Here’s a proposition which could transform how you show up for business and life. It could make getting through the boardroom door, and being heard, a foregone conclusion.
The power it took to get us here is not the kind that will sustain us long term. Witness the anxiety, stress and even burnout many women are experiencing while in full, but disempowering, Superwoman or-her-archetype roles:
- Victim: “I’m stuck and powerless.”
- Martyr: “I’ll work through the weekend … AGAIN.”
- B**ch: “You’re all useless!$?!”
Instead, my clients draw on five women’s PowerTypes™ that give them access to a new kind of SoftPower™. It enables them to retire Superwoman for good and fuels their progress indefinitely.
Over three articles, we’re going to look at some clever, sustainable and powerful ways to embolden women who want to lead, be heard and make a difference, and who also want to feel great, be supported, and have fun.
Is that a tall order? I don’t think so. It’s the way the world needs women to be, as we face challenges far beyond getting more of us into boardrooms. But it’s a great place to start.
We all work to meet our basic needs — food, shelter, healthcare — but there has to be more to why you invest energy into the work you do every day. Because your energy is finite, it’s precious, and it has the potential to impact other lives and businesses for the better. That “why” is your purpose, your intention. Crucially, it will also motivate you through choppy waters.
Value engineering your purpose is all about maximizing the return on your energy investment in everything you do: your thinking, meeting, promoting, creating, influencing, caring and leading.
- Tip 1: Take this reflection exercise about as seriously as you would if you were running your company’s growth strategy workshop. Carve out time for it on your calendar!
- Tip 2: Women who work with me leverage every aspect of their lives by tapping into the five PowerTypes™ we all have within us. For this job, tune into the creative, intuitive, knowing energy archetype of Sorceress — from Sortiarius, “one who influences fate or fortune.” Open your mind to that part of you which truly influences your outcomes, through her connection to something bigger than herself. She’s the creative, intuitive, wisdom-seeking conduit between the seen and the unseen in your life.
- Tip 3: In that mindset, review your values — i.e., those things that are important and sit behind your “why” guiding everything you do. Ask yourself, “What’s important to me in the context of my career?” and answer with single words or short phrases. Then rank them in order of the results you’re getting right now, not the ranking you’d like them to have. This can be a lightbulb moment. Eliciting your values is a great exercise to dig into with a coach to help you uncover value conflicts, understand “away” and “towards” motivations, and diagnose uncomfortable aspects of your working life, though you can certainly make a great start on your own.
Let’s say you’ve been offered a promotion to the executive team of a successful design company. It’s a great move and aligns with one of your values, achieving financial reward, but you’ve realized that two others, sustainability and collaboration, don’t figure into the company ethos. You now see why you’ve been feeling uncomfortable about this promotion. Your new-found clarity gives you the confidence to start aligning your career path with your heart and mind, and to consider some great alternatives, for instance:
- Bring your values to the executive table and create a new unique selling point for the company, a bonus it wasn’t expecting. However, the company leaders may need convincing.
- If your gut says “no,” find a better fit. For example, a company that promotes recycling materials across its supply-chain and design process, donates 1 percent for the planet, has signed for B Corp status, and more.
- This might be the right moment to raise seed capital, create that partnership you’ve talked about, and spearhead your own unique brand.
Great, you’ve checked in with your “why” and have a plan to maximize the return on your energy investment. How are you going to get it across with confidence, conviction and persuasion? We’ll look at that in the next two articles, starting with, “Prepping the Engine Room of Your No. 1 Asset, YOU.”
If the content of this article resonates, and you would like to explore how to shift your mindset to lead, be heard and make a difference, message me for a complimentary discovery call on LinkedIn or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.