As American women fight for gender equality in corporate America many women still struggle with getting the respect they deserve within their work environments.
So just why do some women continue to get overlooked for that promotion?
Read on to find out 6 reasons why.
While most career women already know that they’ll need to ask for a promotion in order to be considered for one, the fear of rejection remains hard to overcome.
More than 1 in 5 women said the top reason they didn’t apply for a job was that they didn’t want to put themselves out there if they were likely to fail, according to an analysis published by Harvard Business Review
Doing some homework can make it less intimidating to approach your boss and tell her why you deserve a promotion. Create and practice talking points with a friend, so that you go into the meeting prepared and confident. Then, ask that friend to check in with you to find out how the meeting went. Knowing you’ll have to report back may make you less likely to chicken out.
Whether your boss prefers Slack, text messages or old-fashioned email, it’s important to be accessible on whichever medium she prefers. However, it’s also easy to rely so much on digital communication that it becomes harder to make a personal connection.Your move: Pop into your boss’s office (or schedule some FaceTime if one of you works remotely) to go over big projects. Discussions about your career path at the company should take place face-to-face whenever possible.
Nearly 20 percent of professionals surveyed by LinkedIn
said that their relationships with coworkers have made them more competitive in their careers.Your move:
Make an effort to chat with not only those you know but also new officemates or folks from different departments. “That’s often where you can increase your visibility and find out good information about what’s happening across the company,” says Penny Locey, vice president and career development specialist at Keystone Associates. “As you move up the ladder, one of the key skills people are looking for is the ability to collaborate and maintain effective relationships cross-functionally.”
You hit every monthly target your boss sets and clock the longest hours on your team. But when it comes to leadership roles, higher-ups are looking for people who also have robust “soft skills” like communication, collaboration and presentation. More than three-quarters of employers surveyed by Career Builder
said that such skills are just as important as “hard skills” that can be learned on the job. But soft skills may not be spelled out in a job description.Your move:
Find a company leader in a position that you’d like to be in someday and emulate her actions. Communicating authority can be particularly tough for young women, whose speech patterns may make them seem more junior than they are, says Tara Mohr, the author of Playing Big: Practical Wisdom for Women Who Want to Speak Up, Create, and Lead
. Make sure you’re not undermining your own credibility by starting sentences with “I’m sorry, but…” or raising your pitch at the end of a sentence to make it sound like a question, Mohr says. Taking an improv or public-speaking class can give you confidence and poise and help eliminate such habits.
It’s normal to get defensive when we’re criticized, but when your boss makes negative comments about your work — either during an annual review or in a less formal manner — she’s giving you insight into any potential performance issues that could be holding you back as you try to advance in your career.Your move: Monster.com
career expert Vicki Salemi suggests writing down everything your boss said in the meeting so that you can return to it later when your emotions have cooled down. Then, make an action plan to address any issues. “Sometimes getting negative feedback can be a really good thing — when you focus on improving, your next conversation with your boss can be centered around how you took something negative and turned it into a positive,” she says. “You were in action mode, and you listened to their input, which is going to help you in your career in the long-term, beyond this current role.”
Sometimes it’s just not possible to advance at your current job. If you’ve been passed over multiple times for a promotion, or the company is downsizing, your current opportunities might be limited.Your move:
The job market has (finally) recovered from the recession. In February 2016, employers added more than 240,000 jobs
, and the unemployment rate remains at an eight-year low of less than 5 percent. There are plenty of opportunities for talented workers. “It’s always good to be taking interviews so that you know what opportunities are out there, and so you’re confident in your own value the next time an opportunity for advancement comes up, whether or not it’s at your current company,” says Nicole Williams, founder and CEO of Works, a consulting firm aimed at helping women move forward in their careers.
Other Posts You May Like: