Business of Men

Leading like a lady in a man’s world


“Globally, women earn only three-quarters as much as men—even with the same level of education, and in the same occupation,” Whilst this is a sad statistic in the 21st Century, it is, unfortunately, true, and means us women generally have to work harder, play harder and be bolder to reach the top. However, as women, we also have some unique qualities to enable us to be super successful business people. Women are savvy, unique and perceptive. Here are just a few strategies that you can implement to help you reach your business and career goals and play your part in creating an equal working environment for both sexes.

Believe in yourself

This one is top of the list because it is fundamentally the most important piece of advice I can give to you. For all areas of your life, personally and professionally. If you don’t believe in yourself, it’s difficult for other people to believe in you either. It’s a fact of life that throughout both your professional and personal career, male or female, you are going to receive knockbacks. Keeping faith in yourself throughout these moments is important if you are going to ultimately reach your goals.

Be resilient

When things go wrong, remember, this isn’t a reflection on you or your abilities. You are a human, and humans make mistakes – that is how we learn and grow. It’s learning from our mistakes that are most important. It’s critical to remember that success is never a straightforward path, it’s a combination of hard work and perseverance down an incredibly windy road before you reach your destination.

Be confident

One of the key tips that I can give to career minded females is to be confident – even if you don’t feel it. To be taken seriously and have your voice heard or take a seat at the table, you need to not be intimidated having business conversations with both males and females that are more senior than you. One thing I have found that has helped me with my confidence in the workplace is through engaging in conversations with my more senior colleagues that are non-work related. Ice-breakers and small talk at the beginning of meetings really help you to relax and generally creates a less intense atmosphere before you get down to hardcore business. Don’t be afraid of engaging in everyday conversation with your colleagues out on the business floor. Once you have established some common ground, and realise these people are just ordinary people too, they will appear much less intimidating the next time you have to do business with them. I find that Executives and Senior Leaders also go easier on you if they like you! Hey, you might even make a couple of new friends too!

Trust your intuition –and don’t be bullied

Sometimes it is easy to feel belittled into keeping quiet or not raising concerns. In what can sometimes be a cut-throat world, unfortunately, there are people that are out there for themselves and feel threatened by competition. Luckily, there is legislation in place to protect women against sexual discrimination in the workplace. The Act is wide-ranging but covers such topics such as discrepancies in rates of pay between male and female counterparts, sexual harassment and rules of policy that appear to be unfair against a particular sex. If we are serious about making a change, it’s important to know your rights and how you can enforce them. If you have an inclination that something is wrong or inappropriate, you’re probably right. Trust your gut and seek some advice.

Be a role model for other women in the workplace

If you’re lucky enough to have had a mentor guiding you through your career, you will appreciate how invaluable they can be. It’s really motivating to have someone you can aspire to be and to have someone you feel you are able to go to for help and advice along the way. Be that woman for someone too. Not only is this a great way to support one another as women on our way to the top, it’s also incredibly rewarding to feel that you are helping others, and brings a multifaceted, non-professional element to your role. Play an active part in your business – whether that be by contributing in social activities, or helping to redesign your company’s website – you’ll find that being more engaged automatically raise your profile within the business, and become known as someone who is approachable and friendly. Positivity attracts positivity – keep a smile on your face and always be happy to help!

Build a support network and use it

It’s satisfying to see women empowering other women. When things aren’t so rosy, it’s helpful to have a network that you can rely upon for support. It can also be quite isolating and unhealthy dealing with problems alone, and things can get magnified and become more stressful than they need to be if you start to over-analyze things in your head. Having people that you can go to not only helps to alleviate your work- stresses, it’s also a great way of learning and sharing ideas. Having another point of view on something and other people to bounce ideas off can really help to improve the quality of your work. Not to mention give some clarity and perspective to a situation you might find yourself in.

While we are on our way to making gender equality a reality, we have a long way to go. It’s easy for us to sit back and let other women do the work, but it is much more satisfying to be part of the change you want to see. Being a confident, independent woman who knows how to stand her own is the key to having your opinion valued. With the protections we have in place and the physical and technological support system at your fingertips, there is no better time to start than now. Go get em’, girl!

About Louise Procter

Louise Procter is a writer for by the beach, on the sunny South Coast of NSW she enjoys sipping a good strong coffee whilst creating articles that provide information and inspiration to readers to help them in their everyday lives.

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