4 Ways to Shatter the Glass Ceiling to Success

Aug 17, 2021

Did you know there are things you could be doing right now that put a glass ceiling over your head? Don’t worry, you can remove it as fast as you placed it there.

The term “glass ceiling” was actually coined back in 1978 by Marilyn Loden who heard women talking about their own lack of career advancement.

I’ve identified 4 behaviors I see in women that put this glass in place. Here’s what they are and how to remove them from your life.

I don't want to brag about myself 

You know what, I don't want you to brag about yourself either! Bragging would be walking in a room and telling people how great you are because that kind of talk doesn’t share your value.

We are taught at a young age, first and foremost, to not talk about ourselves. Well, that's not helpful when you're sitting in an interview and you MUST talk about yourself.

In this case, I want you to think of the value you bring to the table because an interview’s focus is on your gifts and talents. So, what do you do? Here are some starters:
  • I streamline processes to increase productivity by…...

  • I keep employees engaged by…...

  • I increase revenue by...

  • I create buy-in from different levels in the organization that ……

No matter your job function you increase efficiencies and either decrease costs or increase revenue. You matter to the business, now tell people why.  

I’m not qualified

There have been several studies done that report the same findings. Men apply for jobs when they meet 60% of the qualifications. Women apply when they meet 100%.

You're applying for a job that, technically, you've already done! There's no challenge. In fact, most companies will assume you will get bored in the role and won’t even interview you. Instead, I want you to look at that job posting and as long as you meet 50 to 60% of the job description, apply.

It's really common to say, “Well, I've never done this thing so I can't do it,” but that's not true! How many things have you never done that at some point in your life you HAD to do? Maybe it was homeschooling during the pandemic. I was never planning to do that but last year I was thrown into it. I most certainly wasn’t qualified but I did what I needed to do. What do you need to do to catapult your career to the next level.
I’m afraid to ask for help
Asking questions and knowing what you don't know is actually a form of bravery and you, my friend, are brave. Instead of having imposter syndrome, I want you to gamify the role and tell yourself in 6 months I'm going to know X in this role. You may not know something right this second but that's what books, google and YouTube are for! Constantly learning and growing is part of life. Take up the challenge and ask questions so that you can speed up the learning process.

But also, don't be afraid to delegate. Leveraging your team or coworkers actually creates a richer work product. Use your team so that you don't burn out or give others the impression you aren't a team player. The greatest leaders utilize their teams.

I can’t work normal hours

This is actually more common than you’d think but using it as an excuse to limit your career is a mistake. The pandemic taught us that normal hours don’t matter. In fact, quality work and meeting deadlines matter far more than when and where the work is completed.

Instead, why not apply for remote positions. Did you know LinkedIn is moving its entire company virtual? Why do you think they chose this? Because it allows their workforce more flexibility in their lives. Project deadlines didn’t change, the mindset of what matters most did.

So, are you leading with your value? Are you sharing with others how much you bring to the table? If so, you can work a more flexible schedule contributing at a higher level! But this only happens if you apply to more challenging roles and ask questions to gain knowledge.

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