Some time ago I talked about the impostor syndrome, which makes us feel inadequate, leading us to think that sooner or later they will discover that we are not good at our jobs, that we are not competent enough for our role.
Today I met a close friend of mine who recently changed jobs, now holding a prestigious position at a PR firm. I wanted to have all the the details about the interview and selection process. I was so happy and proud of her!
“Well done, B.! You have reached an important goal in your career! You deserved it, after so much work! ”
“Actually, I was just very lucky…”, she replied.
What she said made me think.
It is not the first time I hear a woman owing her achievements to Lady Luck. I myself have pointed at her when talking about my progress, my results, my promotions.
But what is it? And plus, don’t they say it is blind? If so, how is it possible that there is such a high concentration of lucky women at work? It seems to me just a little bit weird, to be frank.
I think it’s more appropriate to replace the word luck with skills, competence, excellence and also with the word “timing”. It is never easy to find the right way when it comes to jobs, careers and satisfaction. It is even less easy for us women. For this reason it is important, especially for us, to seize the moment and be ready when the opportunity presents itself.
Not an easy task! For this to happen, barriers such as fear and impostor syndrome, questions like “will all be against me?”, “what should I do with the kids?”, “what will my partner say?” are handled and, if not torn down, at least resized.
It is true of course that there are women who are luckier than others: education, money, chance to travel can certainly make a difference in a woman’s career. But other than that I see nothing.
Luck ends there.
Pessimism, downplaying one’s achievements do not help. Moreover, if this attitude is shown by women who made it and are successful, who are supposed to be mentors and role models, the issue gets even more serious: who else would be willing to try if it is just a question of luck?
No way, I don’t buy it. Let’s celebrate success, let’s celebrate talent.
Nothing falls out of the sky. Women’s achievements are no exception.
Originally published at paolastefy.wordpress.com on July 17, 2014.