Gill Donnell – a champion for women

Posted March 22nd, 2014
Gill Donnell

Gill Donnell – Celebr8 Success

The new book, Celebr8 Success, by Gill Donnell aims to encourage women in the workplace to succeed.  Gill Donnell, reached a senior rank in the police, she now runs a business called Unlock your Daughters.  She has always been keen to inspire women to take their place in the workforce.  Her new book focuses on boosting the confidence of women.

During our conversation Gill said that women often shy away from success.  They are more likely to focus on what they can’t do rather than what they can do.  This means women often don’t apply for leadership roles.  Even though they are capable they often lack confidence in their skills.

What is causing women to avoid leadership roles?

Do women have low aspirations?  Do they lack the ability?  Or is it, as Gill Donnell suspects, that they lack confidence?  Maybe it’s a mixture of many things.

We are constantly bombarded in the media with images, which promote the looks of women.  In fact we (women included) spend a lot of time passing judgment on what someone is wearing rather than what they are saying.  Does this all add to the low expectations that women have of themselves?

How can we raise the aspirations of young women?

I (Liz) remember once being stumped whilst coaching.  At the time I was working with a couple of Year 10 girls and we had just completed a ‘vision board.’ A vision board is a montage of images, which helps people to creatively imagine their future.

The girls had cut out and selected dozens of photos from magazines that inspired them.  The idea was for them to get a sense of where they wanted to go in life.  What career would they pursue?  What really motivated them?  What would be their next step beyond school?

I was so delighted to see them complete these vision boards in such an animated way.  When we paused to reflect on their future I was floored by their answer.  “So what are you inspired to do when you leave school?” I asked.

“I want to leave school and have a baby,” said one girl.  “Me too,” said the other.

I was stunned.  Whilst on the one hand I was delighted they had a positive outlook on creating a family – I was so disappointed that this was all they could see as a future.  These were bright girls who could make an incredible contribution to the world and society.

Gill Donnell provides steps for success

In her book Gill Donnell outlines the steps for success.  She provides ideas and exercises for women to help them step beyond their self-imposed limitations and to step into the world.  This book is an amalgamation of advice and inspiration to ignite the passion within women.  You can find more information about the book here

This short interview, as part of the ‘coffee chats’ series gives a great flavour of the book from the author Gill Donnell