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In the newest episode of the Empowered Business podcast, we are chatting about how you can flip the script and end female rivalry for good with Amber Tichenor.

Episode 36: How to Put a Stop to Female Rivalry and Grow Together with Amber Tichenor

Have you ever felt like you couldn’t trust a close female friend because of female rivalry? 

Most women have! Unfortunately, rivalry among women is a very common occurrence, but there is a shining light at the end of it. Once we are aware that this is happening, we can change it! 

Amber Tichenor is an expert when it comes to this topic, so she is joining me in this episode to break it down.

Amber Tichenor has a Ph.D. in Industrial/ Organizational (I/O) Psychology and is the founder of To Be, Coaching + Consulting®. A thought leader on the topic of women’s rivalry, Amber has 20+ years’ experience as an Organizational Change Strategy and Leadership consultant where she helped guide businesses through transformational change. 

Her book, “Behind Frenemy Lines: Rising Above Female Rivalry To Be Unstoppable Together,” published by Morgan James Publishing, will be available in November 2021.

Amber is deeply passionate about addressing the phenomenon of rivalry between women, and wrote her PhD thesis on the topic. She consults with organizations, offers speaking engagements and workshops on the importance of the phenomenon, the challenges and behaviors it presents, along with coping and recovery steps.

In Today’s Episode We Discuss:

  • How common female rivalry really is
  • The difference between the male and the female dynamic
  • How women are treated and are expected to behave in the workplace
  • How the evolution of women is seen as a threat to some
  • How fear drives change
  • How to promote collaboration over competition
  • The impact of female rivalry on the psychological safety of a working or social environment, and how to overcome it.


Amber’s goal is to promote collaboration over competition, to empower women to find their voice, leave the rivalry behind, and team up with a community of like-minded women. I think her mission is SO powerful and beyond important. I hope that you agree and learn a new perspective on female rivalry from this episode.

Make sure to pre-order Amber’s new book: Behind Frenemy Lines: Rising Above Female Rivalry To Be Unstoppable Together here. 

Don’t miss your chance to get my free training. You’ll learn the 3 secrets to create digital products that sell like crazy. You’ll also get my foolproof strategy to discover the perfect money-making digital product.

Resources Mentioned:

Speaker1: [00:00:00] So you are listening to the Empowered Business podcast. I’m your host, Monica Fros, a mom of two and your secret weapon to creating a six figure digital product business. I’m on a mission to help 1000 women make one hundred thousand dollars a year. That’s right, one hundred million dollars towards financial independence for women. As an online business expert, I am teaching you everything I know right here week after week, so you can join us on the journey to one hundred million dollars. Sound good? Then let’s jump in. Today, I’m bringing you a different type of episode, but one that really needs to get out


Speaker2: [00:00:53] There and every woman


Speaker1: [00:00:55] Out there needs to listen to this podcast episode. I am talking to Amber Tickner. She has a Ph.D. in Industrial Organizational Psychology, and she is the founder of To.be Coaching and Consulting. She is a thought leader on the topic of women’s rivalry. That’s right. This is such an important topic. She has 20 plus years of experience as an organizational change strategy and leadership consultant, where she helped guide businesses through transformational change. And she has a book coming out that everyone needs to read called behind enemy lines rising above female rivalry to be unstoppable together. And it’s going to be coming out shortly in November of twenty twenty one. Amber is deeply passionate about addressing the phenomenon of rivalry between women and wrote her PhD thesis on the topic. She consults with organizations, offer speaking engagements and workshops on the importance of this phenomenon, the challenges and behaviors it presents along with coping and recovery steps. So I will tell you that the idea of rivalry can sound


Speaker2: [00:02:04] So negative,


Speaker1: [00:02:06] But there is a shining light at the end of it, and there is a way that once you’re aware that this is happening, that we can change it. And Amber says that her goal is to promote collaboration over competition. Yes, and to empower women. Hello, welcome to the Empowered Business Podcast to find their voice. Leave the rivalry behind and team up with community of like minded women. I promise you, this is an episode that you do not want to miss, so let’s dove right in and meet amber. Amber, welcome to the Empowered Business Podcast.


Speaker3: [00:02:43] Thank you so much for having me, Monica. I’m excited to be here.


Speaker1: [00:02:47] I am so excited for this conversation. This might be the conversation I am most looking forward to because I’m so passionate about this topic. Yeah. Before we jump in to the topic at hand, I like to start and ask every guest about their entrepreneurial journey. How did you become an entrepreneur? Why did you become an entrepreneur and what are you doing now?


