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Women in Leadership Programme

Are You Board Ready?

Creating capable women who contribute to company success


with Claire Button
Kate Atkin MSc


This programme has been designed for successful women to recognise their success, claim their confident selves and create opportunities for progression to senior or board level.  Based on research, personal experience and evidence from industry, the content has been carefully crafted to create an outstanding programme for women.

To increase women’s impact on business.

increase women’s skills sets to compete on an equal ground with men, so the business has the best people to choose from.

Research by McKinsey in 2015 showed that companies with a diverse board are 35% more likely to have financial returns above the respective industry average, yet still companies don’t have enough women willing or eager to move to a board or senior management position.  In the same year the Davis Report stated that FTSE100 companies have over a quarter of women at board level, but the FTSE 250 has under 20%.  The report proposed that FTSE350 companies have 33% female representation at board level by 2020. Currently, there are not enough suitably qualified women willing to take up these board positions.  As women make up more than 50% of the population, even if the 33% target is reached, is it enough?

Women approach their career and business in a different way from men. A 2012 report by McKinsey  ndicated that most women didn’t want to reach the top as only 41% of the 200 successful women interviewed declared an aspiration to join the C-suite.  Why do women put their hands up for opportunities less often?  It may be down to a lack of confidence, a lack of skills or a lack of opportunities to do so.


The WiL programme enables women to shine alongside men, and reach their potential. This comes through:

1. Knowledge – of their fit in the workplace; of what organisations are looking for from board members and of what stakeholders require.

2. Skills development – such as how to network effectively and negotiate in a male dominated environment; how to speak up and contribute in senior meetings; courage to take difficult decisions.

3. An honest look at themselves – an appraisal of what needs developing and what skills gaps need plugging; how to articulate achievements, self-promote and ask questions; develop a willingness to push themselves out of their comfort zone; challenge limiting beliefs.

4.  Increasing their abilities – to succeed to being “Board Ready”

Measuring Success: We will be monitoring the programme’s impact through regular participant feedback and their career progression over subsequent months.  Published data will be available after the first two programmes.


Dates: 12th October, 2nd & 23rd November, 7th December 2017
Cost:  £500 per module, or £1,500 for all 4 modules booked in advance
Email to reserve your place

by Kate Atkin and Claire Button


A qualified Executive Coach, Claire works closely with senior level women, and men, in terms of their career progression. These women may already hold board positions, or be considering what they could add to a company at board level. Women often approach this step in a very different manner to that adopted by men, and Claire encourages such women to reflect on their experience and contributions to the organisations they have been involved with. This often enables a woman to recognise the impact they have, and can continue to have, within an organisation.

Acutely aware of the issues surrounding women in leadership, particularly around a lackof women in, or applying for, senior positions, Claire is passionate about supporting women to acknowledge their contribution to company success, as well as reflecting on areas that need strengthening.

Having had a career break to raise her children, Claire is particularly interested in the
challenges facing returnees – including both the woman’s own concerns and those from potential employers. As a single mother, Claire is aware of the importance of blending work and life in the most sustainable, and beneficial, way.



Kate is an inspirational speaker, training consultant and expert in the imposter phenomenon.  With nearly 20 years of experience as a trainer and facilitator, Kate has worked with many clients on business, management and communication issues.  A highly skilled listener, her style is both supportive and challenging.

Kate comes from a farming background in Lincolnshire and now lives in Cambridge.  She had a successful career as an international manager with Barclays Bank plc before starting her own learning and development
business in September 2000.

In 2015 she completed an MSc in Applied Positive Psychologywhich has brought insights into well-being, meaning and positivity that she isincorporating into her work.  This also led to opportunities to lecture at Cambridge University Judge Business School on their EnterpriseWISE programme and their post-graduate diploma in entrepreneurship.  Kate is continuing with her research, currently focussing on courage, confidence and the imposter phenomenon.  Kate is author of The Presentation Workout and The Confident Manager.