The entrepreneurial world can be rough, but women entrepreneurs have it particularly hard. Though substantial steps have been taken in equality for all genders, there’s still a bias against women in the business world. Due to this bias, no matter how subtle it may be, women’s voices are often spoken over and not heard when they bring up issues they deal with on a daily basis.
It can be extremely difficult to find your voice when you’re used to being spoken over, but finding your voice and speaking up as an entrepreneurial woman will not only help your sense of self but for others who feel similarly to you who can’t speak up for themselves. Here are some ways you can find your voice and speak out.
Find Your Value
Everyone has value, and that includes women entrepreneurs. You need to be clear that you’re not what others make of you; you have an understanding of who you are and what you’re capable of doing. By actively seeking out and discovering your own worth, you’ll be better poised to speak up against those who would try to push you to the side and not take your contributions seriously. The first person who should believe in you is yourself, which will add confidence to your contributions and be noticeable by your peers.
Follow Your Inner Voice
Gut instincts are usually correct, but not everyone follows their instincts. These instincts—your inner voice—are meant to guide you through difficult situations and rough times. It’s an innate instinct that fits the way you function, think, perceive, and interact with the world around you. Someone else’s inner voice won’t apply to you just as yours won’t apply to others; listen to yourself and find the confidence to challenge the world in the face of adversity. If you’re confident when expressing your feelings, people will listen to what you have to say.
Don’t Be Humble
Though being humble is good in some scenarios, you can’t afford to be humble in the business world. If you achieve something, you should report them. Use your achievements as conversation starters or engagement during a conversation. You should know all the details, facts, and numbers associated with your achievements so that, when asked, you can refer to them accurately.
Find an Advocate
You can’t be the only one speaking for who you are as a professional. Search for a friend or peer who will be willing to advocate for you and introduce you to others. These people will introduce you to others in a way that you won’t introduce yourself, and that is all the more powerful. The more often you hear people describe your accomplishments, the more easily you’ll accept and own that language.
Doaa Dashoush is an experienced businesswoman in the fashion industry. She currently serves as the President and CEO of GFASHION, a global luxury brand currently based in New York City. GFASHION prides themselves on their unique approach to the industry. They don’t follow trends set by others. The Luxury brand focuses on innovative design through their work with the top designers on collections that reflect the company’s craftsmanship.