Ep #124: How to Overcome the ‘Aggressive’ Label at Work

Something happened on a panel I was on recently, and we need to talk about it.

It was a panel discussion for women who wanted to accelerate their careers, and I was honored to be one of the coaches invited to take part in the conversation.

Here’s what happened 👇👇👇

During the Q&A section, three different women raised their hands and asked the same question, but in slightly different ways.

The three questions basically boiled down to this:

How do I avoid receiving feedback that I’m too aggressive at work?

Each of us on the panel had very different points of view on this topic, and I found that incredibly compelling.

But the advice that was being given to these women was specifically on how to have a difficult conversation about the feedback.

And I totally agree with that. Having difficult conversations and standing up for what’s happening to you is so, so important.


As this coaching was being delivered, I noticed that the room started to feel HEAVY.

The women in the audience seemed fixated on how to avoid being told they’re too aggressive.

And this was a big red flag for me. 🚩🚩🚩

Because, how are you going to:

✋ Raise your hand…

📣 Speak up more…

✨ Share your opinions…

💸 Ask directly for that promotion or pay increase…

🤝🏽 Build relationships with the executive team…

…when you’re constantly monitoring how “aggressive” you’re being at work?

Nope. That’s not happening on my watch.

That’s why I’m dedicating this episode of Maximize Your Career with Stacy Mayer to showing you a different path. One where you lean into the beautiful, powerful POSITIVE feedback you are already receiving right now, and one where you don’t let your fear of being seen as aggressive completely hijack your career.

Let’s dive in.

Want to receive the recognition you deserve, step into a higher leadership position, get paid for your ideas instead of the hours you put in at work, and enjoy more time, freedom, energy, and joy? Then you need to get your hands on a copy of Promotions Made Easy. Get your copy here.

What You'll Learn:

  • Why women are terrified of being told they are too aggressive by leadership
  • How we perceive positive and negative feedback differently
  • The power of asking “why” every time you receive feedback
  • The reasons why women are often judged as ‘too aggressive’ or ‘too ambitious’
  • The right way and the wrong way to respond to feedback that you’re too aggressive

Listen to the Full Episode:

Featured on the Show:

Full Transcript


About Your Host

Hi! I'm Stacy Mayer, a Certified Executive Coach and Promotion Strategist on a mission to bring more diversity to the leadership table by getting 1000 underrepresented corporate managers promoted into senior executive positions each year worldwide.

I help undervalued executives scale to the C-Suite using repositioning strategies that build your confidence and visibility, so you can earn the recognition and support you need from key stakeholders while embodying your unique leadership style.

My podcast “Women Changing Leadership with Stacy Mayer” tackles topics like executive communication, getting more respect in the workplace from challenging bosses and team members, and avoiding the common mistakes that sabotage career advancement.

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