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Doyennes Discuss… The L Word!

Emma Blaney, Founding Member and Founder of Productive Property People, writes about our need as women to own our success and stop using the word luck as the reason. Authored by Emma Blaney.


One of the best things about Doyenne is being able to meet so many incredible, inspirational women from across the leasehold sector. Whether a property manager, industry supplier, lawyer, company director or newbie just starting their career, Doyenne brings us all together to celebrate our achievements and connect. But what brought us here? Well, I can tell you one thing, it certainly wasn’t luck!

All too often when I speak to women from across the industry this word ‘luck’ comes into the conversation. “I was lucky to get this opportunity”, “I had a friend and by sheer luck”, “Well I don’t know that I am that good, I just got lucky”. In fact, for a huge amount of my own career I was the same. But no! It was not luck. It was hard work and dedication that got us here so let’s own it!

Studies show that women externalise success while men internalise it. This means that men attribute their success to their inborn talent and skills while women look to the external forces in play and don’t take ownership of what they have done to gain that success. Yes, of course, there was always a door that was opened or a position that came up but who ran through that door? Who went for that position and got that job? You did! Not the manager saw something in you, not that friend that spurred you on, and certainly not luck. YOU DID IT!

We all need to delete the word luck from our vocabulary. When it comes to the next promotion or that new job you desperately want who do you think will get it? The person who says I was lucky or the person who can say with their head held high that they worked hard, work hard and know their stuff. Well luck runs out but determination runs deep so I know who I would pick.

There is no harm in having a little humility, in fact sometimes it’s needed, but the next time you are having a conversation about your career and how you got to where you are today be mindful. Notice how many times your default is to reach for the L word and replace it. Try dedicated, enthusiastic, passionate, hard working. There are so many words that you can use to explain how great you have done, but the first step is recognising that it was you, all you! So, no more luck, no more taking a back seat and remember, you are the best person you can be and you can achieve anything*!

*This is my daily affirmation, try it. ‘I am the best person I can be and I can achieve anything’ because if you don’t believe in you why should anyone else?

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