Being Authentically YOU at Work

There’s a quote by Simon Sinek that says “If you’re different at work than you are at home, in one of those two places you’re lying.” And we couldn’t agree more!

It’s so important to work in a place that allows you to completely be yourself at work. It takes a lot of energy to be someone different, and while this might be okay in the short-term, it’s definitely not going to be sustainable in the long-term. You’re going to get worn down eventually and start looking for a different role.

Now, of course every single position is going to require stepping out of your comfort zone from time-to-time. That’s how we grow. We’re not talking about making yourself uncomfortable in order to be better. We’re talking about if you change your personality while you’re at work. You should never have to change who you are, especially when you spend so much of your time at work.

First off, how do you go about making sure when you’re searching for a new job that the environment is going to allow you to be yourself and thrive?

You have to really pay attention during the interview process, while also taking a deep dive into yourself. If you’re an extrovert who gets energy by being around people, maybe you shouldn’t work in a place that has high cubicle walls and doesn’t promote collaboration. If you’re a person that does your best work in an uninterrupted routine, don’t take a job that involves a lot of varied schedules and last-minute changes in plan.

You’re able to truly be yourself when you’re in an environment that aligns with your natural tendencies. So first, you have to determine what environment you thrive in, and then search for that fit in the interview process. Ask questions of the interviewer(s) that will help you qualify the opportunity to see if it aligns.

So then, what do you do if you’re currently in a role where you don’t feel comfortable being yourself?

You need to start by determining if the problem is internal or external. Are you concerned that your coworkers will think you’re weird? Are you worried that asking for some schedule flexibility in order to take your kids to school will make you appear not fully invested in your job? Are you stressed that being direct with a coworker will cause them to gossip about you at the water cooler? All of these scenarios are centered on being concerned about how SOMEONE ELSE perceives you. If you’re afraid to be yourself because of how someone else is going to judge you, there’s not a problem with the job or environment – you need to take a deep look inside yourself because you’re letting other people’s possible opinions of you affect how you live your life.

But maybe you can’t be yourself at work, not because of your own lack of confidence, but because of the inherent environment. If the role or company culture simply doesn’t allow you to do your best work, then there’s a problem with the job itself and it might be time to look for a new opportunity.

At the end of the day, we’re able to be authentically ourselves no matter where we are when we’re in an environment that supports our natural personality and when we stop caring about other people’s opinions and perceptions. If you’re able to find the self-confidence to be who you are meant to be, while also being in a work environment that enhances that, you’ll never have a problem with showing up as anyone less than yourself.

By Allison Walke, Talent Acquisition & Onboarding

Overcoming Objections & Rejections

You interview for your dream job, only to hear back that the company has decided to go in a different direction. You find an ideal prospect, only to come in above their budget and lose the sale. You go on a great date, only to have your follow up texts go unanswered. You put in a bid on a house, only to have a counter-offer come back too high.

Objections and rejections are a part of life. We all experience them – in both our personal and professional lives – so why do we try and hide them? Why do we not want anyone else to hear our stories of being rejected? And how do we overcome that rejection, take it in stride, and stay motivated to keep working towards our goal?

Obviously, no one likes failing, and rejection feels an awful lot like failure. Failure is really a part of success. You can learn from your mistakes and make better decisions in the future. But while this is all true, cliche statements about how failure can open new and better doors are probably not really going to help pull you out of a slump when you’ve been cold calling all day and have yet another prospect hang up on you.

So how can you stay motivated to apply for another job, contact another prospect, go on yet another date, or walk through one more house?

The key is knowing what motivates you. Your motivation to achieve that end goal has to be stronger than your fear of being rejected, or else you’re never going to try again. If you don’t really care about that end goal, then going through any setback or disappointment – no matter how small – is going to end with you handing in the towel.

If a setback doesn’t motivate you to try even harder next time, then you really need to take a step back and reflect on your motivation. Really think about why you aren’t motivated to keep going. Don’t be afraid to be honest with yourself. Wanting to abandon a goal because it seems “too hard” isn’t the real root of your problem. There’s a deeper reason why you aren’t willing to put in the work. Because if you really cared about something, you’d be willing to put in whatever you had to do to make it happen.

You may need to force yourself to think not about the possible consequences of trying and failing, but instead the possible consequences of never even trying in the first place. What could happen if you never made the leap to try again? Well, you might be stuck in the same dead end job the rest of your life. You might never make another sale or go on another date. You’ll stay living in the same too-small house. Sure, you could avoid all possibility of rejection by never stepping out of your comfort zone, but doing that also avoids all possibility of success. And are you really willing to throw success away just because there’s a chance you’ll face an objection along the way?

So the next time you reach a point where you’re not sure you have it in you to try even one more time, think instead about what motivates you and what might your life look like a year down the road if you didn’t try at all. Are you okay with being in the same spot you are today in another 365 days? Or should you face that objection again because of the possibility of achieving something better?

By Allison Walke, Talent Acquisition & Onboarding