All Articles Tagged "Career"

“Be The Boss” Contest Entry: Tracey Woods

August 31st, 2015 - By jade
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“Be The Boss” Contestant Tracey Woods is a 47-year-old philanthropist from Memphis, Tennessee, who makes it her life’s work to give back to the community in which she lives. Check out her video entrey above and for more info on how you can nominate a woman you know to “Be the Boss” and win a makeover courtesy of Strength of Nature, click here.

When Craigslist Isn’t Getting It: Creative Ways To Find A Job

August 25th, 2015 - By Meg Butler
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Derek Gee/Buffalo News

Derek Gee/Buffalo News

Did you hear about the woman who handed her resume out on the street? When the job market gets tough, it’s time to think outside of the box to get noticed. Check out these creative ways to find a job when it feels like no one is hiring and nothing else is working.

Enter Our “Be The Boss” Contest For A Chance To Win A Free Makeover From Strength Of Nature

August 24th, 2015 - By Madame Noire
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Are you a woman who's about her business or know someone who is? We want to hear from you!

MadameNoire is providing two women a chance to win a makeover by Strength of Nature for sharing their story of their journey to becoming a boss with us. To get your name in the running, upload a video of yourself or a family or friend you want to nominate to Facebook or Instagram explaining how this person is a boss why they should be picked for the makeover and be sure to use #BeTheBossMN hashtag. Then send an email with the following:

- subject headline: #BeTheBossMN Contest Entry
- Link to your video on FB/Instagram
- headshot of the person nominated
- Full name
- Age
- Location
- A short paragraph explaining why the nominee should win the makeover

Check out the video above for more details and good luck!

Is There Such A Thing As Being Too Pretty For Your Job? How Looks Affect Advancement In The Workplace

August 1st, 2015 - By Brooke Dean
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When searching for a job or looking to get a promotion from your current position, one would think experience, talent, drive or a certain skill set would be the determining factor in landing that dream job or obtaining that corner office. But have you ever considered what other factors may come into play when hiring managers are looking to fill coveted roles or promote a current employee? Sure, attitude and “likability” are also characteristics that are desirable when considering candidates, but what about personal appearance and attractiveness? Seems superficial, yes, but according to research how you look may be the main factor in determining whether or not you beat out someone else for that special gig you’ve been pining over.

It’s no secret that attractive people tend to get hired more often than their less attractive competition. But for women, how they look is a bigger deal when discussing advance ability and hiring when compared to their male counterparts. Skinny women, or those who are in shape, tend to get the call back, while it is reported that overweight women are often overlooked. According to a study conducted by NYU sociologist Dalton Conley and NYU graduate student Rebecca Glauber, a woman’s weight gain results in a decrease in both her income level and job prestige, while their male counterparts remain unaffected. While I never considered myself obese, after I lost 30 pounds in my office version of The Biggest Loser, I did notice that my coworkers and supervisors looked at me differently–and not just because my waistline was smaller. It was as if they had more respect for me; and if I could show that type of dedication to my health, then surely I could show that same dedication and hard work on the job. At least that was the perception anyway.

Another study found that women who wear makeup were considered more competent than women who wore little or no makeup; and while that seems like a trivial reason to hire or promote someone, subliminal cues like judging how a woman looks has a bigger impact on decision-making than most tend to admit or even realize. Even if a hiring manager feels he or she is choosing someone based on ability, how a person looks–particularly a woman–may have a subconscious baring on if they favor one candidate over another.

However, if you are “overly” attractive, how you look could backfire on you as well. Studies have also shown that if a woman is considered “too beautiful,” she may also be considered incompetent because the perception is that she’s gotten far because of her looks, and not because of her intelligence or expertise in her field. My last boss was a brilliant woman who always got to work before everyone else and was the last to leave. Her Type-A personality drove me nuts sometimes, but she was about her business. Not to mention, she was also drop dead gorgeous. Even still, she never accepted a compliment well unless it had to do with her work performance. She always mentored me to be the smartest one in the room and to go above and beyond every single day. You’d think someone with her drive would be running the show, but she was passed over time and time again for a promotion by her female bosses, while other less qualified and less beautiful women got the job. It wasn’t until her boss was replaced by a man that she was finally promoted to Senior Vice President. One could speculate as to why she was passed over so many times, but it is my opinion that her female bosses were threatened by her looks and her intelligence and refused to advance her.

