The Woman in the Arena
I’m claiming 2018 as the year of the woman. I’m a fan of women. In fact, I’m pro-woman. Now let me be clear. Being pro-woman does not mean I am anti-man. No, no, no and no. Quite the contrary. But until we have more woman CEO’s, startups, innovators, and presidents, I’m going to rock with my sisters. Besides, I am more than capable of being pro-woman and a fan of men at the same time. I have to, I’m a woman. And that’s what we do.
Have you ever asked yourself why in 2018, women do not have stronger representation at the top? I mean, it’s not like women are not out there with ideas, perseverance, tenacity, and fearlessness. I’ve read a lot about unconscious bias and the beliefs that women do not have what it takes to be tough negotiators and risk-takers. Poppycock. All things held equal, Bob knows doggone well that when he hires Bill over Sarah, he is consciously choosing a man over a woman.
So, what’s the deal? I don’t proclaim to be an expert in this area. But as a woman, I’ve been overlooked, talked over, had my ideas stolen, and presented as his. The nerve. What’s worse…I let him. What’s even more absurd…other women in the room sat idly by while it happened. And I’ve been guilty of the same. Then we sit back and watch while our male counterparts get promoted, rich, and more entrenched in the good ole boys club.
That’s why in 2018, I say we call out the haters and sayers of “NOT”! There are a lot of great thought leaders and innovators that are women. Simply, women are dope! As women, we imagine what others cannot. We explore while others dare not. We celebrate failures to discover the not. We take risks while others do not. We challenge status quos and whatnot.
What does that mean?
Be your sister’s keeper
If you see something, say something. Together, let’s be deliberate and call out the behavior of mansplaining, idea thievery, and any dismissive comments. This is not in any way shape or form playing the victim. This is about taking ownership and accountability for what we want to change. And for my brothers, I’m inviting you to do the same.
Get in the arena
My sisters, I’m talking to you. Sidelines are for cheerleaders (proud cheerleader for Montbello Warriors, Class of 1988, Denver, Colorado and an avid watcher of Dallas Cowboy Cheerleader Making the Team). While we need cheerleaders, the action is in the arena. Investors and board chairs are in the stadium looking at what is happening on the field. If we want our shot, we have to get in the arena!
“It is often men who are counted; not the women who support the man if he stumbles, or points out where the doer of deeds could have been done better. The credit often belongs to the man who is actually the face in the arena, when it is in fact the woman’s face that is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly, often privately and humbly; who errs, who comes up short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions and sacrifices; who spends herself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement while she looks in, and who at the worst, if she fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that her place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat. Robin Glasco or maybe Theodore Roosevelt