THE CONFIDENCE GAP – If you’re an ambitious woman then you’ve likely noticed how your self-assuredness may not live-up to those of your male colleagues or counterparts. In this blog I will share the present facts on the confidence gap between men and women in the workplace and explain why this is important for women like you and your career and how you can make the changes for a better path.
“So, what are the facts Louise?”
It’s not entirely concrete yet, and some studies point out flaws in the present body of research, but the gist of what we DO know is that on average, women seem less self-assured than men. This is not to say men are immune to the same self-sabotaging barriers of doubt as women – no not at all! But what research does show as in an internal study by Hewlett-Packard is that men are more likely to apply for jobs, promotions or challenges even if underqualified. On the contrary, women tended to apply only if they neared or exceeded 100% of those same qualifications. So, why do we do this to ourselves?
This internal battle with confidence has another name, imposter syndrome. In this context it’s where women (even those of great success) feel that they are undeserving and an imposter in their field to be exposed at a moment’s notice! Scary stuff, huh? To further subject us to our own worries, women tend to worry more and to a greater degree about things such as being negatively perceived by others or seen as rude, stepping on the toes of others or stealing the spotlight, or of course physical appearance! So, is it all bad?
No, in fact it’s been proven that our confidence increases with experience. But think of all the potential opportunities you didn’t seize because you were missing just the confidence to chase them! Don’t get me wrong, you need to be good at what you do, but combining proficiency with the ability to express your ideas, lead and communicate effectively – that’s the path to higher success! So, what can you do?
What I believe, is that the best way to improve your self-assuredness at work is to master the skills of communication and your voice. If you can learn and practise your way to communicating your messages and ideas with confidence, then when opportunities come your way you will be best prepared to seize them! I can help with this through my several coaching courses I offer and the content I post on social media. Just follow me on Facebook, LinkedIn or Instagram.
Undeniably, self-confidence plays a significant role in your and my career success. Whether communicating to a crowd, setting goals or negotiating with your boss. Hopefully this short dive has illuminated your view and inspired you to take action upon, where you might find your own lack of self-assuredness letting you down in your career.