Great read, indeed. Thank you for this! Unfortunately, it wasn’t until I got into a leadership role at a previous company that I felt truly comfortable speaking up in meetings and being good at it. I could say that I was forced to speak up, because it just so happens, that I was the only female supervisor out of the 4 that were in the department. I could’ve easily let their testosterone, strong personalities, and tenure intimidate me. I did not. I spoke up because I wanted and needed to provide a different POV, not just from a just a female perspective, but from the perspective of someone that came into the supervisor position with “fresh eyes” and had worked on the front-line more recently than my male counterparts.
Me sitting quietly and listening and not providing any comments upfront appeared as though I had nothing to say. Little did they know, I was taking in all that was being said. Jotting down all of my points, weighing the pros and cons and more importantly, coming up with other solutions and alternatives for ideas that I didn’t think would work. I earned the respect of my peers and of senior management as well.
Speaking up made me a better leader, an advocate for my direct reports, and a better overall employee in that role and in every career endeavor I’ve had since. I am definitely a proponent of SPEAKING UP!