As a woman in the workplace, you not only have to perform well in your role but have to overcome injustice and stereotyping too.
Despite it being 2019, old habits die hard and you will find that you will be questioned and underestimated by employers, coworkers and clients based on your gender.
Surprisingly, in the workplace more women tear each other down and become jealous if another woman does well.
The important thing to do in these situations is to remain professional and remember that the most important person you have to prove anything to is yourself.
In a work environment, you cannot expect anybody else to lift you up and to make you feel valued, you have to value yourself and also learn to appreciate the magnitude of that.
These 8 life-changing career tips will help women in the workplace grow in stature as a leader and become the best at what they do.
1. Be Confident in Every Decision You Make
No matter what your gender, sexuality and race or any traits that make you who you are, when you move into a position of power, this can also be a position of vulnerability.
Everybody around you is waiting for you to make a mistake and to prove to them that you are not worthy of your role.
When you move into a position of leadership, you will find that people who were once your close allies, might soon end up working against you. A lot of this is due to jealousy and entitlement in the workplace and you have to learn to separate personal relationships from the professional.
When you make a decision in the workplace, it’s important to make sure you are confident in what you are saying. You will find that people will be much more critical of you when you are in a senior position and will jump on the first thing that you say wrong.
When you first get promoted to a senior position, you will initially feel as though you have to justify and explain yourself.
However, over time you will come to appreciate that your decision holds weight and that, if you are confident in what you’re saying, you’ll soon earn the respect of your colleagues.
2. Take the Time to Listen to your Colleagues
It’s important to take the time to listen to your colleagues instead of always expressing your own opinions, so you can understand what drives and inspires them.
It’s important to give them the opportunity to speak about themselves, as this is the only way that you truly get to know what they think and feel. If you learn how people think and act, it will work in your favour when you’re promoted.
When you move into position of leadership, you’ll understand the inner dynamics of your office environment which will make it easier to find a resolution for any issues or problems that arise.
3. You Don’t Have to Change Based on Every Piece of Feedback You Receive
Everybody has an opinion of what is going on in the workplace. Whether you’re trying to make a change or working on a specific project or account.
It’s important to always ask for feedback, but it’s also important to remember that you should filter this and only take on board the advice that is relevant to your situation.
In some instances, people will be pointing out your flaws instead of giving constructive feedback, so it’s important to get into the habit of evaluating the quality of the feedback you receive.
If your boss tells you to be more assertive, or more organised, it’s important to ensure that you are doing this in order to improve as a professional. Humility is an important quality in a leader.
However, if somebody asks you to change who you are, despite being successful in what you do, you do not have to take this on board. There are always people – men and women – who will feel threatened by you as a person and you are not responsible for the way they feel.
4. Stereotypes Die Hard – Be The One Who Changes Perceptions
As a woman, you will have to fight that little bit harder to have a voice and to be taken seriously in some industries. Unfortunately, there is an archaic stereotype that women have a “glass ceiling” in the workplace.
This is because women were once seen as being too emotional and subservient to become a leader or a decision maker of a company. Whereas men were seen as being more dominant figures, perfect for management roles.
Unfortunately, some of these archaic values have not vanished and because of this, women can be underestimated and undervalued in the workplace.
The best and only way to overcome this is to keep asserting yourself and to keep exceeding expectations within your role. Preconceptions can often be the making of you professionally, as having something to prove can drive you forward.
You could choose to break through the professional glass ceiling by fighting that little bit harder and proving everybody wrong. But is that what you really want?
The best leaders come from a position of purpose and contribution and if that is what drives you, you will not only do great work but also find fulfilment in what you do.
5. Intonation Leads Assertion
Leading from the notion that women are undermined and underestimated in the workplace, it’s important to assert yourself in the right way. Your intonation says a lot about the situation and how confident you are with what you are saying.
Many people pose a sentence as a question without even realising how a high intonation at the end of a sentence can make it seem so. Doing this can make you seem unsure of what you are saying and can lead people to doubt you.
An excellent resource to learn how to express yourself better is the course Radiate Confidence: How to Create a 1000 Watt Presence by Alexa Fischer. It will teach you communication skills to excel in the business world and unlock your inner light, or presence, so you can easily, effortlessly connect with everyone you meet.
In order to ensure that you can convince others, you have to be assertive, but not aggressive, consistent and know exactly what you’re talking about. Practice being assertive in the mirror and do your research before any big meeting.
Alexa’s course, Pitch Yourself! Learn to Ignite Curiosity + Inspire Action will teach you to speak about your work with clarity, ease and authenticity. She will teach you how to grab the listener’s attention so they stay engaged and curious.
Once you take the time to learn how to communicate confidently, you will shine brightly and ignite curiosity in everyone you meet.
6. Transparency is the Key to Success
Honesty will get you a long way in the business world. In the business industry, there are a lot of dishonest people who will try and sell you a service and lie if things did not go as planned. It’s important to set yourself apart from such people.
If you’re completely transparent in what you are saying and what you are selling, you’ll gain the respect of your clients and colleagues. Failing to be transparent can discredit your company and your professional ethos.
If you highlight any issues that arise, you can find a solution to fix them. However, if you choose to be misleading and trick people, it will be difficult to convince them that you’re doing everything in your capability to help them out.
ALWAYS be honest with your clients, even if it’s something they don’t want to hear!
7. When You Feel Jealous, Do This Instead
It’s natural to be a little bit jealous of your coworkers if they are progressing and you seem to be standing still.
It’s important to know how to behave in a work environment. So, if you do feel a little bit of the green-eyed monster creeping in, remove yourself from the situation and regroup.
Being jealous or acting in a jealous manner in the workplace will never work in your favour. You will come across as immature and spiteful.
You need to consider how you react to certain individuals in the workplace, take yourself out of the situation and think about whether you are reacting a certain way purely out of jealousy, or whether you are justified in what you’re saying or doing.
If you feel jealous, understand that at your core it’s because you actually admire what that person is doing or because of who they are. And if you want to grow in abundance, you need to bless that which you want more of.
When you see something you are jealous of, turn your feelings around and bless them for being who they are, so you can attract more of that in your life.
8. Speak Up Against Harassment, Bullying And Injustice
As a woman in the workplace, you may have to shout that little bit louder and work that little bit harder to get noticed. Old stereotypes die hard and men in the workplace will doubt your ability while other women try to push you down.
In some circumstances, it’s important to speak up in the workplace if somebody is harassing you, putting you down or making you feel bad. It’s even more important to speak out if you see it happening to someone else.
Speaking out against harassment, bullying and injustice is the duty of every compassionate human being. If a senior member of staff or a fellow colleague is behaving badly with you, it’s important to call them out so that others will not have to endure the same behaviour.
This will lead to positive change in the workplace and will make people reevaluate how they treat others in and outside of work.
About the author:
Alice Porter works closely with Gorvins to better inform women in the workplace on how to become more successful.
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