Women In Business

Diamonds in plain sight: Business women and the challenges of the modern environment

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It’s fair to say that business is challenging full stop. This is how competitive environments function. However, it’s also fair to say that despite this being the 21st Century and a host of equality initiatives over the last 100 years – women still face challenges in business that men don’t.

Today, I’d like to take a look at some of the biggest challenges facing women leaders in business and how they might overcome them:

Getting equal treatment

Many women complain about being overlooked and undervalued in the workplace. However, it’s fair to say that women are often their own worst enemies on this front. Google, for example, is committed to equal opportunities.

Yet, when they examined their scheme to allow anyone to put themselves forward for a promotion – they found a major problem. Women just didn’t put themselves forward as often as men did. So, they weren’t getting promoted at the same rate.

If you want to get equal treatment; you need to make sure you speak up when you need to, you put yourself forward when you can and most importantly of all – make sure that people hear your message and your value when appropriate.

Getting support from other women

Did you know that while women are often treated unfairly by men, they are often treated much worse by each other? The “sisterhood” is frequently spoken of, but it can be missing in action in reality.

This is partly due to a principle called unconscious bias. This is a bias that stems from the traditional confines of Western society. To fend off unconscious bias, we need to keep checking our actions and ask, “Am I being as supportive as I can of the other women around me?”

If you are, great! If not, you can change course and reach out to build a real sisterhood.

Generating revenue

It’s easy to get into running your business so much that you lose sight of what’s really important. Women need to know, business is about money. Your efforts should all be about generating revenue and getting the cash flowing.

You can delegate. You can hire other people to do things for you. Whenever possible, you should do this. This frees you up to watch the bottom line and to direct the ship towards the X on the Map where treasure lays!

Getting your confidence up

I know what this is like because I used to struggle with confidence myself. Women with great competence and successful businesses still find it hard to feel confident in themselves. Well, there’s some good news here.

It’s easy to feel confident. Firstly, make sure you know your purpose as a person and your purpose as a business. Be clear about these things. Check in every day to make sure you know this.

Confidence flows from having a direction in life and being certain that you feel enthusiastic about that direction. Say goodbye to muddy waters and hello to plain sailing.

Building alliances

You can’t expect everyone in a competitive environment to warm to you in a heartbeat but nor should you expect to be sat outside of the decision-making circle forever. Women can be shy about building the strategic alliances they need to stop the sharks of the business world from swallowing them whole.

Identify the critical people to your career or business and reach out to them. Build your brand and make sure that you are positioning yourself as the expert in what you do. Make sure to check in with your network on a regular basis and boost your connections whenever possible.

Conclusion

The problems facing women in the modern workplace are not insurmountable. We’ve come a long way since women got married young and rarely left the home and the road ahead is far less rocky. To tackle our issues, we need to identify them and give ourselves the time to develop solutions.

Make sure you have thinking time in your day. Then act on your best thoughts.

About Tammy Keers

Tammy Keers is a creative wunderkind, whose unique and distinctive take on the jewellery design has seen her make her mark on an industry steeped in tradition. Bringing a feminine flavour to all her pieces, the founder of Artisans Gems and Jewels combines technique with art.

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