To Keep Your Foot on the Gas, You Must Have Petrol in the Tank!
How low self-confidence affects women in business
As more families move towards a dual income to make ends meet and with more women entering the workforce, we like to believe there is more opportunity for women, at all levels in business, to reach their full potential and contribute to the success of businesses moving forward.
But it’s not the reality.
According to Pew Research, women in business are still lagging behind when it comes to leadership roles in business with only 26 percent of women in CEO roles in Fortune 500 companies, making up 5.2% of the female population.
According to Forbes Coaches Council, women globally face a range of unique challenges that affect them at all levels (not only leadership) and constantly affect their ability to get ahead. Some include:
- Sexism and gender bias
- Being treated equally
- Generating revenue
- Not being confident at work
- Women leave to have children – then struggle to re-enter the workforce
The real issue Women in business face
A lack of self-confidence is the greatest single issue women in business face today. Often women want to contribute, but struggle to find the words and actions (and self-belief) to back themselves.
- It’ never that women can’t do something, it’s that we doubt ourselves
- It’s not about not having the skills or competence, because you have plenty of that
- It will never be about ‘what could I say?’ because there is so much you can talk about
So, what IS the real problem?
We struggle to find our voice. To say what we think. To back ourselves. To put our viewpoint across. If you’re going to have a seat at the Boardroom table, you must add value. Make impact. Put your foot on the gas.
Many Organisations now have strategies in place to address gender inequality in their ranks, over time. For those that are doing this meaningfully (as opposed to tokenism) the impact women will have will be remarkable over time.
However, we women need to play our role here. To find our place and to learn to back ourselves. To realise that we can have all the policies and processes to help us, but unless we become our own best cheer-leader, with the self-belief and confidence we need, getting to where we should be may never happen.
Is there a simple answer?
Human behaviour is never simple, but these work.
- If you are a woman who struggles with self-confidence, find an ally (coach, mentor or strategist) who can help you build your confidence over time, by learning new ways of thinking, approaching problems and celebrating when you do well
- Think about what you do well and keep doing them
- Identify areas that you can improve and work out ways to improve
- Get a coach to help you practise business conversations that you fear
- Learn where your lack of confidence comes from
- Get help with strategies to improve your confidence, over time.
We know the many struggles women in business face. We know how tough it can be. We know sometimes you may feel alone. But you’re not! We’re here!
Let’s have a chat.