Nancy Fredericks pens Women Lead Change's "Mindful Mondays" column, appearing the second Monday of every month. Fredericks is a preeminent Business Executive Strategist, Author and Thought Leader. Corporations like Johnson & Johnson, PepsiCo, Adobe, Allergan and Transamerica have retained her to optimize individual and organizational performance. You can find her at www.CareerStretchZone.com. The views of Nancy Frederick's blogs represent her own and not necessarily the views of Women Lead Change.
The times are ripe for women to lean into their strengths and realize all their business dreams. And yet, we can’t afford to ignore Red Flags popping up along the journey.
Are you prepared to spot your career Red Flags?
Red Flag #1: Do You Hear Yourself Saying….?
I’m not qualified to apply for that assignment.
I don’t have the required talent or skill.
Somehow, many of us buy into a mistaken career formula. It’s a truly small view one that only attributes perfection as the qualifier for competency. With such a mindset, we women limit the scope of the jobs we go after, which in turn, shrinks our career possibilities.
The reality is we often have a misperception regarding the hiring process. Rarely, does an applicant meet a 100 percent of the job’s criteria. Men seem to tap into this truth better than women. Hewlett Packard found men applied for a position if they were 60 percent qualified; whereas, women didn’t put their hat in the ring unless they judge themselves 100 percentcompetent. Recalibrate your confidence meter and stand up for yourself in big, bold ways!
Red Flag #2: Do You Find Yourself Distancing or Withdrawing From Business Relationships because….?
You believe an executive is too high up the
corporate ladder to connect with you.
Or he or she is untrustworthy and doesn’t measure up
to your relationship standards.
The good news, without question, is women own the domain of deep, meaningful relationships. The not so grand news is women sometimes find it difficult to comfortably, and with integrity create strategic, targeted ones. The snag comes from the need for emotional affinity. Women have an inherent expectation of “respect,” “trust,” and “rapport” in a relationship. And in the business world where relationships are a prerequisite for producing products and services—emotional connectivity is a plus, not a necessity.
Studies by Catalyst confirm women’s relational networks have less clout than do men’s. This difference accounted for male executives receiving 15 percent more promotions than did women. In the research, men share how their network aided them in planning their next career move. Women, on the other hand, reported the emotional support they receive.
Red Flag #3: Do You See Yourself as a Fraud, So You’re Uncomfortable Working Outside Your Comfort Zone Since….?
You believe playing it safe as you check one item after another
off your “to do” list is your success formula.
Within, you lack the confidence to perform above-and-beyond your specific job responsibilities; thus, never develop the pioneering spirit indispensable to leadership. This attitude keeps you from asking for the big assignment, which ends up stunting your career growth. And it silences you when every fiber of your being wants you to courageously speak up about an idea or take a stand when something doesn’t sit well with you.
You see not owning your power (your confidence) impacts every area of your career as it stops you from acting. Building up your belief in self is just as valuable, if not more so, for your career success as developing your competencies. So, start stepping over the shadow of yourself and move forward into the light of the greatness you richly deserve.
The time for you to soar is here and now. Take the Red Flag challenge, and then, prepare yourself to secure the high ground you’ve always aspired to garner.