career advice

Seven Incredibly Expensive Self Promotion Excuses Typical for Executive Women

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You are the story teller of your own life, and you can create your own legend, or not
— Isabel Allende

If you do a Google search for how to self promote without sounding like you're bragging you'll get 2.5 MI+L hits. It's a big concern for both men and women with societal and cultural norms and biases forming part of this minefield.

It can be even tougher for women when it comes to self promotion, as you know. We're damned when we do, yet doomed when we don't. We want a career that really counts. We want to feel as though we are seen, heard AND valued, but it can sometimes feel like balancing on a knife edge. 

Sometimes we even wonder why we bother.

Yet when we don't self promote we miss out on plum assignments, juicy salary increases or bonuses in line with our male peers and equally importantly, we miss out on being perceived as a serious C-suite contender.   

Remember, our society confuses confidence with competence, and self promotion with confidence will help you not only get ahead, but be perceived as better at your role as well.

Over the years I’ve heard lots of reasons why people don’t self promote and I believe the following seven excuses will cost you  $10's of $1000's in salary over the course of your career.

  1. I just need to do great work - Remember the famous “build it and they will come” line from Kevin Costner's Field of Dreams?  He had built a baseball stadium and people magically turned up from all over to attend simply because he built it. In a highly competitive job market, where we confuse confidence with competence, you simply cannot afford to assume that people will see the value or commercial application of your experience or expertise. Additionally, algorithms, short attention spans and rapidly changing technologies rule the world. It’s really hard to sell a secret, so you'll need to do far more than create a program, post something on LinkedIn, or just do great work. You also need to sell the value of the great work you do - ergo you need to self promote.

  2. My results should speak for themselves - this is the most common expression I hear from busy executives who are beginning their self promotion journey.  Nearly everyone has this inner mental script. "It's not fair. I shouldn't have to tell my boss about how well I did. They should see for themselves, because it's their job to manage me."  Success will belong to those who can speak to their own results without sounding like they're bragging. In fact, success comes more easily to those who even do sound they’re bragging, than those who don’ t speak up at all. Start practicing now.

  3. When I land a new role, I don’t need to self promote any more - another really common misconception.  The most ambitious and successful women I work with know this. They keep self promoting even when they start a new role.  In fact, even more so. They stay visible both inside and outside the business, but they change the balance towards heavier internal self promotion to help them fast track their success in the first 6 months, and lighter external self promotion to ensure people outside the organisation remember who they are.  There is nothing worse than being buried in everything new with no room to do much more than survive, only to emerge after your first 6 months and find out that people have forgotten you exist.  People are fickle, attention spans are short, and there is always someone hungrier. Stay visible people. Stay visible. 

  4. I don’t really need the credit or recognition - another really common excuse, particularly after someone has missed out on a payrise, promotion or recognition. Yes you do, because that's the currency of the organisation you work in. If you don't value yourself enough to claim credit, others won't either, and someone else may just take credit on your behalf. It’s a sign of healthy self respect to claim credit where credit is due. If you don’t respect yourself, others will also take you for granted. Once again, start practicing now.

  5. I have to do this on my own - peer promotion is a great addition to your self promotion toolkit. And it really works for women because it doesn’t trigger reactions about socialised stereotype biases. It's GREAT to have others on your side who can fly the flag for brand you, reinforce your opinion or even remind others how great you are. It’s far easier for me to say out loud that “Michelle is a Rockstar”. It’s far harder for me to say that about myself. So build out a team of peers or others who are also interested in career advancement but not competing with you. Then help them to help you by providing them with evidence of your results and examples of what you do. Ask for references on LinkedIn, ask for positive feedback about your leadership brand. Your peers or others may just help you achieve Rockstar status without you having to sweat it out.

  6. I've got great sponsors/mentors/champions so I'll be okay - I’ve written about this before and I can’t write about it enough because I see so many women who’ve hit a certain spot in their career, who have never had to self promote previously, and all of a sudden they don’t know how and it feels incredibly hard. Sponsors mentors and champions are great. Do what ever you can do ensure you have the backing of great sponsors, mentors and champions in addition to peers who support. But these people may resign, retire or are made redundant and then you are left hanging out to dry with no self promotion muscle, because you've never had to do it for yourself before.  You do need to develop your own skills (in addition to having great sponsors mentors and champions) so you can carve out your own career path. As leadership expert, Avril Henry wisely says

    "No-one is as interested in your career as you are. So do something about it!”

