Women reaching out to help other women thrive is both beautiful and inspiring. We should be each other’s biggest supporters. Today more than ever before, we have been applauded for our numerous accomplishments in society.
Women pioneers have continued to make formidable progress throughout history. From scientists to astronauts, women have done it all. We’re influential in ways that were unimaginable even just a few years ago.
These accomplishments are a result of our collective hard work and perseverance. As such, many organizations and their leaders are finally listening. They are embracing ways to empower the women they employ so they can thrive. However, these efforts are often beyond our control and many won’t change things quickly.
So, in celebration of Women’s History Month, here are 6 ways women can support other women in the workplace and be a part of our gender’s continued upward momentum.
#1 Support Through Partnership
Find opportunities to connect with other women professionally and socially by:
- Reaching out to trailblazers you admire so you can learn from their challenges
- Participating in conversations and experiences with like-minded peers
- Helping to promote a culture of sensitivity, support and inclusion
- Utilizing social media to network, arrange meet-ups and stay in contact outside of the workplace
Whatever method you choose, it is important we take time to understand what other women are accomplishing where we work to show them our support. Mentoring or being mentored can start a dialogue. It may help you advance your own career track or launch someone on their own path of success.
Through partnership, we can share ideas and knowledge which makes us stronger and more powerful as we continue to reshape our workplaces.
#2 Support With Encouragement
As the first female Secretary of State, Madeline Albright once said, “It took me quite a long time to develop a voice, and now that I have it, I am not going to be silent.” Finding your voice is an important milestone in anyone’s life. Some of us have an easier time than others.
If you already found your voice, help those of us still seeking the courage to let ours be heard. If you’re one of us still searching for your place, urge peers you respect most to voice their ideas and opinions more. Then stand by them so they don’t feel like they are going it alone.
We need to urge our female coworkers to take the lead in the workplace. To accomplish this, whenever possible, show your support by helping to magnify their ideas within your organization. Provide reassurance to help them work through any challenges.
With encouragement we can continue to make great strides for ourselves and future generations of young women to come.
#3 Support From Inspiration
No matter who you are or what you do for work, we all have the ability to be an inspiration to someone. Likewise, allowing yourself to be inspired can affect your outlook, your mood and even your confidence.
We can inspire one another. Challenge other women to look out for their female coworkers rather than compete against them. At work, find ways to help women peers in leadership roles to excel and continue to advance within your company. Help motivate them to continually push forward within their roles at work.
Pamay Bassey, CLO at the Kraft Heinz Company inspired her peers to #MakeTimeForLearning. She inspired others outside her company’s walls through her own example of setting goals to learn every day.
From inspiration, we can collectively achieve great things, making it easier for other women to achieve their own vision.
#4 Support By Teaming Up
“There is always strength in numbers,” once said former PBS NewsHour journalist, Mark Shields. However cliche, it doesn’t make it any less true. Form a band of sisters! Find a group of women at work to cheer you on, lean on when you are stressed or go to for advice when you are struggling with a decision.
Don’t stand alone. Reach out to female coworkers who can offer the encouragement and insight to make you stronger. As women, we all could use our own group of warriors who will speak up in support or simply offer a helping hand when we need it most.
By teaming up, women can unite in support of one another, making us a more formidable force in the workplace.
#5 Support By Building
Supporting one another only goes so far, especially if you find you or a coworker are constantly swimming upstream. Don’t settle for simply being supportive of your gender equals. Use your team to change your corporate culture.
Together women can create new opportunities and effect lasting change by leading their organization’s transformation. Your company’s culture is shaped by the people it hires, the practices and policies it implements and the opportunities it creates. Everything from dress code, to office configuration. From work hours to hiring and promotion. Every detail plays a part in establishing an organization’s culture.
By nature humans, resist change for change sake. However, over time cultures do change. We call it evolution and the idea applies to corporate culture just as much as world cultures. So don’t be afraid to make your mark. Help build a culture which is inclusive and champions women for their talent and hard work. Accomplishing even the smallest movement in the right direction can be a monumental win.
From building an inclusive, supportive corporate culture, we can ensure changes are lasting and harder to undo on the whim of a minority voice.
#6 Support Through Giving Back
Depending on where you are in your career, what level of success you may have achieved or how much power you might or might not have, giving back is always important. We should all be mindful of the millions of impressionable young girls who are following in our footsteps and do what we can to help. Our mothers, grandmothers, aunts, neighbors and female icons did it for us. Now it is our turn.
Working women need to make time to mentor young women. Assist them in not setting boundaries or caps on their future career goals. Take time out of your busy schedule to listen and offer advice. Educate girls about internship opportunities and programs supported by local organizations. Young women can benefit greatly from our collective knowledge, experiences, and accomplishments.
By giving back and being a positive role model for future generations of women, we solidify our own generation’s legacy.
Women have made massive strides in virtually every industry. They have climbed to unrivaled heights at workplaces around the world to lead teams, departments, companies and governments. Despite many obstacles and biases, women like us continue to break barriers. Every one of us can do our part to solidify those gains at work while we strive to effect a more permanent, cultural change.
As we remember and celebrate the pioneers of our gender this month, go the extra mile to lift other women up rather than tear them down. At work, champion the accomplishments of your female peers and ensure credit is given where it is due.
When we elevate one woman, we’re helping to build up all women. Working together, there is so much more we can do to encourage and assist working women. By embracing these 6 ideals of partnership, encouragement, inspiration, teaming up, building and giving back, you too can pioneer change in your workplace and beyond.
How do you support women in your organization? What assistance do you receive at work from your female peers? What each of us has to say matters, share your stories with me!
Elizabeth Paturi is the digital communications manager for TrainingPros and has been responsible for social media strategies and marketing projects for the firm since 2013. As an innovative and resourceful social media marketing professional who enjoys creativity and ingenuity, Elizabeth thrives in a fast-paced, purpose-driven environment where she can enhance business development. She earned a Bachelor of Science in business administration from The University of Texas in Dallas with an emphasis on management information systems. She now lives in metro Atlanta. When learning leaders have more projects than they have people, TrainingPros can provide the right L&D consultants so they can start their projects with confidence. Visit TrainingPros for more information. TrainingPros is a WBENC-Certified Women's Business Enterprise.