Women face both similar and different challenges in the workplace. For that reason, there are some special tips that women should embrace to increase the odds of success. While working women have made great progress in the past three decades landing a higher percentage of highly-coveted management jobs, there are still obstacles on the way to the top. For success, women must approach the workplace in a very calculated manner. Below are some tips for every ambitious female aspiring to greatness.
1. Find a successful mentor who can help you navigate the corporate landscape. Older women who paved the way for the next generation can provide invaluable insights for female professionals who are still learning how to move ahead in the workplace. Some companies have formal mentoring programs, but many do not. Finding a mentor does not have to be a company sanctioned, formal process. Reaching out to a helpful, older female for advice is usually enough to establish the mentor relationship. Women who have “made it” in the corporate world are often eager to share tips with younger women.
2. Dress for success so that business associates will take you seriously. Wearing power colors is key for being noticed. The best suit colors for women are royal blue, emerald green, red and magenta. Buying a style that flatters your body shape always makes fashion sense for the workplace. Stay away from suit jackets that look like your father’s. This masculine cut will make you appear frumpy and out of touch. Never wear revealing clothes to work. Jewelry should be tasteful and used as bold accents. Shoes should not be noticeable. Wearing a bit of makeup to enhance your eyes and skin tone is a good idea. Finally, it is important that your hairstyle be fresh and up to date without being too extreme and funky. All of these factors create your image.
3. Take care of yourself and unwind in the evenings and on the weekends. Being well rested and rejuvenated for work will provide the energy you need to excel and compete. Workaholics typically burn out early in the race, losing their perspective and ability to compete.
4. Define success in your own terms, setting definite career goals for yourself. If you don’t approach your career with a gameplan, it is impossible to know how to navigate. As obvious as this sounds, you must know where you want to go in order to get there.
5. Assess your strengths and weaknesses as honestly as possible. Don’t just focus on your liabilities. Be honest about your assets too, as they will be your guide to the career that best suits your personality and strengths.