marissa mayer

Marissa Mayer didn’t become the CEO of Yahoo! by apologizing in the workplace or shying away from challenges. Image: Giorgio Montersino via Flickr CC

Every girl has been told over and over again to “lean in,” and that assertiveness is crucial in the workplace. The good news is that this kind of confidence is a learned skill and with small changes, you will soon see how they make your workday better. Communication will become much smoother for you and conflict will become less intimidating.

Do not ever apologize for doing your job. Women in general need to stop apologizing so much, unless you have hurt someone or failed to do something you gave your word on. You are pressing someone on a deadline? That is your job and not a scenario you need to apologize for, ever.

Do not hesitate to speak up or take on a challenge in the workplace. Ask yourself what is the worst that could happen and what is the best that could happen? If you stumble over your words or can’t get your point across, is it really the end of the world?

Do not wait for perfection. Women are more socially conscious than men in general. We often will think that people judge us personally rather than how they will judge our work. That’s why sometimes we don’t jump into the conversation or email chain, unless we have exactly the perfect thing to say. Remember that you do not have to have a fully fleshed-out plan before you give your input. Keeping these things in mind will help with your confidence in the workplace.

Remember why you are there. No one is just keeping you on the books to do you a favor. You are there because you add tremendous value to your team. You are not valued for the times you hold back but for all the times you add value. You have ideas and a point of view that are invaluable to your team and workplace.