  7. We imagine it’s “all about me “ - in fact, the most subtly powerful self promotion is very rarely all about me. Remember the line from ABC’s Kath and Kim - "Look at moi, look at moi, look at moi"?   Unskillful self promoters, who we all try and avoid, make it all about them. Boring. And quite challenging. When we make it about the self, it’s far more likely you’ll become self conscious or worried you’ll appear self absorbed or self centred. Instead when you take the self out of self promotion and make it all about the problems you solve, the difference you make and the value you add, you'll do far better. Take it one step further and make sure that this is in service to others, and you'll be self promoting like a Rockstar within no time.

These excuses are really common. I should know. Because I say them to myself as well. And the best fix is to stay curious, keep learning and keep on self promoting until you get much better. Self promotion Rockstar status is not that far away!

Keep me posted. Let me know how you go. Drop me an email or a message via LinkedIn and share your best tactics

Need help? Curious - check out the events page for an intro session or book in for a 30 min intro call to learn more

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Feel like your leadership journey has stalled? Email ablesing@amandablesing.com to set up a 30 min one on one to learn more. Helping clients shift from feeling invisible to becoming invincible in just 12 months

Have You Got the Courage to Step Into the Limelight?

Many of the executive women I work with are truly courageous as they start putting themselves out there to be judged, leading more fully, and doing so anyway without waiting to be invited.

The last 12 months has seen so many of my clients ditching their old "wallflower" brand to

  • become finalists or win awards

  • land board positions

  • tackle conference speaking gigs

  • get published in international publications

  • receive substantive increases in salary

  • win big, exciting new roles, and

  • feeling as though they are truly world class.

Kudos.

It takes confidence, courage and vision to lead more visibly. Delighted I can be part of their journey. From invisible to invincible and beyond!

What would it take to help you to step into the limelight and gain the recognition you truly deserve?

From Invisible to invincible - and beyond!

#visibility #selfpromotionmatters #womenofimpact

 
Feel like your leadership journey has stalled? Email ablesing@amandablesing.com to set up a 30 min one on one to learn more. Helping clients shift from feeling invisible to becoming invincible in just 12 months

The day my first book was published

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Two years ago, in March, my first book was published!

I remember how excited I was and overwhelmed with how close it was to International Women's Day #IWD

Since then I've sold almost 1000 copies and still love getting notes from readers telling me how much they enjoyed it.

"Hey Amanda, I couldn't wait to tell you how great your book it is! I couldn't put it down all weekend and I want to buy a copy for all my girlfriends" said one happy reader 😎

With #IWD2019 just past, why not buy a copy to inspire a smart ’n savvy career minded woman in your life?

Step Up, Speak Out, Take Charge - A woman's guide to getting ahead in your career

Available to purchase from Amazon, Koby, Booktopia, Dymocks and even Walmart!

And keep your eye out for book #2 - From Invisible to Invincible - a self promotion handbook for executive women

Available from May 2019 ☺️

#LookOutCSuiteHereSheComes #womenofimpact #invisibletoinvincible

My mission is to help women play a much bigger game – change the world if you will – with big ideas, big vision and big, audacious bucket loads of confidence.

 
Feel like your leadership journey has stalled? Email ablesing@amandablesing.com to set up a 30 min one on one to learn more. Helping clients shift from feeling invisible to becoming invincible in just 12 months

Asking for help is not a sign of weakness - it’s a sign of strength

Why is it that asking for help is so hard? 

As someone with a fierce, independent blueprint, I frequently don’t know I need help, or how to ask for it, until it’s almost too late.

This leaves me overwhelmed, ready to throw in the towel or simply running on empty.

I’m not alone. 

Many people feel this way. 

When we leave a problem too long it can escalate or turn into a crisis.

Or we miss out on opportunities because we can’t see the wood for the trees.

Asking for help isn’t a sign of weakness, ignorance or that you are lacking in some way. 

It can simply mean you are smart and know how to leverage time and resources well. 

Research also tells us that we underestimate how willing others are to help out by a whopping 50%

“There's basically nothing human beings do that's more rewarding and gives them a bigger boost of self-esteem than being helpful” says researcher Heidi Grant.

Being strong independent women who are proud to celebrate #IWD2019 doesn’t mean we have to go it all alone. 

In fact, when we all work on this together, we’ll get a better outcome anyway. 

Asking for help is not a sign of weakness - it’s a sign of strength.

Learning to ask for help might just become your new super power.

YOUR THOUGHTS? Why do we hate to ask for help?

#WomenofImpact #BalanceforBetter

#LookOutCSuiteHereSheComes

 
Feel like your leadership journey has stalled? Email ablesing@amandablesing.com to set up a 30 min one on one to learn more. Helping clients shift from feeling invisible to becoming invincible in just 12 months

Self Promotion Blunders Executive Women Definitely Want to Avoid - national tour

Self Promotion Blunders we all Want to Avoid

If a girl pulls an all-nighter and there’s no one there to see it, does she get promoted?
— Helen Coster

I've made every self promotion blunder in the book and then some. In particular, back in the early 2000s when I'd come back from a stint as an expat and felt I had to make up for lost ground. No-one knew me or remembered the great work I had previously done and I needed to catch up, so I tooted my own hornblew my own trumpet and hustled with the best ..... and the worst of them. 

Then there are other times too, when I suspect that we convince ourselves we don't need to self promote at all, because if we miss out on an opportunity it simply wasn't meant to be.

I get it. It's tough for everyone - and especially tough for executive women.   

COMING OF AGE

Yet it's an absolute career game changer when done right and can make you wonder why they don't teach this in uni.

I had one senior level client just last week tell me she finally feels as though she has made it!   What's changed for her? She is self promoting skilfully, subtly and powerfully inside her current organisation. She feels as though she has come of age career-wise and will never look back.  

This is empowering stuff and I'd love for you to feel this way too. And you can.

So I'm running a series of events to talk about self promotion blunders we all make - from not doing any, through to going OTT. Then we'll talk about what you can do about it and you'll definitely come away with a plan to move forward with.


WHO SHOULD ATTEND?

If you're in the mid level of your career and you are feeling:

  • As though you've managed to get yourself pigeon holed

  • Frustrated and invisible as decision makers overlook you despite stellar work

  • Horrified as others take credit for your work or ideas 

  • Like you're about to be caught out if you don't do something different soon

  • Or maybe you're simply curious about working with me so want to see me in action.

If that's you, why not join me for an intro session? 

We'll examine the 7 self promotion blunders we all want to avoid - and what you can do about it.


Then let's get this self promotion party started! 

Places are limited to ensure everyone feels seen, heard and valued.  

Early registration recommended - check out the events page and book today.

#executiveimpact #LookOutCSuiteHereSheComes #womenofimpact

 

 
Feel like your leadership journey has stalled? Email ablesing@amandablesing.com to set up a 30 min one on one to learn more. Helping clients shift from feeling invisible to becoming invincible in just 12 months

Stop apologising already and get on with the business of making a difference

As Jessica Bennett, author of Feminist Fight Club puts it, "Sorry is a crutch — a tyrannical lady-crutch. It’s a space filler, a hedge, a way to politely ask for something without offending, to appear “soft” while making a demand".

Apologising not only focuses on the fault but also assumes that the fault, if there was one, was yours and keeps you playing small.

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  • Credibility is key in your success and leadership journey

  • While rude is bad (and “unfeminine”), gracious and kind is good

  • And the best bit? Gracious is seen as “the feminine” plus seen as a highly desirable leadership trait in both men and women

  • And graciousness is a credibility builder.

So how do we be gracious yet not over apologise?

TRY THE REFRAME

Say “Thank you” instead of “Sorry”

  • “Sorry I’m late.” Instead - “Thank you for your patience”

  • "Sorry for the needing the meeting moved" Instead - "Thank you for your consideration"

  • "Sorry” when you express an option that’s contrary Instead - “Thanks and what about this idea ..”

Save sorry for when it’s really needed and matters most!

What other examples where thanks might be better than sorry?

#sorrynotsorry #womenofimpact #makeabiggerdifference

READ MORE? https://lnkd.in/fkQqN7r

 
Feel like your leadership journey has stalled? Email ablesing@amandablesing.com to set up a 30 min one on one to learn more. Helping clients shift from feeling invisible to becoming invincible in just 12 months

The burden of guilt for executive women - and how it's keeping us playing small if we let it

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Working Women Guilt is a thing. It's well documented and not just limited to working mothers. Executive women the globe over, whether they are parents or not, talk about feeling guilty. A lot.

Anne Marie Slaughter (Why Women Still Can't Have it All) and Sheryl Sandberg (Lean In) have both written about guilt and women. Feeling guilty has become a way of life for many. 

Negative emotions like loneliness, envy, and guilt have an important role to play in a happy life; they’re big, flashing signs that something needs to change.
— Gretchen Rubin

Things women tell me they feel guilty about:

  • Sleeping in and not getting a workout in before work

  • Not getting up at 5am to start work early

  • Earning more than male peers or partners (if lucky enough!) 

  • Leaving the office before others  

  • Not being there for kids while working

  • Working out, when you should be at home doing something for the kids

  • Asking working mothers to stay back late at the office

  • Making mistakes at work 

  • Not being thin enough / well dressed enough / good enough - full stop

  • Eating/drinking too much

  • Under/over performing 

  • Choosing to take a significant career break whether you are a parent or not

  • Choosing not to take a significant career break as a parent (working mother guilt)

  • Not having a career strategy

  • Not being ambitious enough

  • Being too ambitious

  • Speaking or laughing too loudly in the office

  • Not cooking proper home cooked meals for the family

And the list goes on .....

Guilt can be contradictory, convoluted and complicated. Lots of examples in the list above of damned when we do, and doomed when we don't. And then you feel guilty, or possibly even stupid, for having these contradictory feelings of guilt!

But importantly it's a huge list - hence the burden.

Brené Brown said

“Guilt is just as powerful, but its influence is positive, while shame's is destructive. Shame erodes our courage and fuels disengagement.”

But I suggest that when we are overwhelmed with guilty feelings for too many items, that it leads to feelings of shame. That too much guilt might be the thing that moves the needle on the dial into the danger zone where executive women head back into the realm of underestimating themselves, downplaying their achievements and leaning out, not in or up.

The Stereotype Effect is alive and well for executive women and stronger for women than men. Studies suggest that when we're reminded of our femininity we are more prone to performing to the stereotype, or feel guilty if/when we don't. 

IT'S NOT ALL BAD

There are benefits in feeling guilty. Research tells us that despite what you might imagine, the reward centres in our brain light up when we feel guilt and shame (weird, I know! But at least you are doing something about your problems, not ignoring them).

Then even more research demonstrates that guilt helps with empathy and building and maintaining relationships, with one study finding that while shame was linked to personal distress, guilt was linked to perspective taking.  Is this then why "the feminine" is said to be better at emotional intelligence and relationships? 

But when the burden of guilt becomes overwhelming and possibly even for contradictory issues, it runs the risk of becoming a Catch 22 and a waste of energy. It's distracting, draining and keeps us playing small.

BE LIKE TEFLON

Have you heard the expression "like water off a ducks back" - where hurts and infractions slide right off?  Perhaps we need to embrace that more fully. 

Much easier to do when you are deeply connected to your sense of purpose and why, or have your eyes on the prize. We know that the modesty effect is depressed when you are deeply connected to your sense of purpose, so why not the stereotype effect as well?

So next time you start to berate yourself for eating that extra Tim Tam, instead of feeling guilty, keep your eyes on the prize and practice being like Teflon.

Then remind yourself of the benefits of feeling guilty and then simply get on with the business of being great again!

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► I'm a speaker, mentor and writer on all things self promotion for executive women

► I challenge the status quo to help women carve new pathways for themselves

Feel like your leadership journey has stalled? Email ablesing@amandablesing.com to set up a 30 min one on one to learn more. Helping clients shift from feeling invisible to becoming invincible in just 12 months

The Importance of a Career Strategy for Executive Women

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“She believed she could, so she set a goal, then made a plan and worked the plan til she did.”
— A J Blesing

Do you remember Susan Colantuono's TED talk The Missing 33%?  In summary she says that "The Missing 33% of the career success equation for women is not because women don't or can't have business, strategic and financial acumen, but because very few women are clearly told how essential these skills are for reaching the top."

Great advice. Finally. A solution that works. 

And doesn't it feel good to be able to pinpoint the problem of lack of women in leadership to one particular issue?


IS IT REALLY THAT SIMPLE?


Of course not. It’s an idea, not a silver bullet.

I don't need to tell you that the issue is much more challenging than merely understanding balance sheets - after all there are many superbly financially savvy female executives out there who still struggle.

Case in point my recent gobsmacking conversation with a well known male Financial Columnist who told me that women weren't good with money and didn't care about money and that he only knew two financially savvy female leaders (paraphrased - and perhaps he had watched Susan's TED talk but got the wrong end of the stick).  

