Does the spotlight shine on you? Should it?

We all want to be noticed and appreciated.  Doing good work isn’t always enough, so how can you get the spotlight to shine on you? It turns out the better question to ask is – should the spotlight shine on you?

For women in particular this can be a very vexing problem in the workplace.  HR Florida review posted a really great article on 3 reasons the spotlight doesn’t shine on you.

The authors, 2 men, have the following advice:

1st  - Did you make a difference that other people love? It’s apparently not enough to do good work. That is expected. You need to do work that helps other people.  I agree with this in principle, but as any woman can tell you – this can work great for men, but women, don’t always get credit for the things we do, probably because - it’s expected.

2nd You need to shine the spotlight on other people.  This one I do agree with. When you shine your light on other people, you not only spread the love around, you also become indispensable as an opinion maker. As the author’s point out – in the workplace, helping management see the good work of others, helps the managers SEE you! You are the link. So don’t be afraid to be the person who get’s people’s attention, not for yourself but for others.

3rd  - if you only want the spotlight to be in the spotlight – you don’t deserve the spotlight  Oh my goodness – I love this advice the best!  Yes!!!!!! We have too much craving of fame for the sake of fame. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t seek out the spotlight. It just means why you are seeking the spotlight matters to whether or not the spotlight helps you or hurts you.

When you seek the spotlight not for yourself but so that you can do more good you are seeking it so that you can maximize the good that is being done and for other people!  This ties into the 2nd bit of advice – shine the light on others.

Women's Credibility Gap

We women have a problem. If we do good work that people love, it’s expected of us. So we aren’t given credit for it. We are also discouraged from seeking credit because it makes us look power hungry.  Especially when it looks like we are seeking the spotlight to just be in the spotlight.

But … we can use this to our advantage by turning this around a little bit. In order to be as effective as you can be so that you can do great work that really makes a positive difference, you need to get credit for it because – that credibility gives you greater influence so that you can get more done.  The seeking of credit isn’t to make yourself bigger, it’s in the service of your goal of service.

When we shine the light, not on ourselves but on the people whose work we are helping or whose lives we are changing, we end up in the spotlight. Not because we were seeking it for ourselves, but because we sought it out in service of a cause that makes a real difference in real people’s lives or work.

Will you still get pushback for trying to get the credit you deserve? Of course, but here’s the thing. Doing good for the sake of doing good feels REALLY good.  Helping others is great motivation, it doesn’t mean you have to subjugate yourself to other people. Just help raise other people up and raise yourself up so that you can raise other people up more effectively. If you do this, enough people will recognize you for your good work and you can happily ignore the haters who were going to hate anyway.

Credit = Credibility

Remember, getting credit is getting credibility. Credibility means you have more power to be more effective at what you do. You get credibility not by focusing on building up yourself, but by building up others. Being that person whose opinion is credible because – you aren’t self-serving.

Go get ‘em girls.

And men – if you are reading this – PLEASE start noticing the good work that women do and stop taking us for granted.  Be the guy who gains credibility by putting the spotlight on the women who should be getting the credit!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...