Week 92: Speak Softly and Carry a Big Stick – #AlphaFemaleFriday
“ WEEK 92 / 133 – 133 WEEKS TO SUCCESS “
President Theodore Roosevelt once said, “speak softly, and carry a big stick” which then became Big Stick Diplomacy: peaceful negotiation while simultaneously reminding other countries that your country has serious military prowess. In the workplace, people sometimes speak too softly in fear of appearing too bullish. You don’t have to stomp your feet and make your presence known to the entire nineteenth floor, but you should make it known to the room.
When we speak too softly, we convey a lack of confidence or uncertainty. When we speak too loudly, we appear to be hard of hearing or overzealous. We should aim to fall somewhere in the middle, but if we’re going to pick one of the two, I would go for overzealous any day. I would rather stumble, disrupt, and fail than glide gracefully, fit in like a puzzle piece, and simply blend in. Life is too short and business is too competitive to be anything other than unique.
One afternoon on an interview, the Director of HR looked back and forth between me and my resume. She asks me, “You seem very intelligent, thoughtful, and like such a nice girl. Underneath all of that, is there another passionate side to you?” I smiled, knowing exactly what she was insinuating. I was applying for a sales job. Was I ready to send people to hell with a handbasket? “I believe in respecting other people,” I said, “and with that respect comes kindness. Kindness should never be confused with weakness.” I hold that belief to this day. Be kind and assertive; speak as softly or as loudly as the occasion calls for, and knowing which to choose is what makes all the difference.
@AlphaFemSociety tweets by @KellyRGonzales
Each week, I take a tip from Lois P. Frankel’s book, Nice Girls Still Don’t Get the Corner Office, and explore how each of these tips affect myself and other women in similar positions on the road to becoming the women we want to be. There are far and few between who are a few steps behind me, and many more who are far advanced. I found that Lois P. Frankel’s advice applied to novice, intermediates, and experts alike. It helped me see that I was already doing right, served as a reminder to keep on doing what I was doing and how to keep that momentum going. The book also showed me areas where I could improve, and gave realistic tips to jump on board. There are a total of 133 tips, and explore one tip per week in a program I call: 133 Weeks to Success.
Join the movement using the hashtag #133WeeksToSuccess with posts which are posted every #AlphaFemaleFriday.