You are a Woman and Your Opinion Doesn’t Matter

In oil and gas industry, the room is often disproportionately male and the few women in the room are generally stereotyped to a receptionist or secretarial role.

More women have slowly been integrating into this industry, but often their voices remain hushed.

Unfortunately, the silence is generally self-inflicted.

The lie that ‘as women, our opinion doesn’t matter’ has been etched in our minds and now we have fallen into the trap.

I started my career in the oil and gas industry and fell into the black hole of silence, but thankfully I’ve managed to climb out. Here are my 3 golden tips to shake the walls with your roar, make yourself the most important person in the room, and to remind yourself that hard work pays off regardless of gender.

Tip 1. Exude Confidence

This is more than wearing the perfect outfit, although it helps, it’s about “Portraying yourself in a positive, professional, and confident manner [which] will help you overcome any skepticism that you may encounter.” as Gail Mandel wrote in Fortune.

Always remember to stand straight, hold yourself to a higher standard, dress the part, and act like you own it.

A quick fix to give an air of confidence is to start with a strong handshake. Reevaluate your handshake with a friend and double check that it’s strong.

Tip 2. Have a Mission

People don’t dress up to stay in bed, they dress up to go to an event.

Your confidence must be worn proudly and now you need to have a plan in mind.If your goal is the event to which you will attend, where would you go?

The easiest way to get started is to get started.

Write down where you want to get and then work back to how you can get there. If the CEO of the company is your target, look at past CEOs and learn from them. Find positive role models and emulate those great people.

Simply put, have a mission and write it down.

Tip one and two, you might think, don’t involve my voice. How is this helping me shake the walls with my roar?

Tip 3. Ask Bold Questions

Asking straightforward questions shows that you know what you want.

Moreover, it shows that you’re headed somewhere. With your goal in mind, asking questions is vital to getting there.

By being confident in yourself, you will find that asking daring questions will come easier than before.

Ask questions regarding current practices, ask to take more responsibilities, and ask more questions.

When you start to poke holes at the status quo, your voice will be shaking things up. Asking for additional responsibilities will prove you can take and deserve more.

Bonus Tip: When simply asking for more responsibilities isn’t cutting it, try the following tip.

Sit in the direct line of sight of the decision maker in the room. By sitting in the line of fire, your odds of getting an assignment increase. Use this to your advantage. Accept the challenges and make them your own.