#11 - Tips for Speaking Up

*Wow*  What an emotional weekend!  I'm still high off the energy of watching women (and men) all over the world come together to speak up and fight for equality.

After speaking to an incredible group of women on how to find their purpose and advocate for a career they love, I quickly headed to the Women's March here in Los Angeles.  Within minutes I came across a sign that simply stated: A Girl Should Be Two Things.  What She Wants and Who She Wants!

This is everything to me!  

It's Why I Fight...

I fight every day to help my clients step into their purpose and be who they truly want to be!  It's why I'm fighting to ensure my daughter has every opportunity to achieve her dreams.

And It's Why I'm Thankful. 

This article ( You are Not Equal.  I'm Sorry.) was circling my Facebook feed and it really spoke to me.  If you have 5 minutes, read it!  I'm thankful to all of the women who have been fighting for all of us and for all of us who continue to fight every day for everyone to be equal.  

So now that the Women's March is over, how do we continue speaking up, especially at work?  


  • WHEN YOU SEE SOMETHING SAY SOMETHING: Thank you NYC MTA for permanently ingraining that into our heads!  But in all seriousness - it's a great mantra.  Whether it a small situation or severe issue (e.g. sexual harassment).  Always say something.  Here is a simple example:  A client just had a situation where her Work From Home request denied the same week when another co-workers request was granted.  She could have stayed quiet and frustrated, but instead, she asked for a few minutes of her manager's time, shared her observation and asked why?  There was a reason and in the end, the decision stood but instead of being frustrated and disengaged she now knows her manager was being reasonable and fair!
  • DON'T JUST LET THE JOKE GO:  This one is honestly the most difficult for me.  For many years, I would just let inappropriate comments and jokes just whiz past me.  Sticks and stone may break my bones, but words will never hurt me!  Remember that one?  Look it's awkward.  It's your friend or your colleague or maybe a superior even, and it can be scary.  But instead of pretending to laugh, simply say: That's not funny to me, please stop.  Now you can take this one deeper and get into a conversation about why or that can simply be enough!  Your choice!
  • SUPPORT OTHER WOMEN: Sometimes there is a bit of a mentality of "if I had to suffer through, so do you."  But we are all in this together.  So when a women colleague has a great idea and is interrupted in the meeting, don't let it go.  Speak up and ensure she gets to finish.  Or perhaps, find a junior female member of your team and provide some leadership and mentorship.  We are building upon the past success of the women before us and so let's make it a little easier for those coming along next!



Mary Beth Ferrante