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The Confidence Code

The Confidence Code

BY Michelle McQuaid

Why Use This Tool?

Do the men in your workplace seem more confident than the women? Are the guys generally better at asking for what they need, putting forward new ideas, and pushing for pay rises and promotions – even if they don’t quite have the answers or qualifications all figured out? If you’re nodding your head, it’s not just in your workplace that men seem to be better at taking action even when it might result in failure.

Researchers have found that men often have more confidence than women at work. A product of the combination of differences in our biological make-up and our upbringing, the good news is that studies have also found your confidence can be shaped by the choices you make. So how confident are you really, and what can you do to feel more authentically confident when it comes to your job?

Kitty Kay and Claire Shipman, best-selling authors of The Confidence Code worked with leading psychologists around the globe to create the free Confidence Code Quiz to help you find out. Taking about five minutes to complete, the survey explores the links between self-esteem and confidence and the results give you insights into how your confidence levels stack up, and the possible impact this has on your professional life. It also provides you with practical, evidence-based tips and advice to consistently improve your confidence.

How To Get The Tool?

 This free on-line quiz is available by clicking here.*

What Have Researchers Found?

Researchers suggest that confidence is simply the ability to turn our thoughts into action. And this is why when it comes to our careers, studies are finding that confidence is often more important than competence.

After interviewing leading researchers around the globe, Katty Kay and Claire Shipman concluded that confidence is within reach for women if we:

  • Choose to practice being authentic – confidence comes from playing to your distinctive strengths and values, whilst allowing for vulnerability when needed. You can listen to others opinions, without apologizing for your own. You can ask for help, without undermining your own abilities. You can be focused, and still be approachable. You can interact with confidence and presence in any setting when you get comfortable with who you really are.
  • Think a little less – the female brain is wired to overthink things. If you’re a woman reading this then you’ve probably noticed a tendency to replay your mistakes, cling on to criticism, catastrophize about small challenges, and over prepare the simplest things. Ruminating drains the confidence from you, so it’s important to rewire this thinking pattern and know when it’s time to draw a red-line under negative thoughts and move on. Instead of running yourself down with stories about why you’re not good enough, try a little self-compassion and start talking to yourself like you would to a friend.
  • Regularly take action – it seems nothing builds confidence like taking action, especially when the action involves risk and failure. Turning your thoughts into action means stepping outside your comfort zone, opening yourself up to learning, and discovering that sometimes failure provides your greatest lessons. Each time you choose to do one small, brave thing, the next time it gets a little easier and soon confidence begins to flow.

What neuroscientists call plasticity – your brain’s ability to change over time in response to new patterns of thinking and behaving – Katty and Claire call hope when it comes to improving your confidence.


*Please note by taking the survey you’ll be contributing to a research project, and the final section of this assessment is to help with demographic research and is not an attempt to gather personal information.

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