Speaker3: [00:03:07] Well, that is a great question, not a loaded question, but I will try to make it not too lengthy. So my background is in organizational psychology, which is I focused a lot of work on change management, leadership development and worked as a consultant with a lot of corporations. So in that process, I got my PhD and I had to focus on a topic in the working environment, which I wanted to do, but I really wanted to hone in on women. And so


Speaker2: [00:03:41] That’s how


Speaker3: [00:03:42] I started my interest in rivalry between women. And fast forward, I get my PhD. I’ve collected all these stories and I’m back again in corporate America working


Speaker2: [00:03:53] And


Speaker3: [00:03:54] What I had studied. I found out I was knee deep in it and had no clue.


Speaker2: [00:03:59] And so I


Speaker3: [00:04:00] Once I realized that I was truly in this rivalrous situation, I went, walked in and quit and gave my two weeks notice, Mike out of here. Granted, I was a consultant, but I still gave my two weeks notice and I was in a little bit of shell shock that I thought, Gosh, if I have studied rivalry and competition and female relationships as much as I have yet, I’m in it and I didn’t see it, and it took my mom asking me a question that I had that read that big light bulb moment. What is it doing for women who don’t know about it yet? It’s such a vast behavioral problem. So that’s how I started my to be journey with, to be coaching and consulting, which is my business. And I focus on female relationships, and I specifically focus on female rivalry and how to overcome it.


Speaker1: [00:04:55] I have seen this more times than I can count, so I spent 11 years in corporate tech. Yeah, I saw it manifest in a lot of different ways. I’m very curious. The way is that you see it manifest most frequently. The ways I saw it were. I saw very limited seats available at higher tables, so women fought with each other because it was more of a survival like they didn’t want to give up their seat. They were threatened by other intelligent women instead of uplifting them, which I believe should happen. They were threatened by it. I saw managers, female managers try to keep down female employees because of the same reason. If they if they registered good ideas, they often took those ideas. It was like we were honestly, my experience. My experience in corporate was we were incentivized not to like other


Speaker2: [00:05:48] Females because they were a threat


Speaker1: [00:05:49] To our job.


Speaker2: [00:05:51] Yes, that is very common and


Speaker3: [00:05:54] I’ve seen it that exact same way. So what initially piqued my interest on this was I saw I hadn’t when I first started writing about it, I’d been impacted in little bits and pieces of it, and I think there’s a lot of ways for it to rear its ugly head.


Speaker2: [00:06:11] But I was in a corporate setting.


Speaker3: [00:06:14] It was an all female team of consultants consulting for an all female team, very powerhouse, very strong personalities and I saw it occurring and no one talked about it. And so that it’s like these intangible hate behaviors were happening, get people. It was swept under the rug. And so the culture, how I like what you just said. The culture was endorsing the negativity, and as a result, the negative behavior was being rewarded and good women were walking. Yet on the other end. You have organizations saying, Well, why did she go? She was a top employee. We’ve invested a year and grooming her and getting her ready, and now she’s out the door. They were afraid to address the population, so I think you coined it head on.


Speaker2: [00:07:01] And I think when it happens


Speaker3: [00:07:03] Personally and you may have experienced this as well, often it is so intangible and hard to see it that you question yourself and doubt it. You say, Well, why would she do that to me? I didn’t do anything to her. Why did Monica? And often, why did Monica treat me that way? And often, maybe when you look back to when it’s really specifically targeted toward you, it’s not done overtly in front of other people.


Speaker1: [00:07:32] Correct? Yeah. And it really. So my personality type is I have a very hard time understanding people having ulterior motives that are not nice ones. Yes. And often I trust the wrong people. Yeah. And it has burned me a lot. The corporate was very difficult for me because I think I misunderstood a lot because I’m loud and outspoken and I’m opinionated, like I put it most opinionated. My senior year of high school and our yearbook, and I am very opinionated, so people think they know me better than they do. And it made for some reason it actually made me more of a target for other women. I don’t, I guess I still don’t know why


Speaker3: [00:08:17] That I know why you, I’m sure, with your personality. And that comes across as confidence, which is awesome and you are confident that’s a threat. That’s a threat to somebody that. Why does she know all this or why is she so confident in that when I’ve been here longer or, you know, like or in what I always tell everybody. Even though it affects you so personally in your thinking, what have I done like you totally question yourself. You doubt yourself. Ninety nine point nine percent of the time Chances are that behavior has nothing to do with you and everything to do with her. It’s how she feels about herself. It’s a lack of self-confidence. It’s a need for control. It’s just plain envy. It could be how she was raised, you know, like maybe this is something that she had in her family or how she was treated.


Speaker2: [00:09:10] So chances are it


Speaker3: [00:09:12] Never has anything to do with you. The hard lesson to learn.


Speaker1: [00:09:15] It’s a huge yes. And even in my business, I had to, you know, when you get someone will write a really nasty email and it’s really in business because I have a personal brand. It’s it feels very personal when someone attacks my hard work and then often I, I try so hard to remind myself it’s something’s triggering them that has nothing to do with me. I just happen to be in the right place, at the right, at the right time. There’s such thing as constructive criticism, which I’m totally open to and just being mean to bring someone down.


