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How Women Can Earn the Respect They Deserve in the Workplace

By Admin | 14 November 2017 |

It can be a challenge for women to get the respect they deserve in the workplace. Very often, talented women are overlooked when it comes to promotions, sitting on the board, or being managers. Even though the corporate landscape has changed in recent years, it is still difficult for many women to receive earned respect in many male-dominated industries.

If you are a business woman who wants to get ahead in the workplace and climb the industry ladder, how can you seek respect among your male colleagues?

Here are 4 ways that any educated, talented woman can earn respect as a valuable contributor in their workplace.

1. Be an Industry Expert

One of the best ways to earn respect in male-dominated industries is to be an expert in your field.

There are many ways you can increase your expertise in your industry. Listen to podcasts, attend seminars where authority figures give lectures, join relevant groups on LinkedIn or other social media platforms, and stay up-to-date on industry trends.

This has a two-fold effect in helping you to earn the respect that you deserve:

  • First, it instils confidence in you and you will feel in a better position to contribute to your team.
  • Second, others will recognise your knowledge of the latest industry trends.

You could also boost your authority even more by contributing articles or writing a post on your LinkedIn profile. This will instantly earn you respect from others in your industry – both inside the workplace and in your social media network.

2. Communicate well

Proper communication is important for anyone in the workplace, but it is even more important for women who want to earn respect.

Your qualifications and technical skills may have got you the job in the first place. However, to move up the corporate ladder, it’s important to fine-tune your communication skills to get respect. For example, stay away from words like “I think” or “just.” These words will only undermine your authority and give others the impression that you are unsure of yourself.

How can you improve communication skills to get ahead in boardroom meetings or communicating with your team? Here are a few pointers:

  • Listen attentively to others when they are speaking
  • Keep written communication formal and polite, keeping in mind how the other person could react
  • Always double check written communication for errors
  • Keep your body language open by looking at the other person when they are speaking and not folding your arms
  • Treat everyone equally
  • Keep a positive smile, even when speaking on the phone

3. Dress to impress

A smart appearance goes a long way in the workplace for both men and women. So, you need to dress to impress to earn respect.

However, dressing to impress doesn’t mean dressing a provocative or sensual manner. Dressing for work with low-cut tops and short skirts may give the wrong impression of you and result in others not taking your skills and talents seriously. So, it’s usually better to err on the side of caution and dress a little more conservatively for work.

4. Have a support network

You must have a support network to get ahead in the workplace and earn the respect you deserve.

For most corporate women, balancing careers and family life can be one of the biggest challenges. It is still a fact that most of the responsibilities for household tasks and child care are shouldered by women. Therefore, to limit the impact that family life has on your position in the workplace, it’s important to have a good support network.

A support network will help prevent burnout if you try and do it all. Therefore, you could employ someone to take care of domestic duties, use childcare services, and share responsibilities with your partner.

This will give your time to be with your family and also help you earn the respect in the workplace that you deserve.