I've got so much love for Carolyn Everson right now - I could not agree more with what she says in this article!
Ladies, it's time to pop your professional persona bubble.
Women in business have long been encouraged to "act like men" if they want to have a successful career - which has never sat well with me. But what it has resulted in is a business culture whereby women feel the need to have two versions of themselves.
When people start worrying about trying to change aspects of themselves to suit other peoples expectations, they lose focus on their goals. So instead of working toward their dreams, they waste their time trying to be something their not - it's no wonder men, who have always been accepted for who they are, have traditionally reached leadership positions easier than women.
Maybe that's been the key along...
At the end of the day, it does make sense. To win peoples trust (both employer and client) they have to feel like you are being genuine and it's extremely easy to spot when someone is putting on a show.
I experience it all the time when speaking to women when networking - they do feel like they can't be themselves at work and that they have to hold parts of themselves back.
But, I hope this article gives all business professionals comfort that they can and should be their 'authentic selves.'
Everson, who is responsible for looking after medium and large businesses as well as the agency community for Facebook, said the days of women following outdated advice on how women should behave are over. “Being authentic is most important – 20 years ago, women would be given advice on how they should behave or act. But whatever that self is, the authentic self is your most powerful self. How you present yourself has got to be very true to what you are. Women should find organisations that really speak to them and highlight their strengths,” she added.