Speaker3: [00:09:48] Well, and I’ve had other people say, OK, why are they acting that way? And my other thought is some. There are just mean people like maybe that’s just in their DNA and they are unhappy with themselves, but nothing you do is going to change how they think about you. It’s hard, hard, hard not to take personally and for all the families out there that have young daughters, this is a talk I constantly have with my now seventh grader. Like, try to step back and not take it personally because chances are it’s not you at all. But it’s not one.


Speaker1: [00:10:26] It does. My daughter’s in fourth grade. My oldest is in fourth grade, just started yesterday and. She she’s had some mean girl situations that started as early as first grade, and I have to tell you, it was very disheartening to witness with her.


Speaker3: [00:10:41] Well, even in the work I do, my daughter Audrey now, as I said, is in seventh grade. And I remember I first noticed it in kindergarten and I was shocked. I remember with me my earliest memories are probably fourth and fifth grade. But to see it happening in kindergarten on the playground. My first thought was, OK, this is not traditionally innate and innate behavior. They are mirroring what they’ve seen. They’re just not. So it’s they’re being taught this from somebody. Ok, so


Speaker1: [00:11:16] It’s probably a big question to say, why is this happening? But why is this happening?


Speaker3: [00:11:23] I think it’s again going back to the person that’s projecting the behavior. It’s how she it’s insecurity need for control. Low self-confidence. So and I think there’s kind of a I don’t want to call it a myth. I have to think of the right word. There’s a thought that there’s not enough room for everybody to sit at the table. And I think that’s absolutely false because if I’m a coach and your coach and maybe we’re even coaching clients on the same type of work, chances are how you approach it and how I approach it are vastly different. Even if we would have similar clients, I’m not always going to click with everybody and might say, Hey, Mark is a great person. I think you two would hit it off and do really well together. But I think there’s especially for women, because we’ve had to fight for where we are to get our seat at the table. There’s this myth that there’s not enough room once you get there, and I think that’s wrong because I do think there is. And I think if you flip the lens and you can see what you gain when you have this sisterhood that has your back like, it’s vast, it’s so huge. But it’s so hard to flip that thought process, especially if you’ve been ingrained in this negative behavior for so long.


Speaker1: [00:12:45] I am curious how when I think back


Speaker2: [00:12:48] To corporate big corporate


Speaker1: [00:12:50] Environment, how do you even begin


Speaker2: [00:12:53] To make this


Speaker3: [00:12:54] Change? So you first in a culture, you have to have people who are willing to talk about


Speaker2: [00:13:00] It, I think open,


Speaker3: [00:13:02] Transparent communication is key. It has to come down from leadership, but it has to be at all levels. You talk about it when you on board, folks, you talk about it when you have your yearly trainings. I honestly firmly believe it’s an aspect of bullying behavior. And I know women, I could not diagnose them, but I know they’ve had it for long periods that I think it’s probably could be named as PTSD because it’s so awful how you feel and how hard it is to shake it afterward. I think also organizations need to be accountable and hold people accountable so you either implement bystander training or you implement repercussions for when this behavior occurs back to what I said, where the negative behavior is being rewarded. It’s like you’re out of here. If you act that way, we’re not going to put up with it. So but it really stems from just being open and transparent about this is occurring and this is how we’re going to change it. And you talk about it.


Speaker1: [00:14:05] How do you see men playing into it?


Speaker3: [00:14:08] I I’ve had that’s a great question. So someone said, I’ve had this from men as well, and I said, I’m sure you will, and I’m sure it feeds into it. I’ve only really studied the relationships between women. I think inadvertently, men sometimes may not know that this is going on. I think some do put their head in the sand, but I think some truly don’t know they’re oblivious because traditionally, and I’m generalizing, men don’t act this way. So when I had to study this initially, I had to have it grounded in theory, and there’s no theory out there for a rivalry between women. So I’m like, What is what I have to look to?


Speaker2: [00:14:51] So I looked for behaviors of aggression.


Speaker3: [00:14:54] So when kids are little, when they’re born, they have the same types of aggressive behavior and it’s usually physical. And it isn’t until little girls are maybe seven eight nine that their social intelligence kicks in sooner than boys. Boys will get it. That’s when they


Speaker2: [00:15:12] Start to interact


Speaker3: [00:15:14] In the verbal and the different types of aggressive behaviors. And so that’s the difference. Like, for example, men, you’ll see them in a boardroom. Well, hey, Charlie, why did you do that? Well, Bob, you pissed me off and blah blah blah.


Speaker2: [00:15:30] And an hour later,


Speaker3: [00:15:32] They’ll be on the golf course having a beer. But for women, then, well, your kid sucks at math. And why are you driving that car? And why are you wearing clothes like that like it does? It’s never about the actual. It grows, it gets bigger and it becomes personal. As you said,


Speaker1: [00:15:48] Yes, we, my husband and I talk about this in terms of how I chain-link things together. So I’ll be I’ll be mad about something and I’ll reference something he did at a specific date six years ago. And he’s like, What are you talking about?


