"Women need to stop apologizing for routine workplace events," Bloom shared with me in an email. "Ladies, every time the word 'sorry' is about to fly out of your mouth, think: Have I actually done something wrong? Or has this just become a verbal tic?" Here are three things that women often apologize for and what we can do to stop, today.
1. Our financial expectations. Ever since women entered the workforce en masse, there have been reports revealing that we make less on average than our male counterparts. Although this gap is lessening, there is still much progress to be made. Yes, talking about money can be an uncomfortable endeavor. However, if you're armed with good ammunition to back up your demand, you'll feel more confident and ready to engage in that dialogue. In other words, be clear what you want, and don't leave until you get it (well, within reason). Moreover, when in contract negotiations for any job or project, engage an advisor so that you have a second set of eyes on the details and can work out what's acceptable and what's not with someone well-versed in the small print.
2. Our physical appearance. Earlier this week I did a little tally of how long it took me to prepare for one of my other jobs, working as a national TV host on a business news network. The night before our shoot, I spent two hours with my clothing sponsor picking out my wardrobe for upcoming shoots. The next morning I spent two hours getting my hair done, two hours getting my nails done, and 30 minutes in makeup just before the show. Almost a full day, and I haven't even started my job, compared with my co-host, who literally grabbed a clean shirt and was ready to go (yes, he's male).
3. Our professional accomplishments. "Women are trained to be sensitive to everyone's feelings, not to be selfish, and not to brag," Bloom explains to me when I ask about this culture of saying sorry. "These are good traits to have. Be we also need to understand that sometimes it's not appropriate to apologize--like when we haven't done anything wrong."
From the article by Amber Mac, at Fast Company