This article is based on the following book: Nice Girls Dont Get the Corner Office 101 Unconscious Mistakes Women Make That Sabotage Their Careers By Lois P. Frankel, PhD Warner Books Inc., 2003 ISBN 0446531324 288 pages
Dr. Frankel clearly identifies the common mistakes 101 in allthat women commit unconsciously to sabotage their careers. This book provides revolutionary guides to help the women of today eliminate the girl-like behaviors they became accustomed with, which hold them back professionally.
How You Play the Game Unfortunately, women are not as trained to participate in competitive sports. It is only recently that women started making their marks in this field. Thus, most women do not know the rules of the game of business. They simply do not know how to play itand more importantly, how to win it.
Some of the common mistakes women commit as they play the game of business are: pretending it isn't a game; playing the game safely and within bounds; working hard; doing the what you want; avoiding office politics; being the conscience; protecting jerks; holding your tongue; failing to capitalize on relationships; and, not understanding the needs of your constituents.
How You Act Being successful in the world of business is not only dependent on your knowledge of how to play it. It is also important to know how to act, professionally. Dr. Frankel enumerates some unlikely behaviors in the workplace that can be hard career busters.
These are: polling before making a decision; needing to be liked; not needing to be liked; not asking questions for fear of sounding stupid; acting like a man; telling the whole truth and nothing but the truth (so help you God); sharing too much personal information; being overly concerned with offending others; denying the importance of money; flirting; acquiescing to bullies; decorating your office like your living room; feeding others; offering a limp handshake; being financially insecure; and, helping.
How You Think Changing the way you think can greatly impact a change in your career. Note the beliefs and thought patterns you learn early in girlhood that you need to reconsider and then eventually forget.
Some of these are: making miracles; taking full responsibility; obediently following instructions; viewing men in authority as father figures; limiting your possibilities; ignoring the quid pro quo (something thats exchanged in return for something else); skipping meetings; putting work ahead of your personal life; letting people waste your time; prematurely abandoning your career goals; ignoring the importance of network relationships; refusing perks; making up negative stories; and, striving for perfection.
How You Brand and Market Yourself
Marketing oneself is as important as marketing a specific brand. Think of yourself as a brand thats needs to be marketed effectively. Alongside these come some important points that women need to particularly remember.
The following are some mistakes to avoid in marketing yourself: falling to define your brand; minimizing your work or position; using only your nickname or first name; waiting to be noticed; refusing high-profile assignments; being modest; staying in you safety zone; giving away your ideas; working in stereotypical roles or departments; ignoring feedback; and, being invisible;
How You Sound
Put special attention to your choice words, tone of voice, speed of speech and thought organization process. These usually matter more than the content of your speech. An articulately delivered speech will help you be branded as knowledgeable, confident and competent. Remember, how you sound comprises 90% of your credibility.
Take note of these common mistakes: couching statements as questions; using preambles; explaining; asking permission; apologizing; using minimizing words; using qualifiers; not answering the question; talking too fast; the inability to speak the language of your business; using nonwords; using touchy-feely language; sandwich-effect; speaking softly; speaking at a higher-than-natural pitch; trailing voice mails; failing to pause or reflect before responding.
How You Look
There is this common notion that the best and the brightest are rewarded with promotions and choice assignments. This is entirely wrong. Those who are competent enough, sound and look good are the ones who move forward in their careers. Statistically, research shows that 55% of your credibility comes from how you look; 38% from how you sound; and, only 7% from what you actually say.
Carry yourself properly by avoiding these mistakes: smiling inappropriately; taking up too little space; using gestures inconsistent with your message; being over- or underanimated; tilting your head; wearing inappropriate makeup; wearing the wrong hairstyle; dressing inappropriately; sitting on your foot; grooming in public; sitting in meetings with your hands under the table; wearing your reading glasses around your neck; accessorizing too much; and, failing to maintain eye contact;
How You Respond It is important to know how to respond to the ways others treat you. And some of the common pitfalls women do as a response to a certain gesture are as follows:
Internalizing messages; believing others know more than you; taking notes, getting coffee, and making copies; tolerating inappropriate behavior; exhibiting too much patience; accepting dead-end assignments; putting the needs of others before your own; denying your power; allowing yourself to be the scapegoat; accepting fait accompli (irreversible or predetermined decisions); permitting others' mistakes to inconvenience you; being the last to speak; playing the gender card; tolerating sexual harassment; and, crying.
By: Regine P. Azurin and Yvette Pantilla Regine Azurin is the President of BusinessSummaries.com, a company that provides business book summaries of the latest bestsellers for busy executives and entrepreneurs.
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