Speaker3: [00:16:03] Totally out of his realm.


Speaker1: [00:16:04] Yeah, he’s like, Well, I don’t. I mean, I’m not saying it didn’t happen, but what you know, he does not Chainlink. And I saw this so much in corporate. I wish I, you know, because I was in corporate, in my twenties and in your twenties there still a lot I did not know. You know,


Speaker3: [00:16:21] There are entry into the workforce like you’re new, like you’re learning this and it sounds from you. You’re very trusting of people to.


Speaker1: [00:16:29] Yeah. And but like I have, I have a very good memory. And so I spent a lot of time since I started my business, like looking back on my time in corporate. And one of the things that struck me was how men would get so competitive with each other. They could absolutely confront each other and get past it. But they would also like. So money is a huge thing. I’ve noticed where women money is like a negative thing for women in general, like to talk about to celebrate, and men would be like, Well, look what I did, look my stock up. And it was like a competition with them. And then they would go rub elbows, and it was like they were elevating each other like I one up you, but not a negative way. Whereas women make it between each other negative, and it’s so fascinating to me, and it’s been very clear to me for a long time why men have gotten ahead in the business environment for as long as they have, considering that they just the dynamic difference there.


Speaker3: [00:17:29] Well, and what you brought up, which is so huge. So in your example about how men are acting. Think of if women act that way, they’re portrayed as too strong of a personality. They’re portrayed as bitchy, they’re portrayed as not nice, the queen bee and money to for women. We’ve kind of been trained that it’s an uncomfortable or taboo topic to talk about. So. It’s the yeah, it’s just kind of the gender roles.


Speaker1: [00:17:59] Every time I would be somewhat confrontational with something in the boardroom, particularly honestly my intelligence, I think I I think I felt I lacked intelligence because of my experiences in corporate.


Speaker2: [00:18:17] Like, I know


Speaker1: [00:18:18] I’m very smart. But but I was disincentivized from speaking up and overruling when I knew I was right about something. And because of how many times I got shot down by, it was negative to be confrontational. It was negative to having a strong opinion. I should be different like I should defer my opinion. And after a while, when you’re in an environment that you know, it took me probably three years into my business before I started honoring that side of me again and being more. No, this is how I feel about this topic with a big period at the


Speaker2: [00:18:54] End instead of making


Speaker1: [00:18:55] Excuses


Speaker3: [00:18:56] For it, justifying it. I think you hit it on the head. I think I’ve heard so many stories where women have said,


Speaker2: [00:19:04] Well, you’re too abrasive or


Speaker3: [00:19:05] This know this is what they were told. But if you think about your age, you’re in your 20s. This is your first corporate job. It’s very different from college. It’s very different from any side job you’ve had to work through college or anywhere else, and somebody is telling you how to act so after it will break you


Speaker2: [00:19:25] Down and then


Speaker3: [00:19:26] You start to believe it and it erodes at your confidence. I mean, even I liken it like I felt great when I was in it, like I felt like my world didn’t have color and it didn’t impact just work. It came home with me. It impacted how I was as a wife, as a friend, as a mom because it was eating me up what was happening at work? Because you start to kind of believe it, because you think, Well, why would they be wrong? Why would somebody do that to me? And that’s that intangible ness of it. And it two down after a while. And even though I’ve studied it and I know it, it took me a chunk of time. I’ll tell you it was honestly when I pivoted my


Speaker2: [00:20:11] Business and I said,


Speaker3: [00:20:13] This is what I’m going to do. I went back to all of my interviews because I knew at some point I wanted to bring those into a


Speaker2: [00:20:20] Book and share


Speaker3: [00:20:22] Those. But I was like, Oh my God, what she said to me, that’s how I feel. So it kind of it was validating, and that’s when like, you know, we this needs to be talked about because it can make you feel so low. And I think society, they glamorize it. It’s a catfight. It’s women being dramatic, and it’s it’s so much more than that because it’s all these things behind the scenes that no one talks about. But you have reality shows glamorizing it or movies or articles, and there’s a lot more to it.


Speaker2: [00:20:54] And when women


Speaker1: [00:20:54] Do speak out about it, like I remember watching recently, it wasn’t that long ago because my daughter loves Taylor Swift. Yeah, and Taylor likes to speak up about these things because she’s experienced it in the music industry. I mean, she has songs about it even, and she continues to get negative press. Yes. And just like my daughter picked up on it and asked me, you know, when this was so funny? So my youngest went through this Justin Bieber stage and we were on YouTube and we put on a performance of of Bieber on


Speaker2: [00:21:28] Saturday Night Live. Yeah.


