Advancing Your Career Despite the Glass Ceiling | The Realistic Optimist

Advancing Your Career Despite the Glass Ceiling

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Advancing Your Career Despite the Glass Ceiling


The glass ceiling, the wage gap, and sexism continue to be obstacles to women’s success in their careers. However, women have secret weapons to combat these obstacles. With education, planning ahead, networking, and self-promotion, you can have a more successful career as a woman.

Education and Skills

Get as much education and training as you can. According to Quintessential, “Education is by far women’s most powerful secret weapon.” In 1975, men were awarded the majority of college degrees. This was true for all levels of degrees. By 2000, women were awarded the majority of the associate bachelor’s and master’s degrees, and within a decade a majority of the first professional and doctorate degree levels will also be awarded to more women than men.

The world is increasingly demanding that jobseekers have education and training provided by colleges and universities. As such, becoming well educated is imperative. Get the highest degree you can manage.

Also, consider informal ways of education, such as professional organizations, conferences, and trade publications. See if your job offers training programs or professional development opportunities. Technology is intertwined into our jobs; therefore, women need to stay on the cutting edge by taking advantage of online learning opportunities, such as HTML script and SEO classes.

Many women have naturally strong communication and interpersonal skills – use them. Women’s way of communicating is not necessarily better than men’s way, but it may be better suited to newer styles of management. Skills labeled as “feminine,” such as relationship building, are becoming increasingly important as team-based work and customer contact increases.

Networking and Planning Ahead

Although women seem like natural talkers who excel at networking, men typically use networking more effectively than women. Networking is a crucial part of growing your career, so brush up on your networking skills.

A large factor on career success is whether or not you make others be aware of who you are, what you have to offer, and how you can make a difference in their organization. Although many women are uncomfortable with self-promotion because it goes against this idea that a woman is supposed to put other’s needs ahead of her own, you can’t depend on others to brag about you. Promote yourself!

While career planning is important for men and women, it’s especially crucial for women because they generally have more “twists and turns to negotiate along the road to career success,” such as maternity leave. You should plan where you’d like your career to be in 5, 10, and 15 years from now, but be flexible to allow for changing circumstances.

Equally important is finding a mentor. Many successful women credit their position to some kind of mentoring.

Why Loving Your Job is Important

If you hate your job, it’s doing more harm than just ruin your morning. If you lack an emotional bond with your company and your commitment is based on obligation, the loss of autonomy eventually becomes emotionally draining to the point where you develop physical and mental health issues. These side effects harm your mental and emotional well-being, as well as your physical health.

You want to be happy in your field, as it’s something you’re going spend a huge chunk of your life. In order to be happy, you have to have a trajectory for your career. Don’t become stagnant or bored. Be active in growing and advancing your career. Your success and happiness depend on it.

Author: Gloria Martinez

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