How confident are you returning to work?
I read an article in Forbes that over 75% of women feel they aren’t confident in their work relationships and they feel they also lack access to growth and development opportunities. Worrying considering women make up nearly 50% of the workforce.
Whilst mulling over this, I looked at my own career experiences. I wanted it all, and why not, but I still had to juggle the child-care, demanding work environments and meetings whilst navigating the tricky world of business and sometimes challenging characters. There were so many times I self-doubted, I doubted my abilities (imposter syndrome alert) my next career move, how I came across, and I did constantly self-compare myself not only with other women but men. Apparently, we call it status anxiety.
A lot of this self-doubt and confidence issues do stem from the environments we work in, the lack of time to do it all, but they also stem from lack of awareness in how to navigate the politics of the workplace, how to communicate effectively, and knowing how to highlight your value-add. Doing this in the new hybrid and remote environment is even more challenging, as it impacts visibility which we know can hinder progress.
Obviously, organisations have a lot more to do to nurture, foster, support and retain women who are currently in the workforce.
However, is enough being done to help those women who are now looking to return to the workplace after a career break. Those women who feel uneasy in what new approaches, changes, technological advances they will encounter and how their skills will compare.
We need to help those women who have not had an interview for a while, need to get a bit more savvy in new social media techniques in looking for jobs, and focusing in on what they still have to offer and those relevant skills and strengths despite a justifiable career break.
Returning to work is scary, its being prepared to do it that is important!