5 career-boosting moves women can make
Career

5 career-boosting moves women can make

As the leader of an independent search firm, I am privileged to witness, influence, and guide the remarkable achievements of women entering and excelling within leadership across diverse industries. The resilience, talent, and dedication I see daily is truly inspiring.   As we head into International Women’s Day this week, I wanted to reflect on […]

March 6th, 2024
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Abby.

Founder

A search expert making key hires for over twenty years.

As the leader of an independent search firm, I am privileged to witness, influence, and guide the remarkable achievements of women entering and excelling within leadership across diverse industries. The resilience, talent, and dedication I see daily is truly inspiring.

 

As we head into International Women’s Day this week, I wanted to reflect on the positives and the progress that has been made to reach gender equality in the workplace, as although there is still further to go, positive change is happening all around us, and it is something to embrace:

 

  • The UK’s median gender pay gap in 2023 was down 0.1% from the previous year, according to the ONS
  • The proportion of board positions held by women in the FTSE 350 peaked at 42% last year, up from 24.5% in 2017 (when the report by the FTSE Women Leaders Review was first launched)
  • At every stage of the pipeline, women are keen to advance in their careers and are more ambitious than before the pandemic.
  • Flexibility is enabling women to pursue these ambitions, with one in five saying that it has helped them stay in their positions or avoid having to reduce their hours.
  • More than ever, women are looking to thrive in both their careers and lives without one coming at the expense of the other.

 

This is proof of the collective strength of women. In order to see this progress, we must work together to drive success. Each year, we are taking steps towards equality for those behind, alongside, and in front of us, and I couldn’t be prouder of this movement.

 

On this journey, it’s important to celebrate these steps in the right direction while also considering how we can take responsibility for the part we play in empowering women to achieve their goals with support and confidence.

 

Taking my role seriously as a trusted search expert, the women I work with often confide in me that some of the biggest reasons for not pushing for more in their careers is not down to a lack of experience or enthusiasm for their work, but from low levels of confidence to break the ceiling or the power to negotiate for conditions that will enable them to do their best work whilst fitting around family.

 

Essentially, society is telling us that we may as well give up because we don’t tick all of the boxes, and I would like to see that stance called out every time and banished because it is not progressive language.

 

I grew up in the girl power era; we were told that you might not have all the answers, but if you went for it with everything you had, you would most probably win it. Let’s see a bit of that flowing through the press and into all women.

 

 

My top 5 things women can do to further their careers

 

1) Find a mentor or be a mentor, you choose

Whether you’re finding a mentor or becoming one, it can be a game-changer for your career. Having a mentor means having a trusted guide who’s been there, done that, and can show you the ropes. They’ll give you advice, introduce you to the right people, and help you grow. I have found that having someone in your corner can make all the difference.

 

On the flip side, being a mentor lets you share your expertise, hone your leadership skills, and make a real difference in someone else’s career.

 

 

2) Build your community, network, gang, and the women who back you no matter what

Surround yourself with a supportive network of like-minded women. These will be the people who will celebrate your successes with you, lift you up, and provide honest feedback when you need it most.

 

Building your tribe takes time and effort, but your people are out there, and the connections you make can last a lifetime. Attend events, join professional organisations, and don’t be afraid to reach out to people you admire. You never know where your next connection might come from.

 

 

3) Use social media as a backup way to communicate, being in person makes you feel much more powerful

While social media is a powerful tool for communicating and building your personal brand, there’s no substitute for being in person. Meeting someone face-to-face allows you to connect on a deeper level, build trust more quickly, and leave a lasting impression. So, whenever possible, go grab that coffee, attend that event, or join that local meetup group.

 

 

4) Eat well and exercise; your energy levels will run higher, and you will feel happier

Taking care of your mind and body is the key to feeling and performing at your best. Don’t be afraid to make self-care a priority and set boundaries to protect your time and energy. Remember, you can’t pour from an empty cup, so take care of yourself first.

 

 

5) Take time for yourself and be alone with your thoughts

In the hustle and bustle of everyday life, it is easy to get caught up in the daily grind and lose sight of your long-term goals. Take time regularly to step back, reflect on your progress, and envision your future.

 

Think about your life plan: What does ten years from now look like? 20 years? Figure out what you need to do now to reach your goals. This has to come from you.

 

And remember, it’s important to celebrate your successes along the way. You’ve worked hard to get to this moment, so be proud of how far you’ve come and excited about where you’re going.

 

 

So, as another International Women’s Day takes shape, focus on positive vibes only, ladies. We know it’s tough out there, but if our glasses are half full and we are grateful for the small things, get in person with people who make us feel good, and back our fellow women, the big things will come by the truck full, I promise.

 

 


 

 

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Yellow Bricks is a female-owned and led executive search firm hiring predominately for software companies with diversity and inclusion at the heart of our offering. To learn more, click here.
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