporate landscape. My thoughts are with anybody impacted by Coronavirus, and I sincerely hope that anybody reading this rides out this storm, with their family and loved ones remaining safe.

Blog #5

International Women’s Day – An Occasion to Savour

International Women’s Day – a day to celebrate women and their achievements, in every field – and to encourage the next generation of women to achieve everything they are capable of. The sad fact is, despite awareness of gender inequality in the workplace arguably being at an all time high, we are further away than ever. The latest World Economic Forum Gender Gap Report for 2020 claims that we are 257 years away from closing the gap. Last year, it was 202 years. What are we going to do change this?

Blog #4

Graduation is an Industry Game-Changer at the School for Leaders

In 2019, I attended the LEAD Network Conference. You can read my report on this critical and eye-opening event here. While I was fascinated and impressed by all the speakers at the conference, one, in particular, piqued my curiosity and left me wanting to know more. I am referring to Rami Baitieh, the CEO of Carrefour Spain. I was inspired by Rami’s speech on Carrefour’s School for Leaders program, and he proved to be equally inspiring company when we caught up for a telephone conversation.

Blog #3

Welcoming Women – Making the Workplace Equally Enjoyable for All

It is no secret that many workplaces experience a gender disparity in terms of staff, especially in senior roles. Countless companies, including my own employer, are taking steps to rectify this. Effective allyship from male colleagues is key. This is not just an issue for women, and it’s not merely a female-centric issue. It’s a problem for business as a whole. Companies are missing out on a wealth of opportunity and ideas by not taking women seriously.

Blog #2

Growing a Career in the Face of Adversity, Finding Balance, and Success

Common sense is high on the agenda of Lee Woodruff, the guest speaker at my workplace recently. The conversation was entitled, “Growing a Career in the Face of Adversity, Finding Balance, and Success”. It was an eye-opening discussion with some interesting take-homes.

Blog #1

We need to stop differentiating between male and female leadership. The only thing that matters is good leadership

It’s no secret that there are many advantages to being part of the LEAD Network. For me, one of the major perks was the opportunity to attend the annual network event in Madrid in 2019. The personal and professional highlights were varied. It was a packed day, filled with exceptional and thought-provoking content. To this end, I am keen to capture some of the take-home messages that really struck a chord with me.