As a young woman trying to make a place for herself in, what is still, a man’s world, I have recently been studying and evaluating what makes successful women in business. Through this research I have discovered some of the pitfalls that women in business are facing and hopefully, how to avoid them. Now this is definitely not meant to undermine the amazing progress made by our foremothers, who, through all of their hard work, have managed to secure us a place in the business world. But, there is always room for improvement, and so here are the top four things working against us career girls and how I’m trying to avoid them…
PITFALL #1: EMOTION
It has been biologically proven, time and time again, that females are more emotional than guys. We tend to take things a lot more personally than guys do, and we also tend to use our hearts in our decision-making rather than our heads. Something we need to come to terms with…NOTHING IN BUSINESS IS PERSONAL. We have to just learn to let go and look at things with a more logical perspective. There is also a way to use our emotion to our advantage. Why not turn all of our emotion into passion? Passion sells! The only way to convince someone of something is to speak about it with genuine passion.
PITFALL #2: EACH OTHER
We know, as women, that we are our own worst enemy. Women are fabulous in general but they are also infamous for being vengeful and vindictive (come on girls, be honest). I truly believe that in many instances, women hold women back from success. First of all, there is the indisputable competitive nature females possess. Look at Britney Spears, she is probably the most despised woman in the world and only because she is wildly successful.
Also, unfortunately, the rumour mill often starts with women: “You know how she got to the top,” are generally not words that come out of the mouths of guys. Women are also grudge holders. Guys are typically very good at letting things go. I have known, on the other hand, many women who have held grudges for years, even decades!!! We need to start supporting each other. It is the only way that we can succeed. Put all of the negative aside and be a supportive force to the females in your lives. When one of us succeeds, we are all better for it.
PITFALL #3: FAMILY
Now, we all know that it is absolutely possible to have it all. Women do it all the time: husbands, children, dogs and careers. The truth of the matter though, is that it takes double the amount of work, energy and dedication for a woman to have a family and a career. Women should not have to choose between the two, but too often, that’s what it comes down to. My recommendation is always to do what will make you happy. But if you do choose to have a family and a career…EXPECT TO WORK TWICE AS HARD. You go girls!!!
PITFALL #4: MISTRUST
I would have to say that this is the number one thing holding us back. Unfortunately, it is not our fault. We are taught mistrust from the time we can speak. Ever wonder why guys are so good at networking? They never think ‘ulterior motives’. We, on the other hand are taught that any guy who offers us something wants something in return. Guys, not having these complexes, make far better contacts and therefore, move up the ladder far easier than women — it’s all about who you know. I met a guy in line for the bathroom once at a party. He said he could help me with my career and, of course, my first instinct was to walk as fast as I could the other way. But I wanted to test my theory. I stayed and talked with him and he has since become a mentor and a friend. Still, be careful out there, but keep in mind there ARE some great guys you can trust, you just need to take the time to find out which they are.
That’s the way I see it.
Sara Cauchon is a popular TV host on a numerous shows including GirlzTV, Rooms That Rock, Global News. And one of our friends: Sara has joined Faze on exciting trips to places like San Diego and Tobago!