Choose Courage over Fear
“Find your voice” and “Don’t be afraid to ask” immediately come to my mind as the two most valuable pieces of advice that I would give to women seeking growth in their careers.
For a significant portion of my career, I relied on my work ethic and knowledge of the business to see me through to the next big assignment or the next promotion. However, as my career progressed, the stakes began to rise. It was not as much about what I knew as it was about my ability to be visible and let my career objectives be known.
My experience is that many women struggle to find their voice. Especially if they are a part of a male dominated profession or industry, they often feel less empowered. But, I encourage women to use the attributes that make them different to their advantage. Women can bring a different approach and perspective to any conversation. Using their innate ability to be authentic can work in their favor.
Additionally, many women believe that to progress to the next level, they need to possess a minimum of 80–90 percent of the job requirements, while their male counterparts believe that if they possess 50 percent, they are worthy of the position. One of the large differentiators here is that due to this belief, woman will often not express their interest in the position.
The first step is letting your goals be known. Don’t let your fear of not getting the position stop you from throwing your hat in the ring. Why? Because, once your name gets out there as someone who wants more, it becomes more likely that you’ll be considered when the next opportunity arises.
Lastly, know your worth. You are just as valuable an asset as your male counterpart. Commanding the recognition that is in alignment with your impact on an organization IS acceptable.
Courage over fear, being authentic, and possessing a sense of self-confidence are guiding principles that I refer to often as fuel to keep me going. I encourage every woman to find her own unique fuel source.