Other issues in this complex area include:

  • exclusion tactics by those already in positions of leadership leaving some women believing it’s not only not possible, but not something they really want anyway

  • fewer opportunities at the top for both men and women (ergo higher competition)

  • lack of female role models in CEO roles (just 7% female CEO's in S&P/ASX200 in 2018) and 

  • the subsequent high levels of scrutiny and potential for backlash for executive women, sometimes culminating in a fall over the Glass Cliff which deters many others from following in her footsteps. Another case in point - the recent débâcle at the ABC. 


ANOTHER Idea - another MISSING 33% 

I've discovered a startling fact.

Most women don't have a clear career strategy. In fact, they've probably never even heard of the need for one.

According to recent research from the Women CEOs Speak Study (Korn Ferry and The Rockefeller Foundation, published August, 2018), "65% of the female CEOs surveyed said they only realised they could become a CEO after someone told them so. With few .... female CEOs to model after, only 12% of women CEOs said they had aspired to a CEO role for “a long time.”

In a nutshell, many executive women, including those already leading, don't aspire to become the boss - they don't aim for the top job, they don't believe it's a real option for them and they don't plan for the possibility of getting there. 

Someone else told them it was possible.

And I'm not surprised.

After talking with literally hundreds of women about their career plans here's what I notice in the narrative that surrounds women and their career - 

  • "I was lucky"

  • "Someone tapped me on the shoulder"

  • "I didn't know it was possible until my boss suggested I apply, and even then I didn't feel ready"

  • "I was in the right place at the right time" 

  • "My career just unfolded"

I recently facilitated a discussion with a room full of female CEOs and Managing Directors in Sydney where all but one said they had no plan to lead or clearly defined career strategy, and that the opportunities just presented themselves or unfolded. Three of them said they were simply lucky.

Passive language. No agency.  

Don't forget that luck is really what happens when planning meets opportunity - and not passive at all.


LET'S NOT BLAME THE WOMEN AGAIN
Let's not just blame women for yet another issue that they get wrong. Executive women have enough to feel guilty about without adding lack of career strategy to the burden.

  • We teach women about work - and how to do that well, rigorously, thoroughly and appropriately

  • We teach women about the importance having an identity outside of work

  • We're forever reinforcing the need for women to have work life balance and the ubiquitous Women in Leadership Conference panel on said topic is testament to that.

  • But what we don't teach young women and girls is about the importance of having a career strategy.  

    Is it that we educate boys differently? Yes, but not that much. However, the informal education of young men and boys, along with the role modelling from so many more male leaders definitely  includes the possibility that the top job might be for them should they want it and plan for it.

The socialisation of women and girls leaves a lot to be desired.   After all, many still believe it’s better to have effortlessly been discovered than to be perceived as having strived, pushed and manoeuvred to get to the top.

Organisations need help defining and following the necessary steps to maintain a proven pipeline of female leadership candidates .....….and women need help identifying the right career approaches to prepare for CEO roles.
— Jane Stephenson, Korn Ferry


However educators, coaches, mentors, sponsors, L&D professionals, talent acquisition and retention specialists all need to keep this in mind and ensure career strategy is part of talent development from the get go.  

Ensure that the talent you recruit or champion knows where they are aiming for and of the importance of having a clear plan for how they might get there.  



After all, if they don't know where they are going, how will they know when they get there?


FOR THE INDIVIDUAL? 

Senior level executive women need to ask for support in planning a possible tilt for the top from the moment they're appointed.  It's not over bold, it's simply a strategic play.  Wouldn't you prefer to find out sooner rather than later what the future might hold?

One super talented younger ambitious woman I mentor negotiated her tilt for her new bosses role, prior to her commencement date, with great success. It further enabled her boss to plan his exit strategy and groom her for taking over from the start.

If your career isn't working out for you right now, do something about it. Life's too short to stick in a role going nowhere, with a boss who keeps you playing small, in an organisation that you've out grown.   

You run the risk of becoming a smaller version of yourself and that helps no-one.

So take the time to get back in touch with what's important, where you were heading before you became a square peg in a round hole, and put a plan in action. 

Never forget, don't let perfect be the enemy of the good.

After all, a mediocre plan that you executive is far better than a perfect plan in limbo. And any strategy, even the wrong one, is frequently better than no strategy.


SURVEY TIME
I'd love to know your thoughts - why not have your say?

  • It will only take two minutes and may be just the thing that helps us understand this issue further.

  • Do you attribute your success in your career to luck or planning? 

  • How has your approach worked for you?   

