Every day, I witness a certain behaviour that consistently holds women (in particular) back in their professional growth. This common pattern is something I once struggled with, but when I managed to overcome it, my career took a significant turn for the better. In fact, I was promoted from Associate to Partner in just 2.5 years.
The Desire to Please: A Double-Edged Sword
The behaviour I’m talking about is the ever-present desire to please. It might seem like a harmless trait, or even a positive one in certain contexts. However, it often leads to self-sacrifice, overworking, and an unhealthy obsession with validation.
Women who are driven by the need to please often find themselves working harder and longer hours than anyone else. They dedicate every waking moment to their job, hoping that their hard work will eventually be recognised and rewarded.
The Pitfall of ‘Low Recognition’ Tasks
The desire to please doesn’t discriminate between high-profile projects and ‘low recognition’ tasks. If there’s work to be done, we give it our all, even if it’s unlikely to earn us any significant credit or recognition.
But it’s time to change this narrative.
Working Smarter, Not Harder
The secret to climbing the corporate ladder isn’t about trying to do everything. Instead, it’s about working smarter, not harder. It’s about discerning how you invest your energy and time. After all, those who make it to the top are often the ones who know where to focus their efforts and when to delegate.
Chasing validation through tireless work is not sustainable, nor is it healthy. You don’t need to burn yourself out to prove your worth. In fact, preserving your well-being is crucial when you’re playing the long game in your career.
Empowering Women in Business
The key thing to remember is this: your value is not determined by how much you can do or how hard you work.
Your worth is intrinsic.
So, break free from these chains and start working smarter.