“If you just focus on the work, and you don’t let people sidetrack you, (getting where you’re going) will be the greatest feeling in the world.”

February 18, 20161 minute read

— Taylor Swift, accepting a Grammy for Album of the Year” and becoming the first women to win that award twice. An article on Inc.com by Lisa Abeyta says her remarks should be required reading for business leaders and CEOs because it serves as an example of how to preserve and promote your brand in spite of controversy or attacks from others.

In making the point that leaders under attack should bring focus to a higher cause, Abeyta applies a quote from “Originals: How Non-Conformists Move the World” by Adam Grant, who explores the challenges of what he calls “Speaking While Female”:

Grant has written, “Across cultures, there’s a rich body of evidence showing that people continue to hold strong gender-role stereotypes, expecting men to be assertive and women to be communal. When women speak up, they run the risk of violating that gender stereotype, which leads audiences to judge them as aggressive.”

Taylor Swift succeeded, Abeyta says, because she brought attention to the issue of gender equality in the music business instead of taking on the role of victim.