If you’re a woman entering the business world, you may feel a bit wary of what you’re going to face. Business is primarily a male-dominated field, so it can be daunting to a woman who’s trying to start in it. Maybe you want to run your own business one day or maybe you’re happy working for someone else. Regardless, keep these tips in mind as you start your career and work toward your dreams in business.
Learn as much as you can
The best step you can take for yourself in business is learning as much as you can. Never stop increasing your knowledge! After you get your job, keep learning. Whether that means you take official classes and work toward an MBA or some other degree or certification or if you just read books related to your industry and attend seminars, you’ll learn something. The more you learn, the more valuable you are to your company.
Do not psych yourself out
Yes, it can be extremely difficult to be a woman in an industry run by men, however, do not discourage yourself before you’ve even begun. There are plenty of women who’ve led successful business careers and there are lots of people who are more interested in your talent than the fact you’re a woman, so encourage yourself as you work toward your dreams.
People are drawn to those who display confidence. Learn to convey a confident exterior, even if you’re nervous. When giving a presentation, rehearse it plenty of times beforehand and make notes for yourself. Practice your skills for your job so you know you can do everything correctly and are good at it; this instills a sense of confidence in you.
Find quality mentors
One of the most important steps you can take to help yourself advance in the business world is finding quality mentors. There are plenty of people out there who are willing to mentor you, so take advantage of that. Do not be afraid to strike up conversations and ask professionals you admire if they’d be willing to be your mentor. A mentor can give you quality advice on your professional journey and guide your decisions on how best to achieve your goals.
Make yourself speak up
Speak up about lots of things; talk about the stuff you’ve learned and your skills, share your ideas with your manager and make suggestions, and speak up if you feel you’re being overlooked or are uncomfortable with something. Being able to talk and share your ideas at work is a testament to your confidence and knowledge and it convinces people you know what you’re doing.
Take things less seriously
The business world is fast-paced and you’ll experience people who are rude and try to put you down in order to get ahead. Learn to not take personal slights seriously and let them get to you. Develop a thick skin and stay true to yourself, but remember to be smart in what you say and do in your career. Avoid doing or saying anything that could make you look bad or harm your job.