How to get promoted as a woman
By Jan Hills in Psyche
Own your ambitions, know your potential, seek mentors, and other advice for navigating around glass ceilings and cliffs.
Need to know
For women, along with other marginalised groups, career success involves confronting serious dilemmas. Do you comply with what’s expected, or do you try to break the mould? Do you hide your ambition, or can you be honest about it? Should you be ‘yourself’, or is it better to adopt a more stereotypically ‘masculine’ style of leadership, at the cost of being disliked? Managing these tensions can leave us either frustrated in our careers, or socially penalised for our behaviour. Women in the workplace face what the feminist scholar Marilyn Frye has called ‘the double bind’, in which none of the limited options available seems to be desirable.
Much of the writing about gender in the workplace subtly – and sometimes not so subtly – blames women. It implies that women need to change in order to be successful in a (male) world. This is unjust and simplistic, and the truth is that many of us are agitating to overhaul this system. I run a consultancy that specialises in using insights from social psychology and other human sciences to assist organisations to be more inclusive, as well as to help leaders who are women achieve their potential. The practical reality is that we won’t be able to change the workplace if we don’t know how to navigate it. CLICK TO CONTINUE