Despite progress over the past few decades, women still face immense barriers to advancement in the workplace – both systemic and psychological. Women continue to command lower salaries and are under-represented in senior leadership roles across corporate America. How do women not only challenge their organizations to give them their due, but overcome their own uncertainties about being able to succeed in male-dominated companies and industries?

In this episode, Minds Worth Meeting converses with Kimberly Ramalho, vice president of communications and public Affairs for Lockheed Martin Rotary and Mission Systems (RMS). As a high-ranking executive with the world’s largest defense contractor, Ramalho has more than 25 years of experience in navigating obstacles to climbing the corporate ladder within an industry that is – historically – overwhelmingly male.

Women in business, says Ramalho, must ensure they bring their own expertise to the top table and are heard by their colleagues on the issues that matter. Unconscious or deliberate, bias often causes male counterparts to ignore female voices, reinforcing uncertainty and insecurity. To succeed, women must overcome their own doubts and voice their opinions consistently and effectively, as well as not be timid in demanding equal treatment. In doing so, women can change the narrative of gender in the workplace, getting what they need, want and deserve.

There is still a long way to go in achieving gender equality, whether in the corporate world or in society more broadly. But that journey hinges on individuals’ courage in standing up for themselves and their fellow women. Women truly can “have it all” as leaders – and Kimberly Ramalho helps show you how that’s possible.

Follow Kimberly Ramalho on Twitter: @kimberlyramalho and on LinkedIn.

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