In order to be taken more seriously or as not to appear inexperienced by their peers, supervisors or clients, some women try to downplay their good looks or youthful appearance. Just as my own personal story exhibits, if a hiring manager is a woman, jealousy may play a part in if she decides to hire a woman she deems “more beautiful” than she is, flexing her authority to keep another woman from moving up– a form of discrimination not as easily identifiable. And if the woman is seen as “sexy,” she might not get hired because one wouldn’t her to become a “distraction” to her male colleagues. So while being considered beautiful and smart would usually be viewed as a good thing, a woman’s beauty can also be a double-edged sword.

Seemingly, being attractive is a bonus when it comes to advancing in the workplace, just as long as you’re not “too beautiful.” While most of us can’t help what we look like, we can do things to make ourselves more attractive in our professions without appearing incompetent or threatening. It’s a matter of balance and knowing your industry and work environment, while branding yourself correctly and strategically so that you not only look good, but look the part as well. There is a way to be attractive, yet professional, beautiful, yet capable. That means no sexy, provocative or tight clothing. No excessive makeup and making sure all of your social media, if public, is representative of an educated, powerful and professional woman. That means no sexy selfies on your LinkedIn profile. Many of these things should go without saying, but you’d be surprised.

At the end of the day, what we all should be doing is dressing for the job we want, and presenting ourselves in a positive manner. You may not be able to change your face or your weight overnight, but you don’t have to be “America’s Next Top Model” to get that job or promotion either. By dressing appropriately, making sure your hair is done, makeup is applied naturally (if you decide to wear it), and truly putting effort into your appearance, all of your other qualities like your intelligence, winning personality and work ethic will have a chance to shine through. Don’t be afraid to be the total package, now go get that job!

Taking Your Kid To Work: What Your Office Is Really Thinking

July 15th, 2015 - By Rich
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As parents, we’ve all been there. That day when there is no alternative. School’s closed, or it’s summertime, or the nanny called in sick. You’ve got to get to work. Your kids can’t stay home alone. You’re out of sick days. You’re needed in the office and you have no other options. So what do you do? You’re taking your kid to work with you.


Probably a bad move. Occasionally, it seems like the only scenario. Everyone in the office loves your kid, right? Think again. Bringing your kid to work with you is a privilege, and if you can get away with it, then it shouldn’t be abused. It’s more like a personal day. You’ve only got two times in a year before you exhaust this option, so use the time wisely. After two or three times, your job starts to see it as a weekly or monthly thing, even if it’s not.


Trust me, I’ve been there. Being a female in a mostly male work environment for many years showed me the light. We spent late nights in the office and I was one of only two mothers on a staff of like 20. My daughter was young at the time and I paid for a full-time school and a full-time nanny after hours. Still, there were times when I just didn’t have an alternative so I brought her to work with me. On average, it was as frequent as two or three times a month, but then again, I was there around the clock. It may seem like a lot of times for a kid to come through, but to me, it was infrequent, considering I damn near lived in that office. It depends on who is telling the story though because eventually, I started to hear complaints that I brought her to work “all the time.” I was mortified.


Different offices have different policies when it comes to having your kids around. Some are extremely strict due to insurance reasons, and if you have kids, you should have a conversation with your company’s Human Resources office before ever bringing them up there with you just to be sure you aren’t violating any company policy. After I left the magazine, I held down a few more jobs where I rarely ever brought my kids to work. I found myself to be more productive without them around. To be honest, if I didn’t have an alternative means of childcare, I would either take the day off, or work remotely, if they allowed me to. Unless it’s “Take Your Sons and Daughters To Work Day” in April, chances are no one really wants to see your kids in the office—especially if they are young (under age six). The truth of the matter is, they’re noisy, they require lots of attention, and they can be distracting to co-workers. Instead, be prepared with three or four back up plans in the event that your usual childcare plans fall through.


