Unfortunately the negative consequences of labelling is a common issue, especially for women in leadership. Here is a case in point. Anita Mathews has been a committed and loyal employee of a multinational Bank for the past 33 years. She joined the Bank as an Officer and throughout her career, she moved across retail, treasury, communications and compliance. She had fantastic experience of managing large, complex teams. By virtue of being mobile, she had gathered significant international and multi-cultural experience under her belt. Conceptual and highly strategic in her thinking, she was confident, outspoken, insightful and never backed away from calling a ’spade a spade’. When I first met her, she had been waiting to be promoted to senior management for a few years. Every time her name came up in talent reviews, however, the words used to describe her were ‘aggressive’, ‘opinionated’, ‘difficult to please’. The result was obvious: managers were reluctant to put her into senior roles. Managers who had worked closely with her agreed that she was a victim of perception. One of them even went to the extent of saying, “She would be an asset to the Bank if only she was less intimidating and more lady-like”.