Many women have overcome barriers in their careers. As the younger generation enters the workforce, some younger women have not faced challenging obstacles in the workplace before. But still, they want to understand how to deal with the situation when the time comes. I have interviewed several women who can help this generation figure out how to overcome some of these barriers in the workplace.
Our marketing team has prepared a segment that displays a couple of questions answered by several successful women in different industries to help the next generation understand how to overcome some of these obstacles in the workplace.
Our team interviewed University Of Central Oklahoma Professor Caroline Humphreys about some obstacles she may have faced during her career as a businesswoman.
Q: What has been the most significant barrier in your career?
A: Her Response: One barrier I believed I faced overtime was the career world's lack of flexibility and options. As women, sometimes we are asked to choose whether we're career women or mothers.
Having more flexible options and paying for what I believe I am worth when my children are younger helped—just the idea of something between being a career woman and motherhood. At times, I did have to choose between staying at home with my children and not choosing to work, but having these breaks in my career made my resume look like a dotted line, which is still a problem in our society.
Q: Have you ever experienced not knowing what to do next?
A: Her Response: Every day. Multiple times every day. I am the type of person who tends to second guess my decisions. Especially in my role as a professor at the University, it is essential to get it right!
I have learned to overcome this by thinking through different options or maybe talking it out with someone, and getting their opinion to see what they think.
Also, being upfront with others about trying new things and being honest about not knowing if something will work, but still be willing to try.
When trying this method with my students, they respond positively to it. They tend to appreciate that I am willing to admit that I don't exactly know what I am doing and still incorporate their feedback on improving. There is something about transparency that people are prone to.
Q: Have you ever had an issue with salary negotiation?
A: Her Response: Starting at a young age, I was completely unaware of even talking about a salary. I understood that the job came with a salary and then figured there was no discussion beyond that.
Believe it or not, I accepted my first job at the Ad Agency, not knowing how much I would make. Crazy huh? Looking back at how much I made back then… I did not make that much. I was making less than I should have.
Lucky for me! I had somewhat of a mentor. A woman older than me had taken me under her wing and helped me realize all things that I just wasn't unaware of as a young woman. One important thing that she explained to me was never to sell yourself short when applying for a job.
This month our team wants to take some to celebrate Women's History Month by providing knowledge from successful women throughout different industries. These women may have experienced things in their careers that the younger generation may not know how to overcome. Check back on March 16th to see who we will feature next!