Excerpts from an Interview with Nikki Muntz, EVP, Business Development for Publicis Health
For those that read Work Hard and Conquer the World, here is an added bonus for you on leadership tips.
Nikki believes that a push/pull approach can be a unique attribute for women. She feels that there are quite a few nuances between the genders that are worth considering for younger leaders in development.
Build Upon Your Success
First and foremost, women typically don’t go after jobs (titles or raises) unless they are 100% confident that they have the required skills already – whereas men will typically chase the new job with only a partial list. Nikki says women need to “have more of a belief that you will figure it out…and while maybe you haven’t had all of these stepping stones to get to that job, you should know you can do that job based on your past successes. So having more of that mentality instead of the list of what you haven’t done” is critical to women’s expansion in the leadership realm.
Ask for What You Deserve
In addition to that, women often don’t ask for what they want – or deserve. She says women should always go after the interview – after all, it is just a conversation. And don’t be afraid to ask for the big stuff. “You have to market your own self and sell your own self… Ask for the big title. Ask for the big money, ask more and you will probably get more than you deserve.” Nikki learned this lesson early on with a mentor who set her up for job she felt unqualified for, and helped to get her a higher title and higher salary than she had ever expected. And even though Nikki didn’t ask then, it opened up a whole new world for her for the future where she hasn’t looked back.
Don’t Take It Personally, But Do Take It
And finally, women are typically more competitive with each other and can often take difficult conversations personally. She believes that it stems from doubt (ie lack of self-confidence) which causes women to be introspective asking “did I cause that or what should I have said or done it differently?” whereas men typically take the issue to be the fault of the other person – or no fault at all – and simply move on. Women often can “overanalyze the situation and think about the role we played in whatever happened, or overemphasize the role we played in causing something” According to Nikki, we need to remember that the only thing we can control is our reaction to situations – and at the end of the day, women just “need to believe what you believe about yourself and move on. If you take into account everyone who has something negative to say about you, that’s all you would spend your time on. I think women need to have good self-assurance and strong self-awareness and move forward with that.” Certainly, it’s important to grow in every situation, but Nikki believes that it’s critical that we know ourselves so that we can recognize good feedback as good feedback and where that feedback is coming from, to be able to assess what to do with it.
And to put this all of these great insights together, work hard, believe in yourself, know your worth, and success will follow.