  • Click on the link for this survey to have your say. 

Want help with your career strategy and executive brand?
Why not book in a 30 min one on one  phone call to learn more. 1st in best dressed rules apply.

Feel like your leadership journey has stalled? Email ablesing@amandablesing.com to set up a 30 min one on one to learn more. Helping clients shift from feeling invisible to becoming invincible in just 12 months

How to win with your professional photo shoot

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We all know that people make split second judgments (4 seconds or less).  With CVs and recruitment moving more and more to online platforms like LinkedIn, your photo is one of the things that really matters.  It's a door opener, a trust and credibility builder, and has the potential to add 10s of 1000s of $$ onto your earnings over the course of your career. 

You never get a second chance to make a first impression

The flip side is also true. A bad photo keeps you missing out time and time again, for opportunities that you never even got to hear about. And never will.  

There's an old saying "dress for the job you want, not the job you have". The same goes for your professional headshot.  Your photo should position you for the role of your dreams, and not be something you were lucky to cut out from the previous year's Xmas party snaps. 

My US Celebrity Photoshoot

Four years ago I had my first professional photoshoot done. I was in the USA attending a speaker training week with Michael Port and he had brought a celebrity speaker photographer onsite for us to take advantage of.  It was an eye opening experience to say the least!  David (photographer) was hilarious with his "yeah baby, work it" comments bouncing off the walls as we posed and draped uncomfortably (we had been warned). But the results were phenomenal and we all felt a million bucks! In fact, I'm still using the shots he took then, and would do it again in a heartbeat if I got the chance.

I know many of my clients still feel uncomfortable with this idea. That it's somehow big-noting yourself at worst and unnecessary at best.   So to help feel more comfortable and to make the most of your next photoshoot, here are my nine tips for executive women and busy experts with big, hairy, audacious career goals.

I love the person I’ve become, because I fought to become her
— Kaci Diane

 

Nine Nifty Notes for Preparing for a Successful Photoshoot!


1. Think “successful leader” and “future personal brand” in your industry as you prepare - the role you want, not the role you have.  If you're aiming for a leadership role in a mining company, wear a suit, not the fluro. If you're aiming for a leadership role in education, dress yourself appropriately again. Ask yourself "What do the leaders in my industry typically wear on a good day?"  

2. Bring a change of jacket (or have a top which you could wear with a jacket or without) so you an get advice (and perspective) about what works best. This also means you can have two different looks in your allotted time slot. Head and shoulders is all that's required for LinkedIn.

Amanda_Blesing_Professional_photo

3. Don't be afraid of wearing colour - avoid all black and charcoal gray is definitely out for most women.  Note my own photo has a black jacket but I have a white top underneath for a bit of a highlight. If I had my shoot again (and I will) I'll definitely be adding some colour or highlights. 

4. Show your throat - don't wear a high neckline or collar. According to research this signifies trust. I guess the exception to the rule here would be if you were interviewing for a ski resort where the turtle neck is ubiquitous with style.

5. Aim for a V neckline shape - so if you are wearing a round/square top, pop a structured jacket over the top. The current shape of the LinkedIn photo window doesn't flatter the round neckline much, plus the stereotypes around leadership lend themselves to a more V shaped neckline.

6. Blend the feminine with the masculine - a structured masculine business shirt is also not recommended for most women pitching into leadership - blend the masculine with the feminine (structure & flow/yin & yang).

7. Accessorise with your role (and stereotypes) in mind - a little jewellery is perfect but nothing too dominating. The focus is on you, your leadership cred and building connection.

8. KISS - Steer clear of too much patterning or clutter. It can be distracting. It's you we want to get to know.

9. Makeup is highly recommended - and dress your hair before you go. Although, obviously you can use the facilities onsite if you need.  Don't forget to ask the photographer to photoshop your pick of the images. Blemishes, spots, flyaway hair etc can all be managed for a price. If the celebrities do it, why can't you? 
 

Bonus tip #10  -  Be a poser - Angle yourself so your shoulders are on a diagonal, you are looking back at the camera and smiling. Smiling is great, likability is important. Don't be a afraid to try a range of poses. The pose that felt the most awkward  and uncomfortable for me, was the one I ended up liking the best.  It's not stupid. It's not egotistical. Everyone is a different shape and we all have different goals, so different poses suit different people.

My personal favourite is the arm folded/crossed. It works for me and has worked for a few of my clients.   

Check out Helen , Nuala and Kathryn in their before and after shots.  Phenomenal. (Well done to each of them!) 

