There’s a story on CNN about how women can get ahead in the workplace. I especially like rules 1 and 8:
1. Quit thinking the workplace is fair
[…] The reality is that gender matters, says professor Sheila Wellington, who teaches the course “Women in Business Leadership” at New York University’s Stern School of Business.
She says one of the most common mistakes women make is believing the playing field is equal. “They have it in their minds that it doesn’t matter if I’m a woman.”
By acknowledging the barriers ahead such as the difficulties of reintegrating into the work force after having a child, women can better plan their careers. Wellington also pointed out some managers still believe women may not work as hard or put in as many hours. A woman can overcome this assumption by putting herself forward and offering to do more work.
8. The way you look and talk matters
Your attire and speaking skills affect how others perceive you, and it’s nothing personal.
Author and psychologist Lois P. Frankel says company cultures may vary, but proper workplace etiquette is essential for landing the next big job. Frankel advises young women to look to how successful senior female managers dress and emulate that style.
When women communicate, they should stick with simple but confident sentences. The more words used, the softer the message sounds, Frankel says. Women can also practice short speeches at home to help push their main ideas to the beginning.
Maybe you think the workplace ought to be more fair. It doesn’t matter what you think. So you have to work harder to prove yourself? Do it. If you care about the job, why wouldn’t you? But I especially like the last point about looks (and language). Please, girls, do yourselves a favour and dress for the office, not the club. Showing too much skin (even when you’re really good looking) hurts your career prospects. When in doubt, cover that cleavage a bit… (hint: if we can see all the way down to your bra without effort when you bend forward a little bit, your shirt is too revealing).
The other points are worth reading, too.
Véronique adds: I especially liked 4. Don’t ever, ever cry at work. My husband ran a company with only men for about 6 years before a couple of women joined their ranks and he was floored by the hand-holding he had to do (figuratively speaking of course). Ladies, get a grip.
Andrea adds: I’ve been away, so I’m late adding this. Just wanted to say that I’ve had to “hold men’s hands” in the past too. Don’t mean to make this tit for tat, but it’s worth mentioning. Every person is different. Finally, though I have fortunately never cried at work (I have come dangerously close) I don’t think this is a cardinal sin, depending on how/why it happens. If a couple of tears fall and you ignore them and move ahead, I’d say that’s just fine. If you cry and expect people (your manager) to care, that’s a problem.by