PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMME FOR WOMEN IN LEADERSHiP: THE MYTH OF DEMETER AND PERSEPHONE
Belinda Davison and Lesley Quilty | OLIVIER MYTHODRAMA
2016 ‘almost’ saw the first woman elected president of the United States, which highlights the progress women have made in leadership. However, the question remains, does the glass ceiling still exist and can a woman run an enterprise as successfully as a man?
A 2016 report by McKinsey & Co. & Lean In, found that women are still struggling and underrepresented at every level. The report found that “promotion rates for women lag behind those of men, and the disparity is the largest, at the first step up to manager. As a result, far fewer women end up on the path to leadership.”
We are living in a pivotal time, a time when women need to step fully into leadership roles without having to compromise and use so much masculine energy to 'get things done'. How can women fully embody the feminine aspect of themselves to create a balance with the strong masculine that they have had to inhabit, and in many cases, overplay?
It isInternational Women's Day on 8th March, a timely moment, for us to speak about how much we believe in empowering women to search deeply within themselves to find their unique power and authentic voice, knowing what we stand for and against, and having the courage and skills to articulate this clearly, to become even more successful.
About our programme
We are unveiling our 2.5-day experiential programme, which runs from 3-5th May, which leverages The Myth of Demeter & Persephone. The programme is unique, as we are using a powerful myth to engage, provoke and guide participants on a profound personal development journey.
In ancient times and for many centuries, this myth was originally used deliberately as a tool for transformation, promoting those who participated to deeply reflect on their lives and experiences. We will focus on the strong themes that the story reveals around women surviving and thriving in a masculine world and finding an authentic, strong and unique voice.
The programme explores the integration of three archetypal stages and roles in a woman's life and work: Maiden, Mother and Wise Woman. Most importantly, we investigate how we can move towards reunion and integration, both internally and externally, as we journey through these different stages.
This is a deeply personal journey that we invite women to travel on together in a contained, safe environment, to emerge as Persephone does in the story, regenerated, reborn and more fully herself. Participants will work in a mixture of plenary, small groups and pairs, and will engage in reflection, experiential exercises, creative expression and rehearsals.
How does the Myth of Demeter and Persephone makes it an ideal programme for women in leadership?
As women become more visible in the world, it's important that we don't confuse strength and power with learned behaviours that we have had to develop, and often over develop, from being surrounded by too much masculine. The story helps to reconnect us with the source and power of the Feminine which has been somewhat neglected and brings us closer to our true nature.
The Feminine approach and why we believe it’s important
The Feminine is something, it seems, that we have to work very hard at trying to imagine. One reason for this is that it has been so marginalised in western culture and particularly the world of work. It can be mistaken as something 'pink and fluffy' and 'ineffective' whereas, in fact, it is the opposite. We will be exploring how we women can reconnect with this powerful part of herself and start to 'show up' in a very different way, bringing more of herself to the workplace, not less.
This programme is aimed at women in leadership roles who want to develop the confidence and determination to own and stand more fully in their power.