Why is it so difficult for some executives to acknowledge the expertise their teams bring to the table?
I previously experienced a woman who brought a breadth of value to a project and was shunned by her male boss. Interestingly, she had been specifically asked to partake in the effort by another executive.
Forget the fire that was lit within me for the way in which he took her contribution as subpar or inexistent. Imagine how she felt? How this behavior was dismissive of her talents and likely shattered her confidence.
No one has permission to do that ladies, it STOPS now!
Here are some of my tips to step into your power, even when someone else doesn't value you:
1. In the heat of the moment, take a few deep breaths and walk away before reacting or saying something you may regret (because I know a thing or two about blurting out something I wish I could take back).
2. Focus on your strengths consistently. Not everyone will appreciate what you have to offer, but when you have a strong sense of confidence - you will radiate it!
3. Do good work no matter what anyone else says. Other people may be willing to diminish their own value or standards, but NOT you! The key here is to not let them influence you. If you are known for setting the bar high, do not dim your light! Shine on!
4. Surround yourself with community. When we have like-minded women around us who we can confide in and have our backs, it feels great! They can be a sounding board and a safe space to release the frustration. And the ultimate prize is feeling acceptance and understood since sadly, a lot of times our fellow female friends and colleagues have felt de-valued at some point in their career.
While these situations can feel diminishing and frustrating, I hope you remember that we are in this together. We will continue to march forward towards a place where women are appreciated and we are not seen as an inconvenience.
Gentlemen, if you are reading this, thank you for sticking through. There are some men who actively support women and their professional contributions. We ask that you continue to back us as we champion how we, as women, can add value to organizations and even bring about a different flare that could up level your team and company.
Remember ladies and gents, we model the behavior we see. It's important to demonstrate the type of habits that supports growth and positivity.
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