Confidence in the workplace: Insights from Linda Luman
In today’s unique business landscape offering so many variations of work from fully remote to hybrid or in-office, understanding how to be confident in all environments is key to the growth of an employee. Our Executive Vice President of Human Resources, Linda Luman, has witnessed firsthand the profound impact confidence can have on someone’s performance, job satisfaction, and overall career success. Drawing from her own experiences, Linda gave us her best advice and insights on how to foster confidence in not only yourself, but those around you.
When asked, “what does confidence mean to you”, Linda explained that the key to confidence is truly understanding who you are to the core and believing that you can do something. “Confidence is believing in yourself, having conviction in who you are, and acknowledging not only what you have accomplished but will accomplish in the future. It’s knowing that you can overcome challenges, be comfortable with speaking out and standing up for what you believe in while providing a voice that needs to be heard in a collaborative, supportive way.”
While some are naturally confident, many have to work at it. Linda learned early in her career that this was something she needed to strengthen and it has since helped her become who she is today.
“I learned to improve my confidence by working hard, gathering data, listening to others to prepare me for those times I knew I might be challenged at work. The more prepared I am, the more conviction I have and speaking out is not as hard now as it used to be. I encourage everyone to push themselves to speak up, ask thoughtful questions, and be prepared to share the data that gives you confidence. We all grow by leveraging what we’ve learned and we can’t be timid or think we are not good enough. We need to keep telling ourselves ‘I’ve got this’.”
So often, we see a lack of confidence in teammates who are new, engaged in larger groups and are afraid to speak up, or when there are leaders in the room. “Many don’t give themselves the credit for the ideas and experiences they have lived, so they remain silent. It’s not a game of perfection; we want to hear from you, we encourage it!”
Achieve’s open, collaborative, and transparent culture is designed to foster this kind of growth in our teammates. “We’ve created an amazing environment where everyone feels comfortable being themselves. You have to be comfortable in who you are and what you do while supporting everyone along the way. Don’t hold back—we want to hear your feedback and we want to feel comfortable providing it, too. We are all here to learn and grow and the more experiences we have in speaking up, the more confident we will become.”
Our culture plays a significant part in building confidence among teammates. Even with our fully remote and hybrid roles, we encourage collaboration across the organization and make every effort to help each other feel connected with company activities, employee resource groups, interest channels on Slack and anything else a teammate might need to grow.
Linda is passionate about supporting those who want to be their best selves. She’s constantly engaging with our teammates to find out what they’re truly interested in and helps them get on a path to doing what they love. Her best advice to start improving your confidence in the workplace today are these three tips:
Learn from others and share insights. Schedule time with a teammate or your manager to share ideas, ask questions and engage. The more you do this, it will feel empowering and easier to do.
Volunteer for an assignment. Interested in something? ASK! The worst thing you’ll hear is no and dabbling in new things is a great way to learn and find what you’re passionate about.
Don’t focus on what you don’t know. You have so much unique knowledge and experiences that the person next to you doesn’t. Focus on what you bring to the table and allow that to shine. You don’t have to know it all and everybody has the opportunity to learn while doing their job.
By encouraging open communication, providing feedback and collaborating with each other, you can feel empowered in the workplace and grow your career one uncomfortable step at a time. It gets easier as long as you trust yourself, your knowledge and your ability to do great things.