Of course, the rules are different for children as they get older. If your child can stay occupied independently, then it probably isn’t as big as a deal. Those that can jump on an iPad for a few hours (not that this is good) will probably know enough to stay out of the way. If they’re old enough to sit in the conference room without having to be checked on every 10 minutes, then it is probably fine. But if they’re the type that run around the office, whine when they are hungry, and use the word “Mom” in every three sentences, the workplace is not a place for them.


Your job won’t admit it, but they ain’t feeling it. Your boss hates it, and he or she probably isn’t telling you because they don’t want to seem like the boss that doesn’t understand work/life balance. But unless they have their own family, they probably don’t. Remember, the goal here is for us to create a world where companies actually want to hire us mothers. So we must disguise ourselves.

How To Get Hired When You Have Next To No Experience

June 19th, 2015 - By Meg Butler
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Image Source: Shutterstock

Image Source: Shutterstock

It’s a classic catch 22: you need experience to get the job, but you need a job to get experience. Thankfully, these tips for getting hired when you have little experience can help you break the cycle.

I Hate Mondays: 20 Inspiring Quotes for Curving The Early Week Blues

June 1st, 2015 - By Rich
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Today we celebrate two beginnings, the beginning of the month as well as the beginning of the week! It’s important to remember that with both of these new starts this season we should begin to manifest new perspectives! Try and beat the monday blues by motivating yourself! Forget coffee, let’s get serious about giving ourselves a natural boost with these 20 inspirational quotes for curving the early week blues!

I Hate Mondays: 20 Inspiring Quotes for Curving the Early Week Blues

Main image, Shutterstock

The “I” Word: Are You “Too Independent” For Love?

April 16th, 2015 - By Deja Jones
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Should Love Be 'Postponed'


As a woman in my early twenties, I work part-time for an education non-profit, freelance as a writer, and I work around the clock to build my own brand as an entrepreneur. It leaves very little room for social activities, except on the weekends. So when it comes to dating and relationships, I often find myself exhausted by the idea of it all. I spent six years in a relationship building with someone and unintentionally neglecting myself, and now as a single woman, I find myself torn between focusing on my career and looking for love.

“How are you going to be able to date with everything you have going on?”

“You don’t seem like you need a man.”

“Is that why you’re single?”

“When will you ever have time for me?”

“You don’t seem like you’re ready for a relationship.”

These are some of the questions and concerns some men have when it comes to women who are branded as being “too independent.” It’s almost like being branded with the scarlet letter. But Black women have always been independent. We’ve been the maids working double shifts to earn extra wages so that we can come home and take care of our family, and we’ve been one-half of a power couple where both parties share equal responsibility both in work and in the household. We’ve done it all, but most of the time, we’ve done it all without much help.

So with that in mind, I can’t help but give a slow eye roll when in 2015 we as women are still being fed that we can’t have it all. The career, love, and the family. Men have rarely had to give up their independence or been forced to choose between family and career, but it seems to be the binary constantly thrown at women. So why are women who are independent stigmatized as not being datable?

After surveying several men, I can’t say that I was surprised by some of the responses I received. Some said that independent women are not datable because of their unwillingness to be submissive. Most of the men I talked to felt that independent women won’t allow them to play their role as men because they are too self-reliant and don’t seem to have a need for men. To be dependent is to be vulnerable, and to them, independent women aren’t interested in that. Men are raised to be the protectors of their family and when a woman gives off the energy and attitude that she doesn’t need them it creates an imbalance in gender roles and dynamics. But on the flipside, there were some men who said they would love to have a woman who is self-sufficient and independent. Some even went as far as to say that they want a woman to take care of them so they wouldn’t even mind if she made more money…

As single men and women, naturally we should want and be able to take care of ourselves. We should be financially, emotionally, and physically healthy before trying to build with anyone. So why is it that women are criticized when they have their stuff together on their own and want a man to have it all together too?

