I was caught recently downplaying one of my accomplishments. My husband, Mike, called me on it, which reminded me how engrained this behavior can become. I teach differences in gender communications. I teach women how to comfortably talk about their accomplishments. Yet, I too, found myself temporarily dropping back into an old behavior.
I am always happy to spend time talking to women who are trying to identify the best path for their career development. If you would like to see if this program is right for you, contact me at Susan@WomenLeadingTogether.com. If you know you need support in talking about your accomplishments, click here for details on the virtual program which starts March 4.
3 Reasons You Need to Say “I”
“If I keep my head down and do good work, they will notice and I’ll be recognized.”
This statement is false. We would like to believe that our hard work will automatically be noticed and that we will be appreciated and rewarded for it. That is often not the case, especially during stressful and chaotic times in business. To be recognized for your work, you have to let people know what you are accomplishing.
“It feels like bragging when I talk about myself.”
I frequently hear this statement from women. We learn at an early age to keep the playing field level with our friends. That is important to being “liked” and as little girls, we are taught that it is good to be liked.
Business is not about keeping the playing field level. It’s about competition. The foundation of capitalism is laid on healthy competition. We need to play in that game, and do so in a way that feels authentic to us as women.
Here are the three reasons you need to learn to communicate your accomplishments and differentiate yourself:
The squeaky wheel gets the grease. People are busy. If something isn’t brought to their attention, it is easy to overlook it. If you assume your manager or others are noticing, you may be wrong.
What may be obvious to you isn’t obvious to others. You are closer to your work. You know the challenges you face, how difficult it is to get something done, what you sacrificed to make it happen and how you creatively solved the problem. Everyone else sees the result, and from their perspective, it may have looked like an easy thing to do.
Your peers are talking about their accomplishments. In business, performance among individuals is relative. Not everyone gets promoted, not everyone gets the big raises and bonuses. Even if you are working in a team, you are contributing something unique. When it comes time to decide relative performance, you need to be able to distinguish and communicate your role. Your peers are doing so, especially the men, who are more likely to be comfortable with it.
This is hard for many women. It feels like bragging, yet if we don’t talk about our accomplishments, they can go unnoticed or unappreciated. I teach women how to overcome the reluctance to talk about themselves. They learn to do it in a way that feels comfortable and in a safe practice environment. It is one of the 3 key skills in my virtual program Creating Your Career Opportunities: 3 Key Skills to Getting What You Want™.
You may tell yourself, “It’s ok, as long as I know I’m helping.” Yes, serving is good. However, you invest a lot of your time, energy and effort into your work. You deserve to be recognized and appreciated for what you do.
If talking about your accomplishments is uncomfortable, I encourage you to sign up for Creating Your Career Opportunities™. Women who have attended this program have received promotions, higher performance factors and secured the jobs they wanted. The next program starts March 4th. Take the initiative to be recognized and appreciated. Contact Susan directly at Susan@WomenLeadingTogether.com to see if this program is for you or click here.
Susan Hodge created Women Leading Together in order to provide seminars, workshops, and coaching circles to help career women move forward to create fulfilling careers. Visit our website at www.WomenLeadingTogether.com.