In a recent survey of working adults conducted by Accenture, 68 percent of the women thought it took hard work and long hours to advance in a company. The result often leaves women feeling burned out and resentful for the lack of appreciation for their efforts.
In reality, people don’t advance into top positions just because they work harder and give up their lives for the company. Most successful men will tell you that if you want power, you have to take it. You have to speak up, acknowledge your value and love your power.
I do live 360 interviews for my executive women clients. No one has ever suggested my clients should work harder. Most often the suggestions for improvement include:
- Increase your visibility by sharing your ideas and unique perspective more often.
- Link what you know to the bigger picture so everyone can see your vision.
In other words, show the world what you know. This makes you indispensable. This gives you leverage for choosing your career path. This lets people see you as an inspiration instead of an irritation.
In meetings, don’t wait until you are sure your comments are perfect to speak up. Announce your idea as a work in progress then share it. Link your observations to the overall goals. Share what is going well to drive a hopeful, positive perspective. Share your vision of what is possible no matter who may shoot it down. At least they will understand your passion and motivation.
Also, build your key relationships by letting stakeholders and senior leaders know how you can help them. Share data and resources they might find useful. Help to solve their problems and they will become your champions.