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Jun 29, 2017

Is Confidence the Missing Key for Women?

By Cary Carbonaro

Carol Sankar an international business consultant spoke at a Ted-X talk and said, confidence, this is the missing link that makes women successful. She calls it the “confidence factor.” Is it the way women are raised or society that makes them less confident?

Women are as successful but are less confident than men, according to a report titled "The Status of Undergraduate Women at MIT."

Many women suffer from the imposter syndrome. Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg told us before Lean In, was published: “There are still days I wake up feeling like a fraud, not sure I should be where I am.”

This happens with my friends all the time. If they are applying for a job, they will not throw their hat in the ring if they don’t have all the qualifications. Let’s say they have 8/10. They will not apply. Men on the other hand will have 3/10 and go for it!

It starts early in school the way teachers react to the boys and girls, according to Rock the Street.

  • Ninety percent (90%) of elementary school teachers are female who have little to no certification in math. They inadvertently transfer their math anxieties to the girls in the classroom, but not the boys. "Having a highly math-anxious female teacher may push girls to confirm the stereotype that they are not as good as boys at math, which in turn, affects girls' math achievement.“
  • Adolescents are influenced by their parents’ perceptions and beliefs during high school. Students whose parents do not encourage them to take such classes will not encounter the experiences in math and science that help them develop needed levels of self-efficacy to pursue math and science careers. Students identify parents as the strongest influence on career and course decisions, particularly when choosing careers in science or engineering.
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Despite this, there is a large push to get women interested in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) fields. It starts very early. I was lucky because my dad was in banking so I learned about money very early. To me money was money, I didn’t equate it with math.

Enter the Fearless Girl

Everyone is saying she is Defiant or Fearless. But I see Equality and Strength. Do not judge a book by its cover. The girl often resembles weak or someone who needs protection. However she is standing in front of the Bull who resembles power and aggression. It is time to change the way we perceive or view symbolism just as it is time we change our view or how we perceive women in the workforce.

I think it is more along these lines. Not so much that we are in competition with men but that we changing the world or societal view of the strength and value of women and what they have to offer intellectually, economically and conceptually.

This is a big step toward confidence and change for women. What can we do for women to use and learn confidence in the workplace?

Steps for Women in the Workplace

  • Confidence is a skill that can be taught! Women must learn this
  • Find an advocate or mentor to lobby or negotiate on your behalf
  • Ask for what you want! You will never get it unless you ask!
  • Manage your own career! You career is an asset that you hold the golden keys to
  • Teach your girls to have confidence and speak up for themselves.

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