Helen Mandziejewski pre photoshoot

Helen Mandziejewski pre photoshoot

Nuala Ward pre photoshoot

Nuala Ward pre photoshoot

Thanks to Helen Mandziejewski

Thanks to Helen Mandziejewski

Thanks to Nuala Ward for sharing

Thanks to Nuala Ward for sharing

Kathryn Vosper pre photoshoot

Kathryn Vosper pre photoshoot

Thanks to Kathryn Vosper for sharing

Thanks to Kathryn Vosper for sharing

 
Here are a couple of great examples for your to check out on LinkedIn.  
 

BEFORE YOU GO - Women of Impact go on tour!

We're heading back on Retreat to Palm Cove in 2019    Limited places as ensuring the right mix of people are in the room is important to the success of the event.

If you're interested in learning more about the program, drop us a note. Click on the button to register your interest and we'll send you the pricing and details.

  • Super Early Bird rates to 14 February

  • Early Bird Pricing to 30 June 2019.

  • Email to learn more

 

Like this? Read more

 

 

Feel like your leadership journey has stalled? Email ablesing@amandablesing.com to set up a 30 min one on one to learn more. Helping clients shift from feeling invisible to becoming invincible in just 12 months

😰Even the #girlboss needs a little pampering every now and then!!!

😰Even the #girlboss needs a little pampering every now and then!!!

Just because you have a strong, independent blueprint or just because you are a leader, doesn't mean you don't need a little help and support or even pampering every now and then.

So maybe it's time 

>> The comic is by Tatsuya Ishida from a strip called Sinfest.   See the full original here

>> The comic is by Tatsuya Ishida from a strip called Sinfest. See the full original here

  • to lift your nose up off the grindstone
  • to look up for a moment & smell the roses
  • to not mistake the map for the territory
  • and ask for a little support or help along the way 🙏

And if you know someone, who is fiercely independent and normally great at stoically coping, it's okay to offer a helping hand. 

We're all in this together and we should be #thrivingnotjustsurviving

 

>> Ask yourself - If you're too busy making everyone else look and feel good, who looks after you? 

>> NEED HELP WITH THIS? 

    >> And do reach out if you're a smart 'n savvy executive woman looking for career support

     

    Tribute to the many strong, independent, entrepreneurial women in my network! 😍

    Tribute also to International Emoji Day 🙏 on July 18, 2018

    #leadership #womenofimpact #leadingwomen #personalbranding

    Read more

     
    Feel like your leadership journey has stalled? Email ablesing@amandablesing.com to set up a 30 min one on one to learn more. Helping clients shift from feeling invisible to becoming invincible in just 12 months

    Perfectionism - is it the main cause of Imposter Syndrome?

    Perfectionism is a curse isn’t it? A raison d'être for some, or creeping up on others when they least expect it!

    I believe we women create a rod of perfectionism for our own back, holding ourselves to exacting, unforgiving and unrealistic standards.

    We want to -

    • cook like Masterchef,
    • have a house that looks like Vogue Living
    • create a career that REALLY counts
    • and then, we wear ourselves out at the gym trying to “look good nekid”

    I’m exhausting just thinking about it!!

    In some of the wisdom traditions perfectionism is seen as a form of self harm or violence - not only against yourself, but against others as well.

    I know it leaves me depleted, with a severe case of imposter syndrome and then leaning out and not trying any more because I’ll “never be good enough”.

    What about you?

    And - is there another way?

    >> YOUR THOUGHTS -  Are you a recovering perfectionist? ? How do you deal with your perfectionist tendencies? Or are you one of the lucky few who missed out on that permutation?

    COMMENTS WELCOME VIA LINKEDIN

    #leadingwomen #womenofimpact #career #personalbranding

     

     
    Feel like your leadership journey has stalled? Email ablesing@amandablesing.com to set up a 30 min one on one to learn more. Helping clients shift from feeling invisible to becoming invincible in just 12 months

    9 signs your sprint style might be undermining you

    9 signs your sprint style might be undermining you_AmandaBlesing.com.png

    I've got a confession to make. I'm a sprinter.  In school athletics I was always the long distance lady and cross country queen. Sprinting wasn't my thing. But when it comes to work, the long slow grind is enough to drive me bananas. I like variety in the peaks and troughs, end to end nature of projects.  

