5 Ways to Let Your Black Girl Magic Shine through in a Corporate World
BY: PORTIA CRAWFORD
Reading time: 2 minutes
Okay, sis, I know we’ve heard this one a million times, a thousand different ways, in a hundred different memes. But, the truth is, staying hydrated is probably the most important way to literally shine bright like a diamond in the otherwise drab corporate setting that is our day-to-day.
Hydration goes a long way in keeping you looking (and feeling) your best which will, in turn, keep you on your A-game when those all-important promotion opportunities rear their elusive little heads. On an even shallower note, though, we’ve all heard the saying that “black don’t crack” right? Well it’s true to an extent. If you’re out here living a hard life then your black is going to look like a well-worn sidewalk with no city maintenance. But when taken care of properly, our skin is luxurious and definitely stands out in any crowd. Also, studies show, that “looking younger” goes hand-in-hand with employers deeming you more fit for higher paying (and often times more stressful) career options. So when in doubt…pull that water bottle out!
Use your SAT words
A lot of times we don’t realize how we’ve been dumbing ourselves down for our friends and family who might not have frequented the library as often and don’t possess the vernacular we do. Of course, it’s much easier to use the jargon of our social group than it is to have to break down and explain every sentence we say to alleviate the blank stares on our peer’s face. But, in the corporate world, let your nerd flag fly! Show off your vocabulary! When given opportunity choose to use words that you would otherwise bury deep inside your nerdy soul. You’ll be surprised how impactful your word choice can be even in the most mundane of conversations.
Now this is a personal thing that’s different for everybody. It’s not so much about the accessories themselves but more about the way it pulls your appearance together. We all remember those ‘roll out of bed 30 minutes before class and throw on a hoodie’ kind of days but now, in the corporate world, your look needs to say things like ‘I know how to iron,” ‘I meant to wear these shoes with this belt,” and ‘I’m an adult.” Accessories, whether it be a stylish purse, a nice necklace/earring combo, or a watch, really let your adoring public (Susan in accounting) know that you got up this morning on time and with a purpose.
This is a biggie!! I know it seems so cliché, but never underestimate the power of a sincere smile. Now this isn’t the equivalent of Kenneth guffawing at all the boss’s jokes but rather a sincere and well-placed smile while talking with a colleague or just while walking down the corridor. This is you leaving the RBF (Resting B*tch Face) at home and putting on the customer service “I’m happy to be here” face. It might seem small but there’s no limit to what opportunities an approachable spirit can obtain.
Bring On the Personality
Last but most definitely not least, make sure you bring on the personality. Being politically correct is a safe bet but don’t be afraid to let your inner you shine. Humor and laughter is contagious and can really change the way a work environment feels. Being helpful and providing a listening ear not only makes you compassionate it leaves your name right on the tip of your co-worker’s tongue. In a world full of uniforms, corporate culture, and rules your personality is really the only thing that separates you from being a Corporate Cyborg.
Portia Crawford is a Customer Support Coordinator in South Carolina. She has been an avid writer has been published several times. She has worked in a corporate setting for the last 5 to 7 years.
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