Why on earth is it so hard for so many women to speak positively about themselves and their accomplishments? How many times have women told me things like: “Oh, that? It’s nothing special.” “It makes me uncomfortable to talk about myself and my successes, I don’t like to brag.” “I shouldn’t have to tell others (boss, colleagues, clients…) about what I’ve accomplished, the results should speak for themselves.” Or worse yet, and I heard this one again just the other day: “I can’t think of anything I’m particularly good at.”
Well, whatever the reason for this self-imposed modesty, this humble nature, it’s important to get beyond it. Self-promotion – within reason, of course – is a prerequisite not only to advancing professionally, but also to reinforcing your self-esteem.
If you cringe at the thought of having to market yourself, even minimally through a simple conversation, I’d like to recommend an effective book by author Peggy Klaus: “Brag! The Art of Tooting Your Own Horn without Blowing It”(Warner Business Books). It’s based on the premise that “In today’s cutthroat business world… bragging is a necessity – not a choice! Remaining quiet about your successes only leads to being underappreciated and overlooked.”
For women who prefer learning through “live” practicing, see the News & Events section for a couple of upcoming courses on this subject, one in English and one in Italian.
It’s time to start speaking up about yourself. If you don’t, who will?