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I recently had Dr. Patti Fletcher as a guest on my podcast, Let’s Fix Work, to talk about disrupting the status quo, unconscious bias and gender equity. It was an inspiring and eye-opening conversation. I wanted to share some of our thoughts about women in the workplace and disrupting the status quo.

When we talk about being disrupters, many feel the word is negative. Disrupters are troublemakers. They stand in the way of progress. But this is not so. Here’s why:

  1. Even with “Lean In” and #MeToo, the current system within the workplace benefits men. Work should be a system that encourages gender equity. 
  2. But that system has been in place since the dawn of time. It’s how we are all conditioned. 
  3. If we are high-performing leaders, we must  disrupt a system that’s holding women back. And it turns out the system is holding men back, too.

Patti defined the word disrupter so perfectly and I wanted to share it with you:

“The way I translate the word disruptor is there is a status quo that’s no longer serving the world in which it lives and we have to disrupt it. In disrupting, you unpack it. Some things might still be working, let’s keep those. But let’s disrupt the ones that aren’t.”

When you look at disruption in this way, you can see it’s a tool for change. Change is not a bad thing, either. In the case of women in leadership and in the workplace, being a disrupter is necessary. If you want to lead, you must disrupt.

Patti went on to say, “Every female disruptor understands that disruption starts with the person in the mirror. This does not mean act more like a man. Instead ask yourself, what do you have to bring to the table in order to bring this disruption for it? What do you need to start doing? What do you need to stop doing? What do you need to continue doing or how are you making decisions?”

Disrupting the status quo is needed now more than ever. Start asking those disrupter questions and become a leader in your workplace, the one you are meant to be.

If you want to hear my entire conversation with Dr. Patti Fletcher,  head over here to listen.