3 Powerful Ways to Portray Confidence and SuccessWritten by Emily Clark
A good number of women who are attacked are chosen because of way they presented themselves. Something about their posture told assailant, “here is a weak woman, I can take her”. If you are scared out of your gourd, it will show.
Low self esteem or fearfulness looks like slouched shoulders; head down, arms folded in front or in pockets. Confidence looks like walking tall, shoulders back, head up, eye to eye contact, arms at side. One statistic revealed that those trained in martial arts are less likely to ever be attacked because of way they carry themselves. They’ve been trained to defend themselves and to not take a weak position. They have confidence.
Try this experiment. The next time you’re in a public place, mall, grocery store, beach, no matter, walk past all people and look them directly in eye. You might want to smile a little or offer a “how ya doin’?” so they don’t think you’re stalking them. You’ll be amazed at number of people who will not look at you. They’ll look down or away but not at you. Of course, in some cultures it’s not proper to look people in eye. Be sensitive to that. But in many circles you will find it hard to find 10 people who will look at you.
By you looking at them, in some subconscious way you’re communicating that you are not afraid. You’re not sending nonverbal clues that you lack confidence. To get into practice of always looking people in eye, take it one step further and see what color eyes they have. It only takes a quick glance, you’re not starring down people but if you make an effort to determine eye color, you can be confident that you’re properly looking people head on in eyes.
Reflections in the Glass CeilingWritten by John M McKee
The recent news about one of America's most powerful woman ceo's being removed from office has raised discussion about gender bias, again. It disappoints me that in 2005, I still hear women clients talking about "the old boys' network". They say "glass ceilings" are holding them back in terms of advancement, pay equity, recognition and career satisfaction. While I have no doubt their assessments are valid; it's important that we don't generalize too much. There are other reasons as well. First, discretion is no longer best part of valor. While Shakespearean wenches were prized for their discretion, professional women in today's competitive workplace are often held back by very quality that is too often expected of women. So let me be clear on this: Women - working quietly and selflessly will not get you to that corner office! In my line of work, I still hear business professionals blaming 'glass ceiling' for women's scarce presence in executive suite. Research (and my own experience) shows that while glass ceiling isn't completely cracked, it is not main obstacle for women's advancement to upper echelons of corporate America. The good old boy network (active as it is) is no longer what provides men biggest advantage in workplace. Men's advantage comes from their willingness to speak about their accomplishments, having learned from an early age how rewarding it is to talk about winning and being first--in a ball game, in a race, in class rankings. As boys become men and enter workplace, they have found that in most cases it is still worthwhile and good business to push their cause--to their boss and their co-workers and their clients, too. Contrast that attitude and behavior to that of women, whose early years are marked by societal encouragement and positive reinforcement for being amenable and social and not aggressive or assertive. Today's companies are filled with many women who grew up getting positive strokes for being discreet, sociable, attractive, quiet, and not competing with boys in boys' games. These women entered workforce with no developed skills for self-promotion - and perhaps even a conditioned aversion to such indiscreet (and unseeming) activity. Over 25 years I was a senior executive working in boardrooms across US and Canada I repeatedly saw bright and talented women exhibit this conditioned aversion to applauding one's accomplishments and embracing self-promotion. That type of behavior holds women back from advancement, pay equity, recognition from boss, and career satisfaction. And while I would like to be only person with this opinion - I am not. There is recent research backing up this observation.
I recently reviewed an article written by William Ryberg for Des Moines Register. Ryberg's article focused on results of a study conducted by Nexus Executive Women's Alliance of 1200 businesswomen in Australia in 2002. In it, women were asked for their views and opinions about principal barriers to their own advancement and