What are things all professional women should know how to do by age 30, 40, 50, or 60?
So, a loooong time ago, readers had a threadjack on “things all 35-year-old professional women should know/do” — I thought it was a fun discussion, but it particularly stood out because one of my first freelanced stories, back when I was a magazine journalist (before law school), was basically this concept. I don’t remember if it was ever published or not (I vaguely remember the publication going belly-up before the article came out), but I remember making a hard sell to my editor for why all women should know how to tango.
This is why we probably shouldn’t have 22-year-olds write these things.
After all, knowing how to tango is great, but if you do NOT know how to tango, do not in any way feel deficient in your life. (In fact, for most of the things on this list, don’t feel deficient if you can’t do them yet.) I thought I’d come up with a few fun things and then turn it over to you guys — what do you think all 35-year-old professional women should know how to do? (Does your answer change if the age changes? What is it for 30, 40, 50, 60?)
ANYWAY. I thought I’d round up my top 5 — I’d love to hear yours!
Five Things All Professional Women Should Know How To Do:
#5: Sing Your Own Praises
Keep track of your own accomplishments, and don’t feel bad about raising them in meetings with bosses, clients, and others.
#4: Say Thank You / Give Genuine Praise
As you become a leader and have more say in whom you work with, being genuinely appreciative and grateful for the skills and work of those around you is an important quality to cultivate. And I don’t just mean the executive team — everyone who’s employed by your company!
#3: Know When to Admit Your Mistakes
I have a Post-it on my computer that says “Grace, Not Perfection” — because mistakes happen! Know when to to admit your mistakes — and when to ask for help. Which leads us to our next one…
You. Can. Not. Do. It. All. Yourself. Say it with me, ladies — learning how and when to delegate in your personal and professional life is super important.
The #1 Thing All Professional Women Should Know How To Do:
#1: Say No
Noooooooooooooooooo. No. It’s a single sentence! It’s ok to say no to professional and personal things. Don’t feel like you need long, wordy explanations or apologies. Just. Say. No.
Readers, over to you — what do you think are the things that all professional women should know how to do? How does your answer differ for, say, a 30-year-old and a 50-year-old?
Picture credit: Fotolia / Monkey Business.