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Why is Confidence an Essential Skill for Career Success & How to Build More Confidence in the Workplace

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Confidence is crucial for your career success and overall job satisfaction. Having low self-esteem in the workplace can greatly impact your career growth, cause you to undermine your success, and affect your earning potential.

But what does it really mean to have “confidence”?

At a TEDx Talk with Dr. Ivan Joseph, former Coach and Athletic Director at Ryerson University, beautifully defines self-confidence as:

“The ability or belief to believe in yourself to accomplish any task,

no matter the odds, no matter the difficulty, no matter the adversity.”

Meaning, self-confidence doesn’t necessarily correlate to your actual abilities. In fact, it’s more about your attitude and perception of your skills and abilities.

So, what makes confidence an essential skill for career success?

Confidence can have a huge impact on your behavior at work. Feeling skeptical? Here are a few ways more confidence in the workplace can help you grow and advance:

  • Better Communication - Confidence allows you to communicate your ideas more effectively to your team, managers, and/or clients. The most effective leaders are able to inspire others by how they communicate.
  • Higher Productivity & Performance - When you’re confident in your abilities you don’t waste time second-guessing yourself. This can allow you to take on new challenging, but manageable projects and assignments.
  • Build Trust - Decisive action and composure in elevated stress situations build trust among your colleagues and management.

Self-confidence elevates you as a leader. It’s a leadership trait that helps motivate and energize the people all around you.

70% of people lack confidence in the workplace.

For those who struggle with confidence, you are not alone. In fact, 70% of people lack confidence in the workplace.

We’ve had the opportunity to support hundreds of professionals through their career journeys. And whether we are coaching clients on how to negotiate a higher salary or helping them build their personal brand, many have struggled at some point with lack of confidence leading to poor job performance, stalled career progression, and a lack of job satisfaction.

The good news?

We have a few tips that will help you boost your confidence and lead you down a more successful, fulfilling career path.

4 Tips to Boost Your Confidence in the Workplace

1]Throw Out the Negative Talk

The inner story we tell ourselves can drastically shape our self-esteem and confidence. If you are consistently allowing negative talk to take up space in your mind, your self-esteem will also take a hit.

In a recent podcast episode with Career Organic Founder and CEO, Briar Dougherty shared with the audience her career journey and addresses how she built confidence at a young age. When asked if she ever felt like an imposter or under-qualified in her career journey, she responded,

“From time to time, I do have those thoughts.

For me, the difference is I don’t let those thoughts have space in my head.”

Briar goes on to explain that when we have these negative thoughts, we first have to accept that we actually think it. Many people try to immediately erase the fact that they even have these negative thoughts and so they just linger inside you.

As she so eloquently put it, we need to ask ourselves,

“At the end of the day, do you want to feel like that”?

2] Focus on YOU and YOUR Strengths

If you have kids, you’ve probably helped them with an All About Me project. Most of them have questions such as,

I feel happy when…..

My favorite thing to do with my family is……

I’m really good at….

This exercise isn’t just a great way for the teacher and class to get to know each other. It’s also a teaching strategy to help students build their self-esteem and help them identify what makes them special and unique.

Similarly, you want to recognize your strengths and take inventory of the things you do well. Then, you can identify opportunities to integrate them into what you do every day.

If your current position doesn’t allow for you to exercise these strengths, it may be time to reassess your career or change job positions.

3] Set Goals for Yourself

Setting goals will align your focus to more self-efficacy. Setting goals also allows you to define success on your own terms. Achieving these goals will give you a huge confidence boost and mobilize energy towards other achievements and goals.

Think back to when you accomplished a goal either at work or personally.

How great did you feel?

4] Take Care of Your Physical and Emotional Well-Being

Developing self-confidence requires an inside-out approach. So taking care of your emotional and physical well-being is an important component to building self-confidence. Having a lack of confidence can affect not only your professional life, but it can also negatively affect your physical and emotional health.

How we take care of our physical and mental health looks different for everyone. Here are some real-life examples:

  • Carve out time to do something you enjoy (running, baking, reading, time with family or friends).
  • Eat well and get plenty of ZZZ’s at night.
  • Talk to a trusted friend, loved one, or therapist.
  • Exercise - we all know that activating those feel-good chemicals called endorphins does all kinds of wonders for our overall well-being!
  • Find healthy ways to relax - listen to music, meditation, do yoga, or get a massage.
  • Adopt good mental practices - relaxation and breathing techniques, meditation, gratitude.

Be patient (but persistent) as you start implementing these strategies. Gaining confidence not only promotes a flourishing career but an overall sense of well-being.

If you need more guidance, the good news is that you’re surrounded by resources that can guide you in becoming an amazing leader!

We encourage you to schedule a complimentary consultation.

Learn more about Career Organic and our affordable career coaching options here.


Blog Written by - Jessica Shephard  

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