International Women’s Day: Interview with Helen Graham
How do you define confidence, particularly in the workplace? Confidence is not pretending you have answers, but asking the right questions to define the problem and get the facts to identify solutions. How do you think the confidence gap affects women?Women usually underestimate their contribution and do not realise they need to switch communication modes according to the communication style of the listener. Do you think women’s workplace confidence has improved over the past few decades? Please explain why.Not particularly, of course with more experience comes confidence but younger women still come into the profession lacking confidence. How important have confidence and self-belief been in achieving your career goals? Please explain why.Sometimes it is necessary to fake it until it becomes second nature and becomes real. How important is mentoring, coaching and sponsorship in helping women to grow their confidence at work? Critical – the absence of mentoring meant that I did not understand the rules of the game and did not build the underpinnings of my career early enough. What can be done to ensure a woman being assertive in the workplace doesn’t negatively impact on colleagues’ perceptions of her? Integrity – with her objective demonstrably always being the business clients best interests, not a personal agenda.