Vincy Workplace
February 4, 2005
Empowering women – Equal rights

As we wrap up this series on empowering women, there are a few more tips that must be addressed in order to give women the competitive edge in the workplace. For too long women have been misinformed or not informed at all about business survival skills. {{more}}Here are a few more to be aware of.

Our own worse enemy. You’ve all heard it before; women can sometimes be very tough on other women in the workplace. Whether its misplaced anger and frustration or a need to prove themselves just as tough, women who engage in such behaviour must know that their true power and longevity as business women is measured by their ability to build alliances, not create friction.

Being overly demanding of female colleagues only demonstrates an inability to lead and to be effective.

All things are not equal. Although women have made significant strides in obtaining equal rights there is still a long way to go and some gaps may not close for a long time, if ever. Men still get paid on average more than women for the same job and there are some physically demanding professions many women are unable to perform as well as a man. Women should not give up the right to fight for equality especially equal work for equal pay but at the same time, equality does not mean that women should reject men or launch an anti man campaign. Lighten up a bit, it’s still O.K if a man wants to hold the door for you as you enter a room, just say thank you.

Stop the tears. Some women have the tendency to cry for just about everything, if a senior person speaks too harshly, if a decision is made that you do not agree with, or if a colleague confronts them. But these are not reasons to cry. Yes, women are known to be a bit more sensitive than men, but do not lose your composure over little things. Crying women are seen as weak and too emotionally unstable to lead. Reserve the tears for situations like death or a major loss. If you feel you must cry, by all means please excuse yourself and take a few moments to pull yourself together in private.

As a woman, young or mature take the time to empower yourself, read, talk to people and push yourself to achieve what you were born to achieve.

• Karen Hinds works with companies and professionals to develop their competitive edge through effective communications, image management and customer service. Send comments and suggestions to