Speaker1: [00:21:30] And he comes up, comes out in like basically he was not. It was like he rolled out of a tent, you know, like not put together at all. And my oldest is like,


Speaker2: [00:21:42] Um, if


Speaker1: [00:21:43] Taylor walked out on stage like that, she’d be booed off. That’s not fair. She was so mad and I was like, Wow, she’s eight, and she’s already seeing the different ways that we are like how we are socialized, that we have to be a certain way. Women have to be a certain way and act a certain way to even get attention. Yes. And I’m just like, So this is why I’m so excited for this


Speaker3: [00:22:09] Conversation caught on. I mean, yeah. Sorry to interrupt you.


Speaker1: [00:22:12] Yes, she’s I mean, I know I’ve talked about this because she was three or four when I left corporate. And I mean this, this has been like a recurring


Speaker2: [00:22:22] Theme


Speaker1: [00:22:24] And how women are treated in general, because I’ve been exposed to a lot of situations where women didn’t have equal say and life decisions and financial decisions, and I’ve rallied against this. And so she hears it from me. So I think so. It makes me wonder, you know, I guess I see her recognizing it, but I don’t really know how to change it for her.


Speaker3: [00:22:49] I love that she sees it at such a young age because I think that’s key. I think it’s. Again, because it just doesn’t happen at work, it happens in society, it’s just talking about it and also I think it’s having the ability to call it out and you can call it out. You don’t have to be mean to call it out. I actually am a huge advocate of humor, too. Well, Monica, I know you just didn’t mean to make me feel that way, you know, and then that can bounce back and it’s like, I see you. And so it’s more of this. I see you and I’m not going to take it because it’s not acceptable and I don’t treat you that way. And I think with that especially. From having young girls in there, they’re finding their voice and it’s showing them what is acceptable and how to be treated. And so a big thing I always say is practice the pause before you respond because think about how someone is treating you and think about how it makes you feel before you respond, maybe in the same manner, but also reflect on that. If you feel when you walk away from somebody that you’re the topic of conversation, or if you feel when you’re with somebody that you’re walking on eggshells and can’t be your true self, is that your true friend like you really have? I would rather have fewer really good friends than a whole bunch of people that are so-called friends that I’m not myself with, and I had so many women say, Well, we have a history. We’ve been, you know, our kids went to preschool together or we’ve been friends since college. You know what? I get that. I love that. But is that really a reason to stay in touch with somebody if you don’t feel you can be yourself with them because relationships evolve? I mean, just


Speaker2: [00:24:43] Because we met today,


Speaker3: [00:24:44] Are we going to be friends in 20 years? Well, we


Speaker2: [00:24:46] Might, but we might


Speaker3: [00:24:47] Not, you know?


Speaker1: [00:24:49] Yeah, yeah. So evolving is a very interesting topic to like being. I’ve run into this a lot since I’m done having kids now. And this idea that. People around me don’t like that I am going through like a change evolution, it’s uncomfortable for them and so they’ll do a lot to try to keep me from changing and evolving. Yes. And one of the things I realize through this is I definitely in my life. Every time I’ve knee jerk react to a situation emotionally, I’ve pretty much always regretted it. And so one of the biggest changes I’ve gone through, especially now that I have employees, is and I used to say in corporate, I didn’t want to manage people because I’m like, I’m going to be his worst nightmare. I’ll just like, spout off and say whatever, and this will be terrible.


Speaker2: [00:25:37] And well,


Speaker1: [00:25:38] Now I don’t want to. I definitely don’t want to be like that to people who work for me. So I have had to learn if I am agitated about situation, to evaluate it before I speak, walk away from it and come back to it. So it’s OK. So the idea of women being able to evolve and change and grow is one of the things I also


Speaker2: [00:25:59] Saw


Speaker1: [00:25:59] Is I’ve experienced it and it was just it’s negatively looked upon. Why is that?


Speaker3: [00:26:05] Because I think to some people, it’s a threat, because not everybody is willing to change or grow and great if you don’t want to, that’s your choice. But if I want to, don’t knock me down because I’m making you feel uncomfortable, I’m not doing it on purpose. That’s just a reflection of your own self, you know, like, it’s again, it goes back to. Chances are, it’s nothing to do with you and everything to do with them. So if you are growing and flourishing and Mary over here isn’t, Mary has choices. Sure, everybody has choices in different ways about how you can do things, but you still have personal choices regarding how to make change. And some people never. Some people are so change averse they will never do it. And that’s but then that’s living in fear. So it’s a combination of things, but fear drives. But I think fear also drives change. So it’s, you know, it’s how you use it.


Speaker1: [00:27:07] So one of the things I hear a lot from even family members is how much they don’t want to work for a female boss that it working for a female is the absolute worst. Like, I have her very and it’s oh, I heard it for years, but it’s just recently, probably within the last like two or three that it’s made me take pause. Like, wait a minute here. Like why? Why is the female manager acting like this that makes female employees not want to work for them? So let’s just say you’re a female employee and you have a female


Speaker2: [00:27:40] Manager and


Speaker1: [00:27:42] You recognize this as the employee and you need your job,


Speaker2: [00:27:46] You’re like, you need the


Speaker1: [00:27:47] Paycheck, which is often the case of why people don’t do anything about it. And so this this thing keeps perpetuating. So what can you do to change it if you need the job?


