Female executives who want to break into the upper echelons of the leadership hierarchy must not wait passively for their chance.
Sylvia Ann Hewlett, a business author and president of the Center for Talent Innovation, wrote a blog for hbr.org in which she stressed the importance of cultivating strategic alliances early on in their careers.
In her opinion, some women suffer from 'tiara syndrome', which means they believe strong results in their field will be enough to see them continually promoted, when in fact workplace relationships play a more important role when permanent and interim managers are seeking to reach the very top.
Ms Hewlett called on firms to help facilitate such interactions, saying: "Companies that have made significant investments in mentoring their standout women need to capitalize on this investment by creating pathways and forums where female talent and and senior leaders can connect and forge mutually beneficial alliances."
However, while establishing strong ties with colleagues has its benefits, a recent Harvard University report suggested that there can be a "cost of friendship" if people choose their business partners on factors not related to their ability at work.
According to dailymail.co.uk, the study showed that business partners who were from the same minority group, attended the same college or had previously started a firm together were all significantly less likely to succeed in their venture.