For modern women, it seems like life has become significantly easier. Unfortunately, sexism is still common in most workplaces, and comes in a variety of guises. The gender pay gap exists, and it can be incredibly frustrating to try and make sure that you are seen and valued in the workplace as a woman. For the most part, a lot of women feel consistently underappreciated at work. Busting the glass ceiling isn’t easy, but there are a few things that you can do to make sure that you are taken more seriously at work. Read on to find out more.
Demonstrate Competency & Confidence
The truth is that you cannot expect things to be fair; the men in your workplace are far more likely to be noticed and rewarded for simply doing the bare minimum. Therefore, you will need to work harder in order to get noticed. The best thing that you can do is to always appear competent and confident. Speak up more in meetings and be assertive, although you will need to be wary of the fact that assertiveness can be mistaken for bossiness which can have the opposite effect.
Put Yourself Forward
If you want an opportunity to be put forward for a promotion, to take on a new project or whatever it might be, you simply cannot wait to be asked. You have to volunteer yourself to put yourself forward. If you want to be taken seriously, then you need to show that you are a contender. Think about your resume. Is it going to adequately set you apart? Do you have the evidence to show that you can take on whatever it is that you are asking for? Some women find it helpful to take women’s leadership courses where they can learn more effectively how to get ahead.
Women are often penalized for the way that they display their emotions, especially in the workplace. Assertiveness is aggression, passion is hysteria, and so on. This means that you need to make an effort to regulate your emotions more, think about the way in which you are coming across. It is both unfortunate and unfair but necessary. Above all else, you should never, ever cry in the workplace. Crying can be a natural reaction to frustration, stress or anger, but crying in front of colleagues will be to your detriment.
Ask For Advice
If there are any women in management positions that you admire, whether you know them personally or professionally, you should reach out to them for advice. Ask them how they got to be where they are and what you can do to advance your career and progress. You can also go to your managers and ask them the same thing. They might be able to offer you some constructive criticism and feedback to help you grow professionally.
Realistically, the advice above is not going to help you to dismantle the sexist and misogynistic structures that exist within the business world. However, it can help you to gain an insight into those practices and how you can avoid being stereotyped and overlooked. Think about how you present yourself in the workplace, you don’t have to compromise your femininity to be taken seriously, but you do need to be aware of how you are being viewed through a patriarchal lens.