I've "Leaned In" ... Now What?

Jan 09, 2018

In the five years, since Sheryl Sandberg’s book, “Lean In” was released, millions of women have “leaned in”. We have taken a seat at the conference table. We have spoken up, so our voice and opinion could be heard. We have raised our hand and taken on more visible projects. The question to ask ourselves, is why are we doing it? What's our purpose and goal?

Am I “leaning in” to get recognized and promoted? Am I “leaning in” for a new opportunity? Something else?

If you look at the advice, as a career strategy and tactics for women, then we must ask ourselves the obvious question - what is our personal end-goal? Once you know what your end-goal is, it is easier to evaluate if your strategy and tactics are working. 

Let me tell you about Jessica.  Jessica wanted to get promoted and be the head of PR for her company. She took on more visible projects and a lot of extra work, hoping that it would be recognized and rewarded. She “leaned in”. The problem was there was only one head of PR role in her company, and her boss wasn’t going to be leaving anytime soon. Also, Jessica became so busy with all the extra work, that she had very little time for networking and staying in touch. Two years later, all she had to show for her work was a few “thank you, great job” comments from her boss. She was burnt out and no closer to her end goal of becoming the head of PR. If Jessica had stepped back and truly thought about her end-goal, she might have recognized sooner that she needed to look for that opportunity in a new company. She would have realized that spending time nurturing her network, not taking on a ton of extra work was a better approach to get her closer to her goal.

You need to know what your end-goal is. You need to evaluate your strategy and tactics.

Don’t just “lean in” – “lean in” with a purpose!

If you enjoyed this post and want to learn more, check out NonstopWomen, dedicated to helping women manage their work and life while maintaining their sanity. Subscribe and get a free copy of my new book, “Career Catalyst: 9 Drivers of Career Success and Fulfillment”. You can also connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

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