Many people don’t fully understand power. Others think power would be great to have, but never actually work toward it. Still others decide they don’t want the responsibilities that go with power, or they feel that power is simply unattainable.
Alice Walker, author of The Color Purple, has said, “The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any.” Too often, this statement relates to women in the workplace. How can women achieve power? Why do they want it? Is having power really worth the effort it takes to obtain it?
One important secret about power is that power is always there for the taking. Actress Roseanne Barr has noted, “The thing women have yet to learn is nobody gives you power. You just take it.” Once you understand the necessity and the utility of power for achieving your personal goals and for bringing about positive change in the world, you will never settle for powerlessness again.
It’s important to recognize that personal power links to workplace success. It’s equally important to recognize and own your power. The following are 10 tips for helping you become a more powerful woman and a more successful employee:
•Be bold. Then be bolder still.
•Work harder than others.
•Take frequent risks.
•Never act dumb or helpless. Ever.
•Take criticism seriously but don’t dwell on it. (Keep in mind that much criticism is unwarranted.)
•Don’t be intimidated by mistakes and failures. Instead, learn from them and move on.
•Speak up. The more you speak up, the more you will be heard.
•Become a student of power and view other powerful women as your best teachers.
•Challenge discrimination, unfairness, and sexism wherever it is found.
•Ask for what you need and demand what you deserve.
Others who witness your growing power will try to undermine you, and, more than likely, the more successful you are, the less some people will like you. Don’t let those circumstances stop you or diminish your efforts. It all goes with the territory when you are becoming a powerful woman.