    • Long slow burn with the humdrum of adminisitrivia?  Meh.  
    • Following a process and not colouring outside the lines or questioning? Boring! 
    • BAU with no end in sight? Just shoot me now. I'm yawning just thinking about it.

    However it's not all bad. My sprint style helps me to achieve more than many, deliver on massive deadlines and push the proverbial uphill. I once wrote and produced an online training course on a Sunday - videos and all! And while I was exhausted at the end, I loved every minute. Yet, the thought of going back in and auditing, editing and refining it leaves me sadly cold.

    What is sprinting?
    We all know what sprinting is. That short intense burst of speed and power used to create momentum to get over the finish line or achieve a results.

    • Sprinters sprint - and after a little digging I can see that Flo Jo's 1988 record still stands (who knew?!)
    • Project methodologies use sprinting to harness momentum and meet short term project deadlines
    • Mountain climbers sprint to the summit – have you been reading about Lhakpa Sherpa, arguably the world's greatest female Everest climber? WOW
    • And if you follow Dr Michael Mosely on the BBC (soon to be visiting Melbourne) you know that short bursts of sprinting are awesome for your fitness (HiT) and a great option for women managing cortisol overload and who still want to train

    They're exhilarating, energising, adrenalising .... and they get heaps of stuff done.  And they are the bread and butter of both The Player and The Fixer if you follow my methodology.

    When sprinting for work works?

    • When a project or strategic initiative requires a rapid burst of energy or direction change
    • When you have a new idea and want it to gain traction or launch really fast
    • When you've got a massive workload and you need to get to the finish line on time and on budget 
    • When you've got a deadline looming and need a finish line to eliminate overwork, rework or perfectionism 

    When it doesn't work? 

    • When you are in it for the long haul 
    • When you are worn out, exhausted and overwhelmed and simply don't know what to do next
    • When it's your only style of operating
    I love deadlines. I love the whooshing noise they make as they go by.
    — Douglas Adams

    How do you know?

    As a sprinter from way back, who tends to work with other highly successful sprinters as clients (yes you), I've seen and heard about all the signs. Here are nine signs that you need to recalibrate or wind back on your default sprint mode -

    1. When you get to the end of your HUGE Monday and you're exhausted already, and it's not because you had a big weekend, and it's still only Monday!
    2. When you suffer chest pains from stress at midnight as you finalise last minute updates for your 8.30am presentation the next morning 
    3. When you regularly run for (or miss) your flight because you seem to get to the airport only just in time
    4. When you submit your BAS/tax return on the last day possible - 9 x out of 10
    5. When you are using your sprint to the deadline nature as an excuse for not achieving or as an apology for work you worry isn't going to be good enough
    6. When you submit job applications at the last minute - and use this as an excuse to yourself for missing out because it was such a last minute rush
    7. When you only have two settings - flat out like a lizard drinking or flat out on the couch resting
    8. When your sprints leave you so exhausted or drained that you can't contribute any more either at the office or worse, at home (robbing from the personal to pay for the professional)
    9. When your over reliance on sprints means you have no room for creativity, daydreaming, innovation, reflection and course correction along the way

    The way you do anything is the way you do everything

    Sprint_Pace_Way_to_the_top_AmandaBlesing_com_Mentor_Women_in_leadership.jpg

    If you ticked yes to three or more of the above, there's a fair chance you might want to examine your practices and put mechanisms in place to mitigate the risk of over reliance on your sprint nature. Because if you're over reliant on sprinting in one area of your life you're probably doing it in others and haven't even noticed yet.  

    I find admin support, a coach, accountability, team members who are different styles (yes, diversity), or building in micro deadlines along the way, are all great tactics. Pick one, pick them all. Mitigate the risk of self sabotage.

    And the Gold Standard?  Using the sprint as it was intended, as just one of the tools in your toolkit.  Not relying on the sprint as your only modus operandi.

    Have your say

    • What's your style? Do you rely on sprints? Or do you have more of a slow burn type of approach? Or do you have another tool in your toolkit? 
    • And what ever your approach, what do you do to ensure that it's not your only approach? 
    • Drop me an email because your ideas might just help someone else 

    Want to shift your personal brand from feeling worthless to world class?   
    Why not book in a 30 min one on one  phone call to learn more. 1st in best dressed rules apply.

    Take charge of the narrative before it takes charge of you!

     
    Feel like your leadership journey has stalled? Email ablesing@amandablesing.com to set up a 30 min one on one to learn more. Helping clients shift from feeling invisible to becoming invincible in just 12 months