Speaker3: [00:28:00] So that’s totally you’re in Iraq in between a rock and a hard spot. And because to like in my situation, just quitting, I remember my husband saying most people just don’t quit. I’m like, Yeah, I know, but I was fed up. But you’re right, most people can’t just quit. That’s your job. It’s your livelihood. I always start because when this is occurring in the working environment, it’s usually so very passive aggressive and intangible. And if you are in a culture where this is endorsed, you may not know like, is HR on your side? Do you have somebody you can confide to another type of leadership person?


Speaker2: [00:28:39] You have to


Speaker3: [00:28:40] Document, document, document and it’s repetitive, and it might not give you immediate answers, but after a while, you’re going to see a story and then that will give you something tangible. Because if I’m just saying I’m going to H.R. and saying, Monica is doing this to me as my give me examples like, and then it’s hearsay, so you have to always document. My other first thing is, OK, maybe see if there’s a way that you could step outside of the working environment. And if you’re on, let’s go take a little walk and just say, Hey, I’m feeling this way. I did this, actually. Hey so-and-so, I’m feeling this way. What can I do to improve our relationship? And I put it back on me to not make her be defensive? And she said, Oh no, everything’s great. Which was complete. Not true. And you might. You just have to be prepared to know that they might not agree that they see that there’s a problem, but just try to do these little things. And maybe the relationship’s so bad you don’t feel comfortable. Maybe you do go to air first and just say, Hey, can you give me advice? And you start out slowly, but that’s documenting is key. And that’s not to record things, because I know somebody that got fired for recording because. And their state without asking permission, you could not record.


Speaker1: [00:30:07] Yeah, that’s violation of privacy.


Speaker2: [00:30:09] Exactly.


Speaker3: [00:30:10] And so there’s all different ways, and if she’s hell on wheels, you might not feel comfortable talking to her directly because that’s who she is. And so you just have to kind of think what you can do, but then look broader and not think you’re going to get a certain answer.


Speaker1: [00:30:27] So do you think one of the best ways to impact this, which I’m going to guess, is so because you have a book coming out about it, which I want to talk about is to educate more women, that this that this is happening so that we’re because I guess we need to be aware of it because how are we going to change it if we’re not aware of it? The more of us that are aware of it, the more likely there is that we can impact the change. And there has to be a lot of people like me and you who have experienced it felt like something was wrong with us because of it.


Speaker3: [00:30:55] Yes, and that’s the first thing it makes you feel, what did I do? What’s wrong with me? And that’s the word, but it’s natural. But if we could get rid of that feeling, because when you’re being squashed down, it’s hard to find your confidence and speak out against something because you’re doubting yourself, especially if you’re younger, I find. And this isn’t always the case, but I find it. You’re getting older. I know when I was younger, I probably wouldn’t have said anything. Now I would say what is going on.


Speaker1: [00:31:24] But yes, I totally agree with that.


Speaker3: [00:31:27] Yes, it’s you said educate women. It’s very much that. It’s also educating the men just so men see it too on there. Like this is just something to get out in the open. Like, this happens in work situations. It changes the culture. A huge thing that I talk about in my book and the culture is the aspect of psychological safety. So this is happening to you and you have employees or associates in your organization that are feeling not psychologically safe. They their work, not work ethic. What they will do will go down at least by 50 percent because they can’t be themselves. They are afraid to speak out. So the aspect of psychological safety in this circumstance is huge, and it would be the same for other types of bullying.


Speaker2: [00:32:18] But people will


Speaker3: [00:32:19] Check out and then then what do you have? You don’t have an employee that’s truly there doing the work physically. They could do it mentally. They’re probably beaten down and they just don’t have the capacity to do it.


Speaker1: [00:32:32] That was me at the end of my tenure in corporate. I, it was like I knew I was really good at what I did and it was just discouraging. It was discouraging watching the dynamics now, and it felt like an uphill battle that I just I was burned out after 11 years and I was still at that point at just the very beginning stages of even recognizing that this was going on.


