BUSINESS ACUMEN: A Woman’s Golden Key to Corporate Success

Healthy, Wealthy, and Wise 1Don’t want to get stuck in middle management? Be the kind of highly successful and effective leader that businesses fight for, and one that gets you into a company’s management talent pipeline. How do you do that, by learning to develop business acumen as early in your career as possible.

What is Business Acumen?  

In short, Business Acumen is knowing how your business operates, how it makes money and how it will sustain growth now and into the future.

Women in the Fortune 500 labor force are:

  • 45 percent of the overall Fortune 500 labor force;
  • 37 percent of first or mid-level officials and managers in those companies;
  • 25 percent of executive and senior-level officials and managers;
  • Hold only 19 percent of board seats;
  • Are only 4.6 percent of CEOs.

Statistics taken from, “The Women’s Leadership Gap,” article by Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress, Judith Warner. August 4, 2015

From the statistics above, 82 percent of women are in middle-management positions. Middle management is a satisfying position to achieve, but what if a woman one wants to be a CEO?

Now academic research affirms those women’s leadership attributes such as inclusiveness, being risk averse, and teamwork centric contribute to their company’s bottom line by as much as 12%.   So why then are more women not in executive positions?

Well inaccurate as it is, many women aren’t generally seen as having big picture thinking, financial, or strategic skills.  Since most men don’t expect women to have these skills, they will coach them on other business skills, just not the ones that matter the most for effective strategic business decisions.

Now the 4.6 percent of female CEO’s have been hired by companies because they have business acumen. They know these women will be able to look at their financial statements and know the story the numbers tell them.  They will understand the big picture and be able to create strategic goals for the success of the business.

Note to Self, a future female CEO: I can start learning about business acumen at every level and position I attain, even when I begin my first job.

Let’s get more women in that management talent pipeline by educating them about Business Acumen.

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