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Vol. 35 (2015)

In Quest of Excellence, Not Power: Women's Paths to Positions of Influence and Leadership

  • Avigail Moor
June 16, 2017


Despite the tremendous advancement of women in Western society, they are still exceedingly underrepresented in positions of leadership and policymaking in the public sphere. This study aims to explore the ways women may overcome the traditional barriers on their path to key positions of influence by examining the factors that contributed to the success of women who have reached senior policymaking positions in their organizations. The study combines qualitative and quantitative methodologies, consisting of in-depth interviews with high-ranking women in different spheres of Israeli society, such as parliament members, directors in the public and private spheres, senior military commanders, and the like, along with self-report questionnaires. The findings identify diverse factors that contributed to the rise of these women to the top, including organizational properties, familial features and personal attributes. Practical recommendations for the advancement of women to influential leadership positions are suggested in accordance with the results.