Overcoming Workplace Fear

Overcoming Workplace Fear
Recently a young professional woman noted that she feared something almost as much as she feared public speaking. Her mention of a fear of public speaking was surprising because she is a “take charge” person, never reticent in a meeting or group.  She is an outstanding team leader, a good delegator, and she doesn’t shy away from conflict. So why the fear? Experts note that public speaking is one of the top two or three fears of the average person. It is so common that it ... Read more
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What Does Your Office Tell Others About You?

What Does Your Office Tell Others About You?
Have you ever walked into someone’s office and had to wait for them to take stacks of clutter off a chair so you could sit down. Or have you been repulsed by old take-out food containers sitting on your colleague’s desk or by putting your papers down on top of something sticky? Or maybe your coworker likes to work out after work and keeps gym clothes and shoes in the corner. These may seem like extremes, but they are more common than you might imagine. You also may be thinking ... Read more
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Avoiding Negative Optics

Avoiding Negative Optics
Recently, President Trump arrived 20 minutes late for a Gender Equality Advisory Committee meeting at the G7 Summit in Quebec. His entrance was disruptive and rude, and it was documented in news reports around the world. The optics were especially negative. Think back to a recent meeting at your workplace. Was anyone late? Were you late? If so, what optic did your lateness provide for others? A few possible scenarios include: 1. You were viewed as someone who thinks she is self-important. ... Read more
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What’s Your Hurry?

What’s Your Hurry?
“What’s your hurry?” “You have plenty of time to get ahead in your career.” “Take some time for fun.” “Why would you change jobs when you can coast in the one you have?” “Don’t be so competitive.” “Stop pushing yourself so hard.” Perhaps friends and relatives have made statements like those above  to you. Perhaps they are well meaning and they do feel like you are working too much. Or, perhaps they ... Read more
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Would You Promote You?

Would You Promote You?
Most promotions are not automatic, and, generally, a variety of factors enter into the decision making process. Sometimes there are annual quotas such as the number of open positions for tenure decisions at a university. Sometimes a business is quite small, and there is a very short career ladder. Other jobs, like many in government, require a certain score on a civil service exam in order to be promoted. And, it is a reality that not all promotions are fair. For example, a family member of ... Read more
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Are you Managing Your Career?

Are you Managing Your Career?
Remember how you felt at the start, when you were looking for your first job? All you wanted was a toehold, a way in, a chance. But it felt like everyone else had control of your future. I got my first job out of college because I could type. And yes, I was taken aback when the hiring manager later told me the reason she interviewed me. Typing wasn’t supposed to be what got me a job—my BA in Spanish was supposed to be wildly appealing to the Pan American Health Organization! Years later, I ... Read more
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If You Want to Be Heard, Listen

If You Want to Be Heard, Listen
You are in a staff meeting with your boss. She details a possible situation that might occur and is asking for ways to address it. You have an idea that you think might work. Your hand quickly goes up and you speak forcefully. Two of your colleagues begin shaking their heads “no.” As soon as you finish, the negative responses start. There are some things you hadn’t thought about—a couple of weaknesses in your plan, but you still feel the need to defend your idea. The ... Read more
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Be Heard Over Male Chatter

Be Heard Over Male Chatter
Are there different communication patterns for men and women at your workplace? Are male and female voices given equal credit? Do men monopolize the conversations, using louder voices and talking over women? If so, you need to find a way not just to enter the conversation, but to get your ideas heard. The following are some suggestions that may help you become more visible and assertive, especially during meetings: •First, choose your timing. While you do want to speak in most discussions, ... Read more
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Being Bold (Part II)

Being Bold (Part II)
You recently began a new professional position and you are feeling a bit intimidated by your more experienced colleagues. You may be a bit uncertain about workplace protocols. You don’t want to be overbearing, but you don’t want to appear mousy or shy either. How bold should you be? You do need to make an effort to become integrated. The first step is to take the initiative to introduce yourself to others whenever you can. Don’t assume they know who you are. This includes ... Read more
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Being Bold (Part I)

Being Bold (Part I)
Recently, when walking through a  makeup section of a store, it was apparent that the color palette for this season is bold, bold, and bolder still. There were advertisements for bold nail polish, bold lipsticks, bold eye shadow, even bold hair colors. They looked lively and fun, but It made me wonder about the average woman and when and where they would use such colors. Casual settings would be fine, but would they be appropriate for the office and board room? The answer is it probably ... Read more
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