Have you ever met someone who you just did not like, maybe in church, at school, or at a business-networking event? Of course! So, would it be fair to say that in all likelihood there are people out there who do not like you? It’s shocking I know, but there are actually people out there who have never even spoken a word to you and they do not like you! Take a deep breath, and ladies – grab a tissue and wipe your eyes, it’s ok. Not everyone out there in the business world is going to like you, as that’s the nature of business and in fact, the nature of life.
It seems that the idea of having people not like us is a stumbling block for many women in business. We worry that if we say the wrong thing, or if we have difficult conversations that are sometimes essential, then we will not be liked. Therefore we don’t ask for the sale, we don’t speak up when we should, and we don’t take authority and own it. Instead we hope that people will “like” us enough to do business with us.
My coach reminds me often that my desire to be liked is in the way of my desire to be successful! Ouch!
Here is the cold hard truth: when we put our need to be liked first we are being selfish, self-centered and insecure. When we put the needs of others before our need to be liked, then and only then are we able to speak with truth, have authority in our expertise and lead others. No leader anywhere can lead if their first desire is to be liked. Even the bible cautions against having everyone like you, as it states in Luke 6:26, “Woe to you when all men speak well of you, for their fathers used to treat the false prophets in the same way
Ladies, we don’t need everyone to like us, instead, what we need is for people to respect our authority, to have confidence in our ability to lead. What we really want is respect for who we are and what we can accomplish. That, ladies, is something we earn when we are secure in who we are, we know the value we bring to the table and we are able to stand in our own authority. It is not given because we strive to be liked.