- Isabella Lenarduzzi

Let’s give birth to a radically different future!

The JUMP Forum that happened last Thursday prompted us to question the real meaning behind JUMP. On the occasion of the Forum’s fifth birthday, I wanted to expand on this year’s theme, “From gender diversity to leadership variety”. Why? Isn’t gender diversity the ultimate goal?

More Women in management produces a space for men and women to expand the way they lead. Beyond a gender diversity programme companies should seek to diversify the range of leadership behaviors and spread good practices within the organisation.
New leadership models and corporate structures need to be developed that are more in tune with the competencies and leadership approaches of the women executives whom companies need to attract and keep if they are to remain competitive. Women were being urged to conform to a mainstream leadership style that was considered a fundamental requirement for anyone who hoped to exert authority in public life.

Henceforth the mass arrival of women on the labour market is bringing more diversity in leadership and creating competitive advantage by changing business culture making it more respectful of everyone, both men and women.

JUMP is therefore not only a tool for helping more women reach the top, but above all it is an avenue for change, leading society towards greater responsibility and sustainability. The success of women is fundamental to this transformation. Becoming aware of this ultimate aim of JUMP, I met Marc Luyckx at TED X Brussels. I heard him voice my thoughts exactly: “Women are the leading vectors of change”. It was therefore obvious to me that he was the right person to lead the 2011 Forum. Here is what he wrote about JUMP: “In pushing for more women in leadership positions in Business and administrations, JUMP is pushing towards Humanity’s survival, because those women could propose a shift in the enterprises’ agendas towards more CSR and Sustainability.”

We live in a marvellous era when for the first time in humanity, we can at last choose our own path. What we do with it is our responsibility. We can imprison ourselves just as we were imprisoned before, but with different roles. We should make the most we can of our lives, because now we have access to everything. Furthermore, if we want to become a force and a voice in this world, we have to support each other as women and not let ourselves be distracted by rivalry. This type of archaic jealousy is still encountered far too often. It is mainly the consequence of thousands of years of domination.

A new culture, a new identity for men and women is possible. The world needs truly liberated women working alongside men so that the world can take the essential steps towards greater responsibility.

I can’t resist finishing with a quote from the philosopher Alain Touraine, who explains that the reason why Women want power is to share it: “The world of women, whose goal is not the destruction of domination but the construction of self, is driven by the desire to experience an existence which they themselves have transformed, and the re-ordering of society. Men, in contrast, conquered the world by concentrating power within the hands of just a few.”