Susannah Breslin in her Forbes piece How to be a bitch at work, outlines how being a bitch has helped her career and increased her salary. She mentions 3 strategies to achieve that worthy goal. But as you will see when you read the suggestions below, these are simply sensible, effective, professional skills and strategies. Why are the women who employ them considered bitches rather than successful professionals and why is another woman extending that myth?
Suggesting that this type of career approach is a form of ”bitchiness”, is perpetuating gender stereotyping that professionally-focused successful women are for some reason “malicious, unpleasant, selfish“, with behaviour that is somehow contrary and therefore not OK. Isn’t it time we women stopped doing that? Why is this even going on?
- TIP #1: Don’t be available. “Making yourself seem overly available at work doesn’t make you seem like a hard worker. It makes you seem like a pushover“. Being focused, with effective time management and communication skills, with clear boundaries and the ability to distinguish between productivity and activity are excellent skills for any professional – male or female. If a woman demonstrates these skills she is not a bitch.
- TIP #2: Don’t work cheap. “Agree to be paid little, and others will think you’re of little value. Agree to be paid a lot, and others will think you’re of great value.” Assertive negotiation skills, particularly in the area of compensation, are invaluable. Expertise in this area makes you a skilled negotiator – not a bitch!
- TIP #3: Don’t be a pleaser. “The most important battles you win professionally come when you refuse to say yes. Resist the pressure to make everyone else happy and make yourself happy instead.” Balancing defined personal goals with other obligations is important, rather than putting everyone else’s needs before your own, and requires clear and constructively communicated boundaries. Achieving this does not make you a bitch!
Women get enough mixed messages from a predominantly male corporate culture. Why would we even contribute and add to gender stereotype propaganda? Unless it’s to say……