After surveying different women at different stages in their careers, most women with a solid, five-figure salary and career told me they wanted men who had equal or more than them. They all claimed they wanted an interdependent relationship where they shared an equal partnership with their men. So when men say they want a woman to work as many hours as them and still be a homemaker after hours, these ladies weren’t for it. Why can’t he come home and cook too?

For some women, they believe the notion of being too independent to date is an idea created by men to retain whatever bit of machoism they can in a society where women are starting to dominate in most industries. “Date someone who’s manlier” was the suggestion that one woman gave.

Women who are strong, successful and independent should and tend to naturally aspire to be with men who share similar qualities, but on a much higher level. Is she too independent for love? No. She just hasn’t found a man worth compromising for yet, or who will compromise for her. When a woman truly finds herself in love, and the right man, she will have no problem being submissive.

A Moment Of Faith: How Good Friday & Easter Inspire Me Professionally

April 3rd, 2015 - By Tanvier Peart
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Black (Christian) woman praying


“‘It is finished.’ With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit,” – John 19:30

Like many Christians across the world, I celebrate Holy Week, which leads believers to Good Friday and Easter or Resurrection Sunday. It’s a pivotal time in our faith when our savior (Jesus Christ) paid the ultimate sacrifice so that others might live both here on Earth and eternally. While I do my best to keep these sentiments in my heart throughout the year, there’s something powerful about these next few days that speak to my heart. As cheesy as it sounds, it makes me want to be a better person.

It’s so easy to set a goal to be nicer and more loving to your family and friends. For the most part, it shouldn’t be that hard. Yet I think about my professional life and career circle. Are elements of my faith reflected in what I do? Please don’t misunderstand, I by no means am trying to promote smacking folks over the head with a Bible and tossing holy water around the workplace. I’m simply talking about the basics of being a kindhearted individual.

Are you someone who doesn’t hold the transgressions of others against them because you too have fallen short at some point? Forgiveness is a very tough concept to grasp as many of us (I’ll raise my hand) have been guilty of holding on to grudges that only damage ourselves in the long run. While I’m not perfect, my faith does challenge me to let go of past hurts both in and out of the boardroom. After all, how can I become a better version of myself when I’m still holding someone to something they did months or even years ago? Does that sound like a great way to be productive? I don’t think so.

Thinking about the events leading up to Good Friday and Easter really have me at a standstill. Do I focus on the needs of others in my everyday life the same way Jesus thought of those whom he never met? Can I lay down the drama and wipe the slate clean as everyone–including myself–deserves a second chance at getting it right? Granted, I’m not Jesus, but the Word does say, “Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us.”

Whether you’re a “die hard” Jesus fan, someone who enjoys the CEO life (Christian and Easter only), or willing to entertain ideas of love and peace, I think it’s good to take time to reflect over your life. Good Friday and Easter inspire me to be a nicer and more giving person.

Has your faith challenged you to take are hard look at yourself and correct areas that are in desperate need of improvement? It takes a mature person to admit their shortcomings and more importantly, put action behind their intentions. At least for me, I believe who I am as a career woman is largely influenced by my faith. It’s a part of me, directs my sails to dream big and helps govern my actions towards others.

10 Signs Your Job Is Wreaking Havoc On Your Emotional Well-Being

April 3rd, 2015 - By Taylor Gordon
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Taking care of your mental health should always be a top priority. And a horrible work situation has the potential to put you in an emotional rut that’s difficult to overcome, especially if you’re predisposed to mental illness. Here are signs that work is affecting your psychological well-being negatively and it’s time to think about whether your job is worth your sanity.