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15 Things Powerful Women Wish They’d Known 10 Years Ago

14 May 2020 4:09 PM | Kathy Bryan, WOM President (Administrator)

Last week, the Women of Martech steering committee met for the first time ever. As this group of 12 women shared their inspiring stories and experiences, I was in absolute awe. The power of this group was palpable, even though we were meeting via Zoom. This steering committee meeting was a reminder that the stories of this group - and the stories for many women across the martech industry - need to be shared more broadly.

We surveyed the Women of Martech steering committee members about their careers and what they wish they’d known previously. Below is a list of 15 concepts that came up repeatedly throughout the steering committee survey responses.
  1. Don’t use passive language
  2. Be comfortable asking for what you want.
  3. Seek out people you admire and study their attitudes, careers, paths and methodologies.
  4. Don’t let planning keep you from moving forward.
  5. Always ask for feedback.
  6. You don’t have to be perfect.
  7. It’s okay to fail.
  8. Silence is powerful.
  9. Speak up, even when it’s uncomfortable.
  10. Don’t take things personally.
  11. Ignore the noise, and focus on your goals.
  12. Invest in yourself.
  13. Be your own advocate.
  14. Advocate for others.
  15. Never convince yourself that you have to repeatedly prove why you are at the table or in the room.
What’s the common theme throughout all 15 concepts listed above? Confidence.

Sadly, too many women enter the workforce with timid spirits. Though some say the “confidence gap” between men and women is a myth, the thoughts of the Women of Martech steering committee suggest otherwise. According to a recent study by leadership development consultancy Zenger/Folkman, the largest confidence gap occurs at age 25, when 30% of women compared to 50% of men feel professionally confident. Reflective of limited confidence, younger professional women are also less likely than men to grade their work well - even when their managers see them as effective.

So how do we help young professional women become more confident? In part, by telling them it’s okay to be proud. It’s okay to taut your accomplishments and to share your successes. Being awesome is good, not something you should hide. We need to repeatedly show young female professionals that it’s okay to be yourself - your amazing, confident, hardworking, full-of-hustle self. 

It’s our jobs, as the female leaders of today and the role models for the leaders of tomorrow, to demonstrate that women are strong and powerful, and to remind everyone that women in leadership positions are proven to help companies boost revenue. Women of Martech was formed to help amplify the innovations, successes and accomplishments of women. Because, in this case, a louder voice must be part of the solution.

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