Women who are running businesses should detach from feminism and embrace their femininity.
My daughter started her career in a high stress male dominated industry. We were reflecting on how a woman can succeed in this environment without becoming masculinised. Women who are running businesses should detach from feminism and embrace their femininity.
The truth is that women have been liberated. We no longer need to spend our energies proving that we’re equal. We own our own companies, we assume leadership roles and we don’t have to wear ties to work.
Here are 5 ways to create this balance while getting respect from both males and females:
- Don’t pretend that you’re one of the boys – you’re not. But at the same time don’t play the “us girls” game. Work at your individuality as a person. Use your unique leadership strengths when dealing with an issue.
- You shouldn’t dress provocatively but you also don’t need to wear a burka. You have a wonderful opportunity to express yourself and your femininity. Make sure that you are dignified and professional and let your gender work for you.
- It’s OK to talk about kids, make-up and hair but please consider your audience – these discussions may be boring to whomever is listening. Be yourself but remain sensitive to the situation.
- Respect both male and female employees. Disparaging remarks about men set a feminist tone and put a line in the sand when there may not have been an issue to begin with.
- Watch out for “womens only groups” why would you want to segregate ideas and talent. Position yourself as an entrepreneurial leader rather than a proponent of “Women rule”
You have a real advantage as a woman running a business – don’t blow it by wearing workboots and snarling at men, rather walk around in your stilettos with strength and conviction.