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Dear Julia, we are looking forward to your exciting presentation at the WomenPower. But today we want to speak with you about the big topic "Female Leadership". We have a few questions and would love to hear your expertise.

What qualities and characteristics distinguish successful female leaders?

Julia: Basically, I believe that female as well as male leaders can be most successful when there is a mix of heterogeneous characteristics in a leadership team. Studies have shown that character traits of men and women aren’t fundamentally different, but they are used differently. We also see this in practice. Women are often credited with a certain level-headedness and a high degree of solution orientation. They also tend to maintain a stronger emotional bond, both with customers and employees. Furthermore, I believe that a certain ability to work in a team, caring, creativity and the achievement of common goals are in the forefront. Finally, in my opinion, female leaders are most successful when they live an authentic leadership style without adapting the organization's established leadership styles.

From your point of view, how can organizations ensure that they recruit and promote female managers effectively?

Julia: For me, the most important point in recruiting female executives is updating the selection criteria. In the past, the aspect of seniority was usually weighted very heavily, which naturally meant that some women had a worse chance than their male colleagues due to part-time work, parental leave or breaks for childcare. At the same time, it has become clear that seniority is an important aspect, but not the most important one in terms of weighting. Therefore, I believe that selection criteria for new managers need to be expanded to include performance and potential, to better consider female leaders in recruitment.

Another aspect comes along: all this cannot only be the goal of women or women's networks. It must be a common goal of all genders in companies, and that's why I also believe that networks, for example, should not be exclusive, but that it also must be advanced together with men and diverse colleagues in the company. It really needs to be on everyone’s agenda.

Here you can read the whole Interview.