It’s a New Year, but that doesn’t mean that the issues of last year just go away. Policy changes of the last year will continue to cause conversations into 2018. Our founder, Kim Bode was inspired by one of these policy changes that occurred in September. The new year will mean new challenges for business owners no matter their sex, but Kim has some advice on being a female leader as the country faces interesting times ahead.
*This post was originally published on Small Biz Musings
Back in September, the news out of D.C. was the reversal of the pay gap rule put in place by the Obama administration. After reading about it, I started thinking about women in the workforce and what it means to be a female leader in this day and age.
As much as I would like to tell you that I have never been treated differently due to my gender, I can’t.
There are situations I look back on now, as a business owner, and I know that if I was of the opposite sex the outcome would have been much different.
There were times, I would ask a male colleague to go to a meeting with me for a prospective client because I knew he would have their respect by just walking into the room. I, on the other hand, would have to earn it. They would direct questions to him and I would answer them, they thought nothing of it.
I’ve been asked to schedule appointments, take meeting notes, coordinate something with an admin, work outside the contract, have a ‘feelings’ meeting because my to-the-point communication style offended an employee of a client…I wish I was making this up. Each of these alone seems minuscule but when they all pile on top of each other, it starts to really wear on you. I have owned 8THIRTYFOUR for 10 years and have been asked questions a male business owner would never be asked.
I am proud to be a women-owned business and the opportunities that has afforded me far outweigh the negative. The lesson in all of this is that we can only control how we react to situations. Don’t let them see you sweat.
Read more musings from our fearless, female leader on her blog.