The Working Woman’s Guide to Beneficial Bragging
Apr 05, 2021
Are you ready for closing the stubborn gap between men's and women's advancement at work?
How would it be if women had new ways of getting a promotion, earn more money, and take that seat at the table?
What would happen if you acknowledged that your strategies for career advancement may have served you once, but are no longer working?
Women tend to rely on the following ideas about their value and accomplishments:
- People will (or should) automatically recognize great work and reward them for it – either with a promotion or increased pay.
- People will remember what they did and how they contributed.
- Bragging is unpleasant and abrasive behavior. It’s a turn-off professionally and personally, so it should be avoided.
In reality, the issue is not that most people are ignorant of our accomplishments. They simply forget. We even tend to forget many of our own accomplishments as we deliver them day after day. A fact that comes clear to mind before and during performance appraisal meetings. If we don’t remember everything important we did, why would anyone else?
Self-promotion a necessity for career advancement. It is not a red flag that someone is insecure or lacks confidence as many women believe. Take into account that self-promotion is one of the main reasons why men rise the corporate ladder faster and earn fatter paychecks than women.
Consider helping the people around you to advocate for you by reminding them how much you have contributed and how great you really are.
Is it worth finding out how to do this without being insufferable? Then try this:
Preparing to Brag
- Motivate yourself. Remember the value of self-promotion. By some estimates, the average woman still earns about a million dollars less than the average man throughout her lifetime. Dream of what you could do with the extra money. Consider using self-promotion to change the quality of your life.
- Create a brag list. Imagine how much easier it will be to remember everything you did when you need to share it. It will also make you feel more confident. Remember the feeling when you completed the work that you are most proud of. It will boost your courage and make it more natural to share.
- Pair up. Consider encouraging your peers and colleagues to create their own brag list and team up to compare notes. How much would you be able to add after getting feedback from allies? How would you feel when your bragging was greeted with cheers? How much stronger, confident, and radiant would you become?
Strategies for Bragging
- Start small. Your besties will probably be enthusiastic about anything you have to say. Consider rehearsing a story with them before you try it at work. Build confidence in bragging in incremental steps. Remember that confidence is like a muscle. The more you use it, the stronger it becomes. You will not start with a 50-pound dumbbell. You begin with 15 pounds. Bragging too much too early will only make you feel awkward. When you feel awkward, the people around you will do, too. Consider building confidence step by step.
- Be a promoter of others. Women are often better at promoting their friends rather than themselves. How much more powerful will you feel if you used that strength more often? Imagine being more visible because you are an acknowledgment machine that respects, honors, and values the people around you. Then envision them returning the favor and putting you in the spotlight.
- Focus on outcomes. Consider making specific and quantifiable statements. Unless you are coming straight out of college, stating that you are a hard worker and team player won’t cut it anymore. You better have results to demonstrate. Think in terms of quantifiable numbers or results. Envision the different responses will get when you share that you have won a prestigious award instead of just saying that you are a rock star.
- Pace yourself. It’s good to be comfortable talking about yourself. Think of the appropriate time, place, and person. People tend to listen better in the morning or when they are fresh. They are more receptive when they touch something. A little brag when the other person holds a warm cup of coffee is more effective than a big brag in the conference room in the afternoon. Consider focusing on three people who are very well equipped to cheer you up and support you and avoiding to spam everyone around you. Practice cultivating plenty of other topics of conversation to avoid seeming self-centered.
- Ask. It’s not enough to brag and then wait for people to help you advance your career. Remember that most people will do more for others than they will do for themselves. Instead of spending hours talking in circles about your idea and hoping that somehow the other person will be able to figure out what it is you want, just ask for it. The more clarity you can have about what you want, the better. Consider learning to make a lot of requests and getting better at making those requests (which comes only with practice).
A little grandstanding is good for your career. Tooting your own horn pays off, even if it feels uncomfortable at first. Imagine how fast you can advance when everybody knows about your greatness, remembers your achievements, and is clear about how they can help.