Speaker3: [00:32:59] And well, you know what, when you’re in it, so many women can’t recognize it. I didn’t tell. My mom had asked me that question. And then, but I know about it. It’s very hard to recognize it when you’re in it because other areas are shutting down and maybe you’re just getting by, you know? And so it’s almost like you have to step away and have that reflection. Maybe not so much in the beginning. So that’s why if it’s if it’s something that’s more readily talked about, if there’s bystander training or if there’s open communication where it’s talked about, you still have your voice to call it out. But if you’ve been beaten down for three six months a year, you’re not going to say anything because you don’t. You really don’t. It affects you mentally, mentally, physically, socially, psychologically, you really you’re probably it’s hard enough just to get there and go to work. Like I had the Sunday Blues. I would go to bed Saturday night and think, Oh my God, mommy, I just have one more day before I go to work and it ruined my weekend. So, yeah,


Speaker1: [00:34:06] I know that feeling. So tell us about your book,


Speaker2: [00:34:09] Then the


Speaker1: [00:34:09] Name and what’s about obviously what it’s about.


Speaker3: [00:34:12] But my book is called Behind Enemy Lines and rising above female rivalry to be unstoppable together. So it’s a mouthful, but pre-sales are now on Amazon and other digital book sales organizations, and it will be out in November in bookstores and online. And I’m just also now working on the audio book and that should come out after the first of the year. And really, thank you. It goes through what it is, how it impacts you, but then how to overcome it, because I think that’s the key thing when we do, you find a sisterhood of women that you totally trust, that you know, have your back. And it’s just an awesome feeling. And it it breaks my heart that there are women out there that say they don’t have friends or won’t work for another female or won’t work on all female teams. That’s half the population in the world. Like, that’s tragic.


Speaker1: [00:35:09] So there is a positive note here like this. This is something that we can overcome.


Speaker3: [00:35:14] I think it’s it’s baby steps, but I think it’s doable because I know the women I have, whether you call it your circle, your tribe, your pod, you think about the women that uplifted support you, that you do them in return and you know they’re there for you unconditionally. Like if we flip the funnel, if we call out the behavior and say we’re not putting up with this anymore and women get a bad rap for that, that’s why I think it’s this catfight thing. We can flip it. I hope we can, because it’s honestly rare that you meet somebody that hasn’t had this type of behavior impact them.


Speaker1: [00:35:51] Yeah, yeah. Well, once you start talking about it, I know many people, once I was secure in my business and I started mentioning things to former coworkers, even my good friend from. High school who still work in corporate, one of them still works at the job I had as I would bring it up. Yes, it it was. Stories would pour out. It was like, Wow, I felt so alone when this


Speaker3: [00:36:14] Was going on. And that’s it, because it’s not talked about when you’re in it. You didn’t know that there were other colleagues experiencing the same thing like wrong. That’s why we need to bring it out.


Speaker1: [00:36:25] So it’s like the book is like. This big shining light of, hey, I’m validating, this is a real thing and we can do something about it.


Speaker3: [00:36:34] Yes. If we had that and do it, we’re going to kick its booty.


Speaker1: [00:36:38] If I do not regret my business at all because I love it and I think I was completely meant to do what I’m doing and and I don’t really think I was meant to work in the corporate structure. I think I was always kind of a free spirit like that, but I sure wish I had this book


Speaker3: [00:36:52] When you


Speaker2: [00:36:53] Are in it.


Speaker3: [00:36:54] Question for you, because this is what I learned from so many women. Would you? Would you say that that negative experience has helped you?


Speaker1: [00:37:06] Oh yeah. I mean, you know, I’m it’s kind of like how I see having kids. So my first daughter, I flatlined on the table. I mean, I almost died having her and and she knows this. She knows the whole story. And I always tell her


Speaker2: [00:37:20] I was like, The best


Speaker1: [00:37:21] Things in life usually come from the hardest adversities. Know, and I was like, because I think I’ve had childbirth glorified to me, like many women do. And this is I equate it to this because it was glorified for me. I thought this was going to be this like euphoric experience, and it ended up nearly breaking me. I had bad postpartum PTSD and I’m like, I was mad. I was mad that people glorify something that is just like, it is so hard, and you can separate the fact that you love your child. Like, I would die for my girls. Absolutely. I love them so much like I almost feel like my love for them is so much more magnified because it was so tough on me


Speaker2: [00:38:00] To


Speaker1: [00:38:01] To have them. And that is how I feel


Speaker2: [00:38:03] About everything I


Speaker1: [00:38:04] Went through. And no matter how hard it was, it made me a better person. It makes me a better leader in my business today because I can recognize who knows how I would have treated my other female employees had I not gone through this.


Speaker3: [00:38:20] And I feel the same way I like in mine, like, I’m here thinking, Oh, I know all this, I know this behavior. I’ve researched it. I have empathy. I understand when it happened to me, I coined that as one of the best, worst things I could have ever had. But it totally legitimized everything that I’ve researched. Because, you know what? I feel it in and out. It’s no longer about empathy. It’s like, I know exactly how you felt when you went through it, and I think I needed to have that to just get me over the hurdle to complete what I’m doing. But yeah, yeah, I can hear now. But so many women I’ve talked to, they will say, I take this negative because I know now what I don’t want to be. I know how I don’t want to be treated.


