Business Insider recently sat down with Sandra Horbach, the cohead of US buyouts at the $158 billion Carlyle Group, a private-equity firm.
Described as a trailblazer, Horbach is one of Carlyle's most senior women. She represents a rarity in the industry; only 7% of senior positions in buyouts are held by women, according to the data tracker Preqin.
Horbach's buyout group oversees about $70 billion in enterprise value, as of the end of last year.
Asked about what women could do to improve their careers in private equity, Horbach said women needed to move out of their comfort zones.
"I think women don't always put themselves in positions where they can be successful because they don't feel as though they are necessarily as qualified," Horbach said. "There's a statistic that shows a man will apply or job if he's 50% qualified for the job whereas women won't apply until she's 100% qualified."
Here's the rest of her quote:
"So I always tell women, raise your hand, volunteer for tough assignments, don't wait until you're 100% prepared to do anything. Jump into things and swim. Take chances. Women are often more risk-averse with their careers, so I encourage women to take chances and volunteer for tough assignments. Likely they'll do a great job and they'll be recognized and rewarded and hopefully promoted as a result of that."