Women’s History Month is always like a breathe of fresh air. To listen to our young powerful girls form the #STEPUP community to the powerful #Girlbosses in media. With the movement of female power and #metoo brings us more together in knowing our voices matter at any age. We can stand our ground and create a movement for what is right or what is wrong. Giving today’s climate we are now setting higher goals, collaborating more, digging in, and being more conscious of what we’re not going to accept.
"Your Network determines Your Net Worth,” an old saying with new value. Today’s net worth accounts for more than monetary value, social capital adds new value when it comes to expanding your personal network.
Growing a professional network in today's creative economy is not only essential, it's necessary to compete with the barrage of well-branded millennials and others who are leveraging their personal brand and professional network to generate success, opportunities, and wealth. As a Brand Therapist, my first question to every single client regardless of their background or profession is: do you have a solid professional network. Having a professional network is the foundation of leveraging relationships and identifying opportunities. No matter where you are in your profession or personal journey, here are 3 things to keep in mind as you increase your social capital and expand your personal network.
"It Goes Down in the DM," song lyrics implying that connections take place via direct message. Connections are what you make them. For those looking to expand their personal network, DMs are a great way to introduce yourself to people in your social network to grow your professional network. The majority of social media platforms are one-sided communication, where the user communicates to a mass audience. DMs are your opportunity to start a direct 2-way conversation. I recommend a friendly professional introduction that leads with who you are and why you’re reaching out, and that ends with an “ask,” the ask may be as simple as keeping in touch, or the ask may be an invite for coffee or a phone conversation if the person is not local.
Be Responsive- there are so many missed opportunities, simply because people are non-responsive. Whether it’s not responding to emails or not maximizing social media friend requests, being non-responsive is a habit that can severely decrease your social capital and shrink your personal network. Skim through your email to make sure you haven’t missed an opportunity to connect with someone that can be of value to you. Chances are you may have overlooked an email or simply ignored an email where someone reached out to you. Leave no stone unturned, you never know what opportunity exists behind the email you overlooked or didn’t deem important. The same applies for social media friend requests, take a moment to check out the person’s profile to identify if there are any synergies or traits that interest you if so, go beyond accepting their friend request and send them a direct message.
Go Alone- this is a golden rule for attending events with the goal of networking. Going alone forces you to converse with people that you may not have spoken to if you were with someone. Often times being with someone keeps us in our comfort zone and keeps us from branching out to meet new people. Make a commitment to attend a few events alone. It can be uncomfortable but the reward of making new connections and exercising your social skills pays off significantly.
Audrey Woodley is Brand Therapist who helps women identify solutions to their brand challenges. She uses new-age problem-solving tactics, proven strategies, and customized solutions to help women build and sustain a successful brand.
Living in a male-dominated where people are always on their jobs makes it difficult for women to maintain a work-life balance. So how can a career woman be a family woman as well?
Maintaining this balance is especially difficult during a career transition. Below are five ways you can build and maintain a work-life balance.
Reading is essential because it helps you relax and it increases your knowledge and tolerance. When you are going through a transition in your career, reading at least one book a month will help you face the challenges ahead. You can read one page each day. So go to a bookstore and get books for training ambitious women.
Books you can read include:
The Effective Executive
Good to Great
Giants of Enterprise
Leadership and Self-Deception
Thinking, Fast, and Slow
2. Engage in Team-Building and Regular Exercises
If you're a business owner, you can start an arrangement for team-building exercises. Allow your employees the opportunity to foster a sense of team Building Teamwork in the office. Let them depend on each other for support.
Working out personally and with your team will also help stimulate the brain and boost productivity. You'll have a healthy, happy life and as such, stress will be reduced to the barest minimum.
Boost your level of awareness by journaling your thoughts and feelings. It will help you identify and treat the problem. You'll be able to review your past and make amends for the future. Think about your ideas, career ambitions, family goals and write them all down. Write your setbacks and your success.
Journaling helps you pay attention to what matters and how everything came to be. It helps build your confidence; it builds momentum, and it deepens the level of connection and awareness in your work and life. It propels you towards what you want to accomplish. When you keep a journal you'll be mindful all the time.
4. Community Service Project
Engaging in community service projects along with your team members. It will help boost team productivity and teamwork. It is relatively easy to start these projects. When you engage in community service, you feel happier, gain some experience, it offers more options and flexibility, and you'll be making a difference in the world.
It doesn't matter how strong you are; you can't do everything by yourself. You need to learn to delegate duties at home. If you have kids, assign each one to chore and certify them when they complete tasks. This is a good way to encourage them to keep helping you.
If you are an entrepreneur, you need to learn to delegate tasks to your employees. Let them work with you to make your business grow. Allow them to share their thoughts and opinions with you.
No matter what, always remember that it's not a one size fits all situation. However, these tips will help you make productive decisions at home and work. Always have a plan!
Audrey Woodley is Brand Therapist who helps women identify solutions to their brand challenges. She uses new-age problem solving tactics, proven strategies and customized solutions to help women build and sustain a successful brand.