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Why Women Must Rethink the Power and the benefits of Networking


Recently, I attended a conference that impressed me for several reasons. However, one aspect stood out: the personal barriers we as women face when seeking help from others to achieve our goals or solve problems. I am speaking about these internal saboteurs that prevent us from asking for professional recommendations, inquiring about company culture through mutual contacts, or reaching out to old classmates for career advice, for example. Is it wrong to seek such assistance? Does it make us weak? Why does this often hinder our development? Why do we, especially mothers, insist on handling everything by ourselves, no matter the cost? Is it worth it?


Sabina, one of the founders of the global brand "BY FAR," mentioned that at the Female Entrepreneurship conference that I attended. It truly resonates with me. It's a point I've shared countless times over the past 10+ years with every new employee and student I've had the chance to onboard. Why did this come to mind now and why I am sharing it on behalf of me, but also from "Working Mama" standpoint of view ? Because Sabina made a compelling point that still sticks with me: we are still have so many internal saboteurs that stop us to expand our network, ask for help, do intentional networking, look for a mentor. That's why today I aim to uncover why networking truly matters and to delve into the barriers we, as women, face when seeking help or advice that benefits not our children, not our families, but ourselves.


What does it cost us to tap into our network, to request a professional recommendation, or to ask someone we know to be our mentor? Often, we don’t even consider it and simply move on, believing it's better to handle things on our own. And if you think I haven't faced these barriers—believe me, I have. I could even write a book about it.


Here's what the introduction to my book on the subject might look like, that is insired by my real-life story. I was in the 6th grade when I received poor result on a test (equal to F) — I don't even remember the subject. But what I remember was the story and my explanation about it. When I got back at home and when my parents asked me what had happened, I burst into tears, saying that everyone else had cheated while I may failed but I failed with dignity. In my head, it was all about honor, because I didn't cheat. Fair point you would say. However my mother asked me, "Well that's true, but it's still not the best result, isn't it?" This story isn't about my childhood; it's about the fact that if the result is poor, it's poor, no matter the context. I didn't study, I wasn't as adaptable as the others, I didn't go to the teacher to ask for a second chance, I didn't ask previous students how the teacher teaches and tests, and so on, so I got a well-deserved "Poor mark."


Here's what the introduction to my book on the subject might look like: I was in the 6th grade when I received a failing grade of 2 on a test—I don't even remember the subject. At home, when asked what happened, I burst into tears, saying that everyone else had cheated while I earned the most honorable failing grade in the world. In my head, it was all about honor and integrity, but my mother asked, "Well, it's still a failing grade, isn't it?" This story isn't about my childhood; it's about the fact that if the result is poor, it's poor, no matter the context. I didn't study, I wasn't as adaptable as the others, I didn't go to the teacher to ask for a second chance, I didn't ask previous students how the teacher teaches and tests, and so I got a well-deserved "failing grade of 2."


Why I shared that story and how it connects with the topic?


It took me years to understand that achieving everything on my own is a medal I award myself only in my head, often at the cost of burnout, dissatisfaction, comparison, or poor results. I did my best to overcome this I feel I do it better now, perhaps I just grew up a bit. Yet, I still sometimes hear that voice in the back of my mind: "How can you ask for help? You should be able to handle it on your own." And yes, it's great to be self-sufficient, and the satisfaction is wonderful, but is it worth doing it for everything and at any cost, while there could be someone else out there who would be happy to land you a hand?

If you're still wondering why you're not achieving the results you aim for, here are some answers. Discover why networking is crucial, how it can benefit you, and what you need to consider as a woman uncertain about the power of networking.

➡️ Men and women have very different brains and they do network differently.


Unfortunately there are still so many stereotypes and biases about women and networking, so it's important to be aware and adapt if needed. Whether you're too direct and assertive, or too kind and helpful, you might face biases. Recognise, work on your own personal development , but don't fall into the trap to put label on yourself or set you back from networking.


➡️ Women possess a unique superpower that is frequently undervalued — the power of a "network of other women or moms who share common worries, goals, or concerns." The earlier you grasp the concept of mutual support, the quicker you will understand that opportunities around are way much more than we imagine.


➡️ Networking isn't just socialising, meeting new people or chatting — it's strategic. Take aim: attend events where you can meet someone who could assist you now or in the future with your business or career roadblocks for example. Why pass up the opportunity?


➡️ When it comes to job hunting, it's no secret that many appealing positions are filled through recommendations. Some of the roles don't even reach job search platforms for the same reasons. This has been a global trend for years, and in Bulgaria, things aren't drastically different, I feel. How will you compete in this competitive world without expanding your network of contacts?



And if I haven't quite sparked your interest yet, I'd love it if you'd at least entertain the idea or even grant yourself the "green light" to seek a mentor, explore your network, or attend that office lunch you've been avoiding. People love to lend a hand, and women are rallying behind each other more than ever. Remember, we all get a happiness boost when we help others. Don't miss out that the opportunity. Lend a hand. Seek guidance or support when needed, network, meet new people and get off to a flying start of your career or business journey! 🚀





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