Archives March 2019

Professional Women at Desk Looking at Office View

Ways to Break the Glass Ceiling and Become a Leader in the Workplace

Both men and women can experience trials and tribulations in their aim to make their way to the top of the workplace hierarchy.

However, women in particular are subject to oppression and discrimination in the workplace.

Such obstacles can make it difficult for them to reach leader status ahead of their equally qualified male counterparts.

Once they do attain highly respected roles, this is referred to as breaking the glass ceiling.

Two Guys Working on Laptops

Other people who may experience discrimination include older employees, those from poorer backgrounds and ethnic minorities.

Though equality has dramatically improved over the past few decades, there is still much progress to be made.

The hierarchy within a workplace is still very male-dominated when it comes to the top positions.

So, are there any ways that women and other minorities can increase their chances of breaking the glass ceiling?

While elevating such employees into higher earning roles is a change needed in society, below are some useful strategies that will help you become a strong leader at work in the meantime:

Recognise that the Glass Ceiling Exists

To break through the glass ceiling, you must first acknowledge that it’s there.

There are some tell-tale signs that one may exist within your organisation, such as:

  • Little diversity among the top-level managers
  • Sexist, racist or other prejudice language being common across the organisation
  • Resistance to change and innovation
  • Pay gaps between male and female employees

Be Tough in Negotiations

Nothing worth having comes easy.

Experts suggest that women shouldn’t be afraid to push the boundaries when it comes to requesting work perks, benefits and bonuses.

It’s a well-known fact that women perform better academically.

They graduate higher educational institutions at higher percentages than men.

So, why are they making less money in lower level positions?

Well, males tend to be more assertive in the work environment, making them more likely to get promoted than women.

Though it may be difficult to implement this mentality in the workplace, it is still crucial to be more assertive and self-confident whenever it’s needed.

Never Underestimate Your Capabilities

If you have all the right qualifications, then you are no less worthy to be in the business than your other colleagues.

It may be that your hard work and dedication is taken for granted.

Start drawing attention to your personal strengths and skills, ensuring that management know when you are responsible for the successful completion of tasks and deals.

Don’t Be Afraid to Make Decisions

Not every decision a great leader makes is the best decision.

What demonstrates great leadership is the fact that they stepped up and made the decision in the first place.

People that tend to procrastinate and let other make the decisions that they should have made are showing signs that they don’t have what it takes to be a leader.

Stand Up for Yourself

There are some cases where you’ll be required to stand up for yourself against opposition.

For example, employers may often be reluctant to hire women because of pregnancies in the future.

They may also unfairly dismiss them for the same reason.

This is outright discrimination and can be dealt by consultation with dispute resolution lawyers.

Standing up for your rights as an employee will let your company know that you’re not a push over, and that you’re willing to fight for what you deserve.

Learn New Skills

You may wish to learn more about strategic planning, analytics and performance metrics.

Any instance where you can acquire new skills will begin to make you invaluable to the company.

Learning a new skill can also help you feel more confident and professional, equipping you with the knowledge you need to complete tasks that others may not be able to.

Build A Network You Can Learn From

Studies show that individuals with large open networks succeed at a much higher rate than those with smaller, more closed networks.

Understandably, a busy work schedule means it can be difficult to find the time to attend networking events, however, there is no doubt that these opportunities are worth pencilling in.

Practice Giving & Taking Constructive Feedback

Giving and receiving tough feedback can be a real hurdle to growth, both as manager and as an individual contributor.

However, the sooner you master digesting constructive feedback and giving it out to your colleagues, the quicker you’ll grow personally and professionally.

Don’t Be Afraid to Fail

Human error is unavoidable.

Unfortunately, certain failures by women or other minorities can be magnified and blown out of proportion.

Men are often less afraid with the prospect of dealing with possible consequences of incorrect decisions due to their position within the company.

However, if you want to break the glass ceiling you must realise that you’re not expected to be infallible.

Therefore, you need to move beyond the fear of failure. By doing so, you’ll also become more confident in your approach to certain situations.


Reading Map Whilst Driving

How to Plan for a Road Trip Around Europe

Road trips are one of the best ways to explore multiple destinations whilst getting a true feel for different cultures.

While it’s undeniably easy to get around much of Europe thanks to its extensive public transport systems, driving offers another level of freedom and flexibility that allows you to go where you want, whenever you want, as well as making the off-beaten tracks much more accessible.

Find the Right Car

The first step toward a European road trip is finding the right vehicle.

When renting a car, keep in mind that most Europeans drive manual.

If this comes as a discomfort to you then be prepared to pay more for an automatic.

Bear in mind that if you are dropping your car off at a different destination from pick-up, there will likely to be additional fees.

Preparing Your Car

Before you start driving in Europe, it is important that not only you are prepared, but that the car is too.

Carry out a thorough check of your vehicle before you embark on your trip.

There are several maintenance check you can do yourself, such as checking the oil and coolant levels of the car and testing the tread depth of your tyres.

Make sure the car’s MOT is valid throughout the course of your road trip. For extra peace of mind, you could book the car in for a service before you travel.

You car should also carry the essentials when travelling on a long journey; spare wheel, jump leads, screen was and oil.

Prior to Setting Off

Driving in the dark can lead to reduced concentration levels and fatigue so it is important that you put safety and stop for regular breaks.

Conduct some thorough research into the town and cities you will be driving through.

If you are road tripping through or around Europe, it is important to understand the diversity of each country, particularly when it comes to driving regulations and road rules.

The beauty of Europe is that you can be driving for a few hours and find yourself in a whole new region, country and culture so having the correct travel documents is essential.

If you are unsure which documents you will require, visiting an immigration solicitors or visa team prior to your road trip is a great idea.

Once you have chosen your destinations, it is a good idea to invest in a good quality road map.

Although most people use the GPS functions on their phone, you should always have a map handy just in case the battery dies.

Packing

Unlike air travel, packing for a road trip shouldn’t feel like a task of restraint.

Pack as if you are packing an overnight bag for a short stay – and then a couple extra.

Ensure everyone in the car has a spare change of clothes and clean underwear.

Toiletries can be shared and purchased so, if you forget a shampoo, don’t panic.

Pack a separate back for just the electronics and make sure everything is fully charged the night before you embark on your journey.

If you plan to go away for a prolonged period, then consider keeping valuables and precious artefacts in secure storage back home.

Many homes that are left vacant for lengthy periods are far more prone to robbery and theft.

Finding affordable and flexible secure storage is fairly cost effective and a sensible choice.

Most removal companies offer short term and long term storage options, so there should be a provider near to your home you can use before you pack up and head off abroad.

The Best Drives in Europe

If you are looking for inspiration, then here are some of the best drives in Europe.

Italy – The Amalfi Coast

This drive is along the spectacular coastline and is suitable for those that are experienced and confident when driving.

The traditional starting point if Sorrento, then following the narrow zig-zag road to Salerno.

The winding roads mean it is not for the faint-hearted, but it will make for an unforgettable experience with breath-taking views.

Germany – Route 500

This is a panoramic stretch that runs through the Black Forrest, between the towns of Freudenstadt to Baden.

It is a popular holiday route and can get busy in peak season.

Spain – San Jose to Cabo de Gata

This amazing drive showcases the very best of Spain.

It runs though one of the truly unspoilt areas of Spain in all its natural beauty in the Mediterranean.

With stunning beaches and charming towns, this is the perfect place to rest and refuel.

France – Route Napoleon

This road follows the route once taken by the legendary general as he marched from Elba to Grenoble in 1815.

The route starts in the French Riviera and runs along the bottom of the Alps.