Sally Helgesen’s work on women’s leadership has brought awareness to the tendencies we all repeat. From studying women leaders in large firms, she discovered women leaders were reluctant to claim their achievements.
While men do not have issues to let others know what they have contributed to, us women tend to shy away from shining light on our work. For the most part, we fall into habits of recognizing others, unaware of the impact of these behaviors in our lives and careers. The tendency is to ‘dilute’ our contributions by giving a lot of credit to others and none to ourselves. It sounds more like: “I couldn’t have done it without my colleague/assistant/boss or team”, rather than saying: “Thank you for noticing. I worked hard on this”.
Self-promotion is an art you can learn. In the last years there have been an increased attention to the topic of personal branding. Personal branding suggest that we can apply brand marketing principles to ourselves. I am sharing with you 3 tips to effectively promoting your personal brand:
Believe in What You Have to Offer
This is the first step so others can value your offering. People buy from you because they like and trust you. If you don’t believe in what you have to offer, what others would? Make a list of your strengths, develop clarity on what are the solutions that you provide and the value added that you offer. Believe in your skills so you can position yourself as a confident woman, a difference maker, a leader.
Marketing Yourself Effectively Is Part of Your Job
You’re your own brand. Strong brands know their attributes and know how to present them in an impactful way. You’re your primary product. What you say and how you say it, your external appearance, your posture and nonverbal, the entire package speaks about how you show up. Become aware of the words you use to describe what you do and the value that you bring. Make your achievements visible, especially to those influential stakeholders.
Even search firms corroborate that women are less confident than men when it comes to asserting their strengths and value in job interview situations. Being assertive means using clear and direct words to describe your strengths. Share about your achievements in a concise way, speak with surety and clarity. Let others know that you have exactly the skills they’re looking for and you can easily meet their needs and requirements when that is the case. Share specific examples and assert yourself in situations where you can become exposed to decision makers.
You might be thinking it sounds easier in print than in action. Changing habits require commitment, determination and discipline. If you’re determined to implement these 3 tips, don’t do it alone. Ask for help. Professional coaches like me, are trained to help you implement positive changes. If you can’t hire a coach at the moment, enlist a trusted advisor in helping you to practice new behaviors. Choose someone that you trust and ask for their support in observing you applying the new behaviors.
If you are ready to rise, you must be willing to claim your achievements. Effectively marketing yourself it is not about bragging or being self-centered. It is about reaching your potential, it is about being a difference maker.