Now is the time for women's equality in Congress and at all other government and corporate decision-making levels. With men, we get rhetoric, more problems and no answers -- but lots of excuses. I am convinced that we need women's realistic, common-sense approach to the needs of modern America. With the current, male-dominated workplace, our country receives severe criticism for its poor standards. A complete upgrading is needed, and my experience proves that women do not accept low standards when they are the decision-makers. They just do not accept poor-quality thinking and performances. We need a new coalescence, one based on grass-roots reality, one designed to produce a firm commitment to respond to society's needs and to improve our nation's standards.
Success Doesn't Always Come Easy
Women, you will need to make this change happen for yourselves. You will need to formulate new rules, new standards, that you must in turn implement, enforce and uphold. The new standards must include the premise that sexual differences must be accepted as merely physical and not permitted to preempt your ability to excel in the workplace.
You must aim at excellence: you will have to become exceptional in the areas of education, experience and leadership, so that men will see your true value and be eager to follow you. You will have to work harder and be more dedicated. I urge you to reach for these higher standards and teach men what "good" really means. You can be the catalyst. The time is now to develop yourselves and plan your goals to succeed so that this male trend can be reversed. You can do it! You really can!
Time For Change
Are you ready for this challenge? You will need resolve and you won't succeed with self-doubt. You must be committed to success and be ready to prove to the world that you are as good as any man. I want to see you succeed in this as I know you are strong and the measure of any man. Daily, I have observed the superior way in which you approach work projects and stick with them. My experience proves that you do this much better than men do. I, along with other clear thinking men, would rather have you performing a job than a man because of the superior results and the time saved. You, likewise, know you are as good as any man. Now is your time to prove it, so prepare yourself for new opportunities. George Bernard Shaw explains equality in a poignant way: "A woman is really only a man in petticoats, or, if you like, a man is a woman without petticoats."
When Opportunity Knocks
All too often I have witnessed your hesitation or refusal to accept an earned promotion, new opportunity, new responsibility or any new, innovative challenge. You have turned down many a job advancement because you let your self-esteem, self-confidence or self-worth dictate your thinking. You have, in fact, resorted at times to stereotypical excuses that denounced yourself and your capabilities.
During my years of corporate experience, I watched a more deserving woman step aside so that a man could take the promotion or better job in her place. She offered the excuse, "He is raising a family and needs it worse than I do", but the real reason was her lack of self-confidence. This same lack of self-confidence forced another woman to refuse a potentially prestigious assignment, one that would have opened the door to a directorship in a new, permanent, in-house training department. A man got the job and became quite successful by using most of the woman's ideas.
Be prepared! When your boss or your superiors offer a promotion, they want you to accept. They wouldn't offer if they weren't convinced of your abilities and qualifications. When these important stepping stones come your way, take them, but don't rest; push for the next promotion and the next. People and companies want you to succeed.
Claim What Is Rightfully Yours
Similarly, I have further witnessed women stepping aside to let men steal their opportunities, their thoughts and their ideas, because they lacked the mental fortitude to challenge the man and claim what was rightfully theirs. Don't give up your opportunities! Don't step aside to the intimidating appearance and aggressive behavior of any man, especially if it is because you are a woman and you may feel inadequate.
Become innovative. Find the need for your abilities, experience, great personality and other positive qualifications and present them to your boss or even his boss. Good leaders and companies like this. It convinces them that the atmosphere in the workplace is good and that they are motivating people to want to get ahead.
More than anything, when that opportunity comes knocking, you must say yes to it, especially when your heart and spirit want you to say yes. Don't question your abilities or manufacture excuses to refuse and don't look for an easier alternative, either; take the assignment.
Don't let any man take away your progress, and don't let any supervisor or boss prove his point about the inflexibility of career women by your failure to respond positively. When in doubt about a promotion or new assignment, be quick to take the risk. You will thank yourself tenfold later.
I Am Needed & The Time Is Now
Keep this thought in mind, "I am needed and the time is ripe." You will constantly need this motivation as you face unanswered questions week after week, month after month, and you will need it during the times when you try to do your best and receive little or no attention.
Success doesn't come easy for anyone and for some it seems like an endless journey. Women are not immune to this feeling. Always remember, you have an added challenge because you are overcoming the inertia of thousands of years of repression. Don't give up! Some men, like me, are just waiting and hoping you will succeed, and we know that we really do need YOU.
The Boss Should Be A Woman
by Jack McAllen.
Reprinted with permission of the publisher, Blue Dolphin Publishing, P.O. Box 1920, Nevada City, CA 95959.-?www.bluedolphinpublishing.com
About The Author
Jack McAllen has spent 44 years in retail management. He urges all women to challenge and overcome the "glass ceiling" in the workplace and in themselves.