Secrets of the Sisterhood: Glassdoor Women On Their Best Career Advice
Maya Angelou once said, “I love to see a young girl go out and grab the world by the lapels. Life’s a bitch. You’ve got to go out and kick ass.” Candid, uncensored and absolutely true, Angelou embodied what was to be a confident woman who was never too busy to empower her fellow sister.
On International Women’s Day, it is more important than ever to inspire and guide the next generation of #girlbosses to make their mark on the world. In that effort, we reached out to our fellow Glassdoor sisters to ask, “What is your best piece of career advice for young women?” From engineers to marketers, senior executives to associates, U.S. nationals and international team members, the advice poured in. Why the excitement? Because Glassdoor is dedicated to helping achieve equality in the workplace.
So here’s what Glassdoor’s best and brightest have to offer to young women who are working hard and blazing trails:
“Always say yes not only to the opportunities that come knocking at your door, but especially to the hidden opportunities that are just sitting there and no one has found them yet — being enthusiastic about work is the single greatest gift you can give to yourself.” — Jyotsna Jayaraman, Senior Data Analyst
“Keep challenging yourself by choosing scary or hard career decisions, you’ll surprise yourself.” — Heather Friedland, Chief Product Officer
“You don’t have to act like a man to make it in business, be exactly who you are and those strengths translate to your success in ways you may not have realized possible. For example, ladies who flirt to get what they want at work are silly. Women who use their unique skill sets to assess relationships, communicate effectively and influence leadership are the ones who get shit done. Be a badass girl boss, not an imposter of a dude.” — Lisa Holden, Employer Communications Manager
“Keep challenging yourself. Don’t ever settle. I think it’s so important to encourage young women to constantly push themselves in every aspect of their career. Too often I see women not apply for roles because they think they’re under-qualified. Or forgo negotiating a higher salary because the offer is ‘good enough.’ Or stay quiet when they disagree because they don’t want to seem “difficult.” Push yourself and don’t be afraid. Don’t back down from anything that may intimidate you. Without the fight, you’ll never know what you can achieve. And in a world where men still dominate leadership roles, it’s important to be confident and make your voice heard.” — Stephanie Sosa, Senior Engagement Marketing Associate
“The best way to negotiate for your next job is to be great at your current one.” — Kira Federer, Senior Manager of Product Marketing
“Step outside your comfort zone early and often. Life is made up of experiences in a range of different settings. One can go through life very comfortable in familiar roles and places. However, growth and expansion often come from stepping outside of normal to learn new skills, live in new places, experience new companies and cultures, and meet new people. If an opportunity makes you uneasy, it might be the perfect leap to take.” — Dawn Lyon, VP of Global Corporate Affairs
“Don’t be afraid to take chances. Never be afraid to negotiate when you know your value, get paid what you’re worth. Always make sure you have happiness at work: it’s never worth suffering through 40 hours a week if you can’t find a reason to smile at least a few times per day.” — Andrea Johnson, Senior Customer Success Manager
“You don’t have to be perfect to be loved. If you’re having a bad hair day or wore the wrong shoes or accidentally sent an email to the wrong person — it’s okay.” — Fritzi Roth, Product Specialist-Germany
“Do not be afraid to take risks or ask questions. I’ve always found that when paired together, these are two notions compliment each other so well. If you learn to ask the right questions, and be naturally curious — taking on risk in your career will be more strategic. Everyone you interact with on a day to day has career goals, both long and short term. The more you can understand what others are trying to achieve, the easier it is to align your goals. This allows more confidence when taking on riskier projects or positions.” — Jill Singerland, Enterprise Account Manager
“Ruthlessly prioritize what you want from your career and make sure you take steps to get there. This can mean some personal changes as well as changes in the way we manage our homes especially when you have a partner.” — Divya Tiwari, Senior Software Engineer
“Have an unwavering belief in yourself, what you’re made of, and what got you this far. When it comes to making career decisions, I’ve found that it typically works out best when you prioritize enjoying your work and who you are working over superficial perks or fancy titles.” — Kate Ahlering, VP of Sales, Talent Solutions
“Find a mentor outside of your current company. It’s great to have a good relationship with your manager and your peers, but if you want the cold, hard truth and some real feedback, find yourself a mentor who is not at your company. You’ll be able to ask them more questions and tell them about your doubts without fear of how that will make you appear. This also makes it more likely that they’ll be able to share more information on negotiation and compensation, which is a sensitive topic if you’re at the same company.” — Brianna Jang, Lead Product Manager
“Be vocal. Don’t be afraid to voice when you are underpaid or undervalued. Be yourself and push down as many walls as you can. If you aren’t doing things that make you a little scared, then you aren’t working hard enough.” — Alicia Garibaldi, Associate Director of B2B Marketing
“Don’t let anyone tell you, ‘You can’t be picky.’ You can. If you’re looking for a job and company that will challenge you, motivate you and give you opportunities to grow, you should not settle for anything until you find it. Whatever you are looking for, it’s out there, and you shouldn’t accept anything less.” — Sydney Cohen, Content Marketing Coordinator
“Don’t be afraid to ask for what you deserve. When I first started my career, I was too afraid to negotiate my salary. I didn’t want to jeopardize my job offer. Because of this, I spent many years trying to get to the level of pay I thought I deserved.” — Shay Berry, Senior Marketing Manager
“Constantly learn, you are always a student. Don’t expect someone to teach you, seek your own growth and it will come.” — Samantha Zupan, Senior Director of Global Corporate Communications
“Three, five and 10 year goals are great to have, but be prepared for life to be very different than you planned. The only constant there is is change. So, learn to roll with it. The more flexible and adaptable you can be, the more successful and happier you will be too.” — Laura Moon, VP of Content & Community
“Do not be afraid to take an educated risk. If you feel you have what it takes then go for it. Failure is not a bad thing and all great successes were built on a sea of failures. I love this quote from the chap that invented the light bulb, after he ‘failed’ multiple times to make his invention work: ‘I now know of over 9000 ways in which the light bulb won’t work.’” — Leanne Kehoe, Head of Channel Sales UK
“Recognize your strengths and spend more time focusing on how to continue to grow and use them and spend less time focusing on your areas of weakness. Early in your career when you don’t have your experience to rely on, your strengths are your secret weapon. Use them!” — Annie Pearl, VP of Product Management
Originally published at www.glassdoor.com on March 8, 2017.