I have always believed that when you present yourself with confidence in the workplace people perceive you to be competent. Your confidence inspires trust and quite often respect. Of course, you still need to earn the recognition by demonstrating your skills and talent, but at least you are not trying to prove your competence right from the start.

That isn’t to say that all confident people are competent! But our perception of confident people is that they will perform better. Would you hire or buy something from someone who stumbled and struggled through an interview or sales pitch?

Confidence in the workplace helps you to speak up and state your opinions, ask for more high profile assignments, ask for more responsibilities, all of which position you for success.

So I was quite surprised when I read the article in Harvard Business Review this week, Less-Confident People Are More Successful. In this article, the author makes the argument that confident people tend not to be open to feedback, they are not motivated to work harder, and they come across as arrogant.

I would agree that overly confident people might exhibit that behavior, but I find it difficult to agree with him otherwise. Confidence does not equal arrogance and confidence can be your ally to advance your career.

Here is my thinking:

  1. Understanding your value proposition gives you confidence.
  2. Confidence enables you to communicate and demonstrate your value in the workplace.
  3. Communicating and demonstrating your value proposition leads to increased visibility and credibility.
  4. Increased visibility and credibility leads to promotions and career success!

I would love to know your thoughts on the subject.

Do you think confidence helps or hinders your career success?