5 Skills That All Career Women Must Develop

As career women, it is imperative that we develop these 5 skills and make ourselves better leaders and team members.

Recently I did a fireside chat with Women on IT, where I spoke on the topic of ‘Thriving as an Immigrant Woman of Color in Engineering‘.

Women on IT is a grassroots community that focuses on women in technology and startups, and women leaders.

In one of the questions, I was asked, ‘What are the top 5 soft skills all career-driven women in your opinion should have?’

Here’s the response I gave:–

  1. Self-confidence: The difference in confidence levels between women and men is called the Confidence Gap. When asked in a job interview to list your strengths, it is found that men are far more comfortable self-promoting than women. This comes from a deep level of self-confidence. Women tend to rate themselves lower in test scores than men, even though the results show they did just as well. A way to boost your self-confidence is to practice my mantra-you have earned a seat at the table and your voice deserves to be heard.
  2. Self-Advocacy: Be your biggest self-advocate. You can do this by clearly stating your needs and not being afraid to ask questions and challenge figures of authority.
  3. Decisiveness: It’s better to make the wrong decision than to make no decision at all. Because even if you do something imperfectly, you will learn from it and improve the next time around. This is also known as Action Bias, people favor action over inaction regardless of the outcome.
  4. Be Unapologetic: Now while you’re making that decision we just talked about, don’t apologize for the result. In fact, stop over-apologizing, as this is something women do more than men.
  5. Empathy: Empathy is the ability to perceive others’ feelings while recognizing and connecting with your own. It is not to be confused with sympathy which is feeling sorry for someone. Empathy helps build reliable teams that have each other’s back and hence succeed as a whole. It is no surprise that empathetic people make strong leaders.

    Image Source: Nick Fewings on Unsplash

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About the Author

Niyati Tamaskar

Niyati Tamaskar is a breast cancer survivor, she was diagnosed at the age of 34 while she was breastfeeding her second child. As an engineer, she realized that she was a statistical outlier as this read more...

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