Speaker1: [00:39:10] Exactly. And it’s not like I’m immune to ever feeling catty behavior. I mean, yeah, sure. You know, I feel it. I am much more aware of it, and I work very hard to contain it. And not I would say I probably in life, I have a propensity for bitterness like I have


Speaker2: [00:39:28] A very past


Speaker1: [00:39:29] Context is very important to me, so I can live in the past a lot. It drives my husband nuts. It does because I remember a lot of things in the past that he’d like to just forget. And I’m like, Yeah, yeah. And so because of that, like, I know that I can let I can catch myself in a loop against other


Speaker2: [00:39:49] Women being


Speaker1: [00:39:50] Mad about something that happened. And then like, I built a whole case in my head and I’m mad at them. And I just had this happen yesterday and I had to stop myself and say, All right, this is not serving anyone. I don’t really want to retaliate against it, you know? And so, yeah, I’m very I think that this might be one of the most important books


Speaker3: [00:40:12] For four women, and I’m excited. I’m so passionate about it. But I thank you for saying that because I love that other women also and men, I’ve had men see it too, which I’m like, Oh my god, I’m Nancy. Yay! And I’m not men bashing, but I think it’s huge because I firmly believe what we can do together is so much greater than what we can do alone. And so that’s really, I think, what it’s about.


Speaker1: [00:40:42] Yeah, I agree. And I will say I probably left corporate with a negative taste for men, which I’ve worked. I’ve had to work at that to equally as working towards recognizing, you know, the female dynamics, also working past being bitter towards some male experiences I had. And it was probably very helpful. My husband was is one of four brothers and so he I had sisters. I only have sisters. He only had brothers. Now we have two daughters and it’s like Ruth. He he’s like, We did not have these issues like we just we would like, you know, fight and get over it. And so he started to see the different dynamics, and that has been very helpful for me. Where? Stuff that he like, he honestly, when I was going through this in corporate, he might not have been able to relate to it. But now that our daughters are of age, that they can speak to each other and he can see those dynamics, he can recognize it now


Speaker3: [00:41:40] Because it’s very different. Again, that male female dynamic, hugely different.


Speaker2: [00:41:47] Oh yeah, no, it’s


Speaker3: [00:41:49] It’s a huge topic. It’s I mean, you know, I love the topic because I wrote a book on it.


Speaker1: [00:41:54] But yeah, so we’re going to we’ll link to we can find it on Amazon now. Yes, I’ll make sure I find it and link to it in the show notes for you.


Speaker3: [00:42:04] I appreciate that. And just to let your listeners know, it’s definitely laid out as a book, but I also have little workbook aspects in it. So each chapter has between seven and nine questions from each topic. So it’s kind of a


Speaker2: [00:42:22] Way to look at your


Speaker3: [00:42:23] Own behavior. That’s one of the things when I talk about it like. Chances are you have nothing to do with why this behavior is targeting you, but I always think it’s a good idea to do a self-check, like do you have a sheet bully sitting on your shoulder? Like, What is that inner voice saying to you? Because if you’re not confident in your own skin, it’s going to be hard to find confidence with other women, you know, so you really to I think another key aspect of this in order for women to overcome this negative behavior, you really have to like yourself first because it’s hard to have a relationship with others if you don’t like who you are.


Speaker1: [00:43:07] Wow, that is such


Speaker2: [00:43:09] A good point. That is such a good point.


Speaker1: [00:43:12] And I can relate to that because I felt like I was told for a long time my personality was wrong. Being outspoken and confrontational that I didn’t like myself, I thought there was a flaw with me for a long time.


Speaker3: [00:43:24] We’re tearing you down like, and that’s it. It’s a cyclical thing. And so we got a break. We have to break the cycle.


Speaker1: [00:43:30] We do. Ok, so we’ll link to the book. Where else can people go to find you?


Speaker3: [00:43:35] So thank you for that. I am on LinkedIn, Dr. Amber Tickner and then Instagram Dr. Amber Tickner, Facebook Dr Amber Tickner. They’re all the same. I recently made them all the same, but that’s where you’ll find my business information and on those sites and my website to be coaching and consulting. And I have on my main website page. If you want tips and tricks about how to know if this behavior is impacting you, you can sign up for my emails that come out, which will also give updates about the book, when that will be out and specials that I have coming. So stay tuned for more.


Speaker1: [00:44:16] Awesome. Ok, we’ll we’ll be sure to link to all of that. Thank you so much for joining us today and sharing all of this with us.


Speaker3: [00:44:23] Thank you, Monica. I appreciate you talking about this and your energy around this topic and knowing how important it is. So I appreciate you for talking about this.


Speaker1: [00:44:37] Thanks for tuning into another episode of the Empowered Business podcast. If you want to get started creating your own digital products and don’t know where to start, we have a brand new training that can help. It’s called three secrets to creating digital products that sell like crazy head on over to empowered business eco for profit to join the free training now. See you again next week.



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