From Lissa Rankin, OB/GYN and founder of Owning Pink, came up with this list because she, “discovered that I do know a few things about being a woman in business and balancing the feminine energy that flows through me with the masculine energy I had to hone in order to succeed in my line of work.”
Italics are mine. Slightly edited.
Tips for being Feminine in the workplace
- Ask for and receive what you need, rather than pushing for it. The traditional masculine approach to business is to cram something down the throats of employees and clients. I’ve learned that invitations work better. If you want a memo to get written well, explain to your employee what you need and invite her to bring her whole self to the memo. She is much more likely to deliver a quality product than if you badger, belittle, and order her to get the job done.
- Empower others to be the most they can be. Demonstrate to those who work with you that you believe in their skills, that you trust them (even if you’re not sure you do), and that you expect great things of them. 99% of the time, they will lift themselves up to the level you expect – when your expectations are delivered with heart.
- Lead by example. If you want to be allowed to bring more of your womanly self to the board room, do it. Skip the business suits if they don’t make you feel feminine. Cry if you feel moved. Remember that a man can only access his inner hero through the vessel of womanhood. Employ your feminine wiles to bring out the best in the men you work with – not in a manipulative, self-serving way, but because you genuinely care about the work you’re doing and want to bring out the best in everyone you work with.
- Release concerns about what people think. If you’re good at what you do, don’t worry about what everyone else thinks of you.
- Be authentic to who you are. If your job is requiring you to sacrifice your own integrity, you’re in the wrong job. Figure out how you can stand up for what you believe and bring your whole self to the workplace – or get out. Life’s too short not to be who you really are.
- Employ love at work. See past the masks people wear… Even the most difficult colleagues, employees, and bosses have (something to love) somewhere within them. If they feel SEEN and loved, you will be respected, appreciated, valued, and promoted. It’s a myth to think that you have to be hard edged to get ahead in business. Softness works miracles in the workplace, when you employ it skillfully.
- Follow your intuition. When we work, it’s so easy to get caught in our heads that we forget to listen to our gut feelings. If something makes you feel icky at work, pay attention. That’s your intuition speaking, and you’re making a big mistake if you don’t listen to it.
- Tell the truth. Lying to your boss because you think you’re expected to doesn’t serve anyone. If you hate the proposal he just suggested, tell him in a kind and gentle way that you don’t like it. As an employer, I can tell you that it’s easy to find yes-men, but it’s much harder to find an employee you can trust to give you an honest opinion. Telling the truth in a kind, nonjudgmental fashion will make you valuable to your company.
- Go with the flow. Don’t resist the direction you find yourself wandering in your business life. Set goals but release attachment to outcomes. Pray for guidance. Listen for answers. Watch for signs.