If you’ve ever felt undervalued in the workplace as a woman, you shouldn’t. Women are becoming more and more prominent in work environments and even have special skills that can help them succeed even in a male-dominated career. Recognizing the natural self empowering tools for women, that women already possess, can be very powerful.
Women have natural talents, but may feel as though those talents are not relevant to a place of business. This is incorrect. It is true that women, just like men, still need to master practical and technical business skills in order to succeed, but when it comes to climbing the corporate ladder, they have unique skills that organizations value. By simply tapping into these skills, women can empower themselves to obtain anything and everything they want.
Lets start with communication a skill that is vital to success. Women are natural communicators. Have you ever noticed how a mother just knows how important it is to talk and interact with her children, using appropriate language and phrase-structure that a child can understand. This same skill, slightly adjusted, works perfectly in a business environment. For instance, a woman who is managing other people must know how to communicate with each person individually in a manner that each person can understand.
Helen Fisher, author, The First Sex: The Natural Talents of Women and How They Are Changing the World, refers to this as a flair for language. Fisher describes the increasing need for the ability to communicate with written and spoken words. To quote her, “At talking, women have the edge.” Fisher describes how the female gender, even at very young ages “excel at… verbal fluency – rapidly finding appropriate words, phrases or sentences.” Fisher writes “Women are, on average, more articulate at saying what they say.” Women embracing this knowledge and trusting their natural language talent in communication will find their confidence building.
In terms of teaching or coaching, women also have an advantage. The nurturing characteristics that come more easily to women make it possible for women to help children learn and develop. The right combination of encouragement, discipline, freedom and boundaries will lead to a child whose confidence and abilities are very mature and continue to exceed that of other children. When this type of situation is applied to the business world, a woman can do the same thing for employees.
Once again Helen Fisher’s research as presented in The First Sex states, “Women are, on average, more interested in cooperation, harmony, and connections – a network of support.” She further writes, “Women characteristically believe everyone can succeed in business; they take a win-win attitude in the office world.”
Many women are also skilled at multi-tasking or multi-focusing. Juggling people, reports, deadlines and all the necessary resources become critical to the success of the teams’ results.
Helen Fisher references that human’s evolution, even back to ancestral times, show a woman had to rear helpless and long-dependent babies under highly dangerous conditions demonstrating the need for multitasking even then. I lover her description: “In order to rear helpless infants, ancestral mothers needed to do a lot of things at the same time. Watch for snakes. Listen for thunder. Taste for poison. Rock the sleepy. Distract the cranky. Instruct the curious. Soothe the fearful. Inspire the tardy. Feed the hungry. Mothers had to do countless daily chores while they stoked the fire, cooked the food and talked to friends.”
Of course, not all women have mothering skills and not all women are the same, but all women have the ability to identify the skills they possess and use them for personal and professional empowerment. Women can be just as effective at business leadership as men. If figuring out what makes you a successful woman interests you, why not make a list of all your personal attributes – those natural talents and empower yourself to soar to new heights of success.