Joyce M. Roché
Joyce M. Roché, President and CEO of Girls Inc.
"The impostor fears had a greater impact on me early in my career. As I entered corporate America, I faced many unknowns. Being a woman of color in business at a time when very few women were in positions of power, I had to learn by trial and error how I was supposed to perform. This made me so afraid of being wrong or 'looking dumb' that I stayed quiet in meetings. I wanted to make sure everything I said was perfect before I would chance saying anything, and often found myself hearing a guy saying what I had been thinking but was too afraid to say. I did learn fairly early on that my being quiet and not voicing opinions only served to create doubts in the minds of others about my abilities. So I faced the fear and began taking risks to counter any questions about my abilities and me."
"The first time I remember becoming fully aware of my abilities and competencies was when I was faced with the possibility of being overlooked for a promotion I knew I was qualified for. Senior management felt more ‘comfortable' with a white male colleague, and so to advocate for myself I had to compare my abilities and accomplishments to those of the 'heir apparent' and of another male peer. At that point, I recognized the full extent of my experience and my value to the company."
Huffington Post, Photograph via Shriver Report