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Feeling Like a Fraud?

Have you ever felt like you are fooling everyone and you’re not enough? You are not alone! Imposter Syndrome is a surprisingly common phenomenon amongst professionals, with research suggesting that up to 70% of people experience it at some point in their career. The term ‘imposter syndrome’ may conjure images of pretending to be something you’re not, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. It refers to the persistent feeling of inadequacy and self-doubt despite an individual’s qualifications, achievements or successes. It is often characterized by a fear of being exposed as ‘not good enough’, or a sense that any success has been achieved through luck rather than skill.

Despite its prevalence, professional imposter syndrome can be difficult to spot, as individuals often keep their feelings of self-doubt hidden. It is important for organizations and colleagues to be aware of the signs that someone may be experiencing imposter syndrome, so they can provide appropriate support. These signs may include:

• A fear of failure or being found out as a fraud

• Avoidance of challenging tasks or opportunities that could lead to recognition

• Difficulty accepting praise and compliments, often deflecting them with self-depreciating jokes

• Unwillingness to take credit for success and giving others the “glory” instead.

Organizations can help individuals who are experiencing imposter syndrome by offering support and ensuring that credit is given where it’s due. Open and honest communication can also be hugely beneficial, allowing individuals to express their feelings and giving them an opportunity to discuss their successes. Additionally, fostering a culture of trust and respect can help create a positive work environment where professionals feel comfortable sharing their experiences with imposter syndrome. With the right support and understanding, it is possible to overcome this common challenge and achieve success.

By taking the time to recognize and address professional imposter syndrome, organizations can create a supportive and encouraging environment where everyone feels comfortable enough to excel. With the right support, individuals can learn to overcome their feelings of inadequacy and achieve success.


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