In our culture, the word "ambitious" is sometimes seen as a dirty word—especially when used in reference to a woman. Often, ambitious men are seen as go-getters, while ambitious women are seen as catty, spiteful and arrogant. In reality, Debra Condren says "ambition" is a quality that should be celebrated—it's a willingness to strive, a drive to rise to a higher level and a desire for wealth. Jean talks with Debra, author of amBITCHous
, about how you can take back your ambitions and feel good about it. How to Be Ambitious:
- Too often, we buy into the cultural idea that if we admit our professional goals, our personal life will suffer. In reality, we can be ambitious without compromising our integrity and ethics, Debra says.
- Earn your worth. First, find out what the market can bear, then charge in the upper two-thirds of that amount.
- Take the credit you deserve to get more power and recognition, Debra says. If you're constantly giving away the credit, other people will pass you by and take away all the plum opportunities.
- Just say thank you. If someone is praising your work, saying thank you is a way of accepting their compliments, while still feeling humble.
- If a client e-mails you a complementary note, feel free to forward it on to your boss with a simple "FYI" as the subject, Debra says.
- Be willing to fight for yourself. If you come to the negotiating table, negotiate your raise until you get what you are worth.