Throwing punches like a girl, and proud of it

boxer

One can almost hear the boxing coach shouting it at their trainee, geeing them up for a fight in the ring. “You’re punching like a girl! C’mon! Harder, faster!” he yells.

‘Throwing punches like a girl’: What exactly does that mean?

Well let’s be real – it’s intended to be derogatory and insinuates that women are the weaker sex, and unable to fight effectively.

Just the same as in the ring, in the business world – being told you’re punching like a girl is meant to me an insult. It means you haven’t really fought hard for the business.

If someone told me though, that I punch like a girl, I would ‘high five’ him or her.

Because to me, it doesn’t mean I am the weaker sex. To me, it means I have cultivated a technique that allows me to garner results, and that I’m fair, empathetic and people focused. It’s not just about throwing that figurative punch but more on how you punch, how often you punch, and ensuring necessary business wins and maximum impact.

This isn’t about feminism, the readers of Dynamic Business get that already. This is about velocity.

It isn’t unrealistic to liken business to a boxing ring. I know we all like to talk about holistic business environments, but human nature gets in the way almost every time. People want to be led, and there are those with the natural aptitude for leadership.

It is likely that in your work environment you have someone doing a bit more of the fighting. In my business, the person fighting is me. I have a group of committed and passionate people who are dedicated to honing a vision and I don’t take this lightly. I have to fight to keep afloat, I have to fight to ensure passion continues and I have to fight to remain competitive. It is not for the faint hearted, as any business owner will attest.

It’s plain wrong to suggest that a woman can’t do this. Some of the toughest, yet results-orientated leaders I have had the privilege to work with have been women. One would be absolutely mistaken to assume a woman will only make decisions out of emotions. Don’t make the mistake of believing a women throwing a punch in business indicates an inability to impact deeply. It would also be wrong to assume that when I use the term ‘throwing a punch’ in business I am suggesting you inflict harm to another company or person, it is simply about protecting your place in your industry.

It’s about being brave but also about fighting fair, and getting through those months when no-one is calling you back, or no sales seem to be happening. It’s easy and far too common to go ‘You know what? I’m out.’  By the way, you can ‘check out’ or quit and still turn up for work. But everyone can tell. So instead you have to decide how long before you get back into the fight.

Ultimately this is not about gender, it’s about strength.

It is the unwavering belief in your product, your business model and your understanding of your market. Despite the misconception of the term, throwing a punch like a girl means you are not passive in business, you are passionate, you are results orientated and you see things through ensuring a successful and sustainable fight in business.

  • http://www.partnerup.com.au Simone

    Great article Alexandra. I come from a corporate background where you feel pressured to succeed by playing by the boys club rules – in my own business I have allowed masculine energies to dominate like drive, achievement and resilience. More recently I chose to step back into my feminine powers – my business after all specialises in strategic alliances and marketing partnerships – relationship building is a feminine power. So is compassion and wanting to inspire others through your example. And I think these are very powerful punches ;-)

  • Jemima L

    Very true Alexandra we are too often being undervalued and misrepresented in business by women who bail too quickly and easily! It is good to see strong women like yourself taking the lead for the rest of us.