Males have historically held the reigns in many industries such as finance and franchising, but today, we are seeing this shift as more women start to enter these male-dominated industries. Being one of the first to break into an industry is never easy, but as women take their place at the table, others are inspired to follow in their footsteps.
Shockingly, only 6.5% of women worked full-time in male-dominated occupations across the U.S. in 2020. While history slowly starts to change, many women still struggle to reach their career goals or even feel undeserving of a hard-won position. However, there are a few tried and true, intrinsic ways for women to exceed that can be applicable across any male-dominated industries.
Trust Yourself and Grow Your Confidence
Putting faith in yourself and your capabilities is immensely important. Trust your gut and the strength of your skillset – they have gotten you this far. Women who want a successful career in a male-dominated industry must take risks and get out of their comfort zone. Taking risks with the fear of potential failure may be intimidating, but don’t be afraid; instead, embrace the opportunity.
The knowledge that comes from failure is far greater and more impactful than what comes from success. When you have success, it validates what you are doing is working. But when you experience any capacity of failure, you learn what did not work and have more confidence to try again after making shifts.
The risks you take will become a crucial part of your future success. As you take risks, and continue to grow from both failures and success, you’ll build confidence which will become essential to your long-term career path. And take this a step further – additional tactics to boost your confidence can be learned through research, studying, and leaning on valuable data.
Continue to Learn as Much as You Can
You’ve probably heard the phrase, “respect is earned, not given,” and it rings true regardless of your industry and background. Women may not receive automatic respect in male-dominated industries – even if they have an impressive resume – but if you show you know what you are talking about, you can earn respect.
Put this into practice as quickly as possible by asking questions every chance you get and paying close attention to the answers. Remember, learning is fluid and an evergreen practice. When people stop learning, they stop growing.
One way to fuel outside-the-box thinking is to find additional resources and expertise outside of the four walls of your business. For example, franchising was relatively new to me when I joined the Re-Bath team, so to help with onboarding franchise sales, I started to attend franchise conferences to learn the ins and outs of the industry. Leaders in every category of business need to do their due diligence in keeping up with trends and innovations. External research will help guide your decision-making and enable you to stay one step ahead of your target customers.
Never stop being curious about your business and industry, especially since it will naturally evolve over time. There is not one skill you aren’t capable of learning if you dedicate yourself to finding the educational resources to do so.
As you continue to gain more knowledge, you’ll be better equipped to execute your responsibilities, and your results will speak for themselves.
When moving to a new industry, position or company, the number one thing you need to know is that you’re not above any task. If you’ve done it 100 times before or just once, or even if it seems below your skillset, always commit to putting in every ounce of effort you can. Remain humble when you receive any constructive feedback, embrace it and then put it into action. This will show an unmatched drive and initiative that can bring new opportunities at the drop of a hat.
Humble leaders have the potential to be more effective leaders. Being self-aware and open in the workplace can breed positive results and curb negative influences. Employees may also feel a greater sense of trust with company leaders who are approachable, and this can turn into greater retention and a stronger bottom line.
Be a good listener and learn from the people around you, including your customers. This will allow you to have a greater understanding of the business and be empathetic – which goes hand-in-hand with practicing humility. Make it a point to empathize with and understand the people you work with, celebrate their wins – big and small – and keep a positive attitude. Humble leaders are the ones who quietly rise in the ranks and find long-term success.
We are still feeling the overarching impact of the pandemic and finding ways to navigate the new era it has inspired. Now more than ever, female leaders have the opportunity to really step up, exceed, and prove their capabilities through these fundamental tips.
For more information about Re-Bath and its franchising opportunities, visit https://www.rebathfranchise.com/.
Sharon Villegas, Chief Revenue Officer of Re-Bath, a complete bathroom remodeling franchise.