Today we visited Workday and listened to employees who held 3 very different positions. One belonged to HR, another to marketing and the third was an engineer. Workday is an incredible company and was rated the best in Ireland and ranks very high in the States as well. If I were in their position, at least at the beginning I would feel very intimidated because of the amount of talent that is drawn to their labor force. The employees we spoke to touched on their experience with imposter’s syndrome, which is the anxious feeling you have when you don’t feel competent enough for your role.
There’s a few times in my life where I’ve felt like this, but one I feel relates to this directly is my experience in the professional fraternity that I belong to called Alpha Kappa Psi. The brothers that are part of the organization have a variety of accomplishments, part of huge projects and have very coveted internships or jobs. When I was given a bid for Alpha Kappa Psi, the onset of imposter’s syndrome did not hit immediately. It began once I started to hear the brothers’ stories. When you start hearing about being your peers being flown out to New York City and San Francisco, it can start to make you feel very small in comparison.
The turning point for me, was when I was sitting at a brother’s presentation about undergraduate research. When she began, I immediately thought that wasn’t for me and I thought that I would never be able to come up with something to research. I was surprised to see that her research was about women and sexual abuse and she was so passionate that it made me reconsider. I felt like after hearing her experience and how manageable such a huge endeavor can be when it plays into your interests that I could try my hand too.
Being in Alpha Kappa Psi, the feeling of imposter’s syndrome has dissipated, but I still feel that anxiety when I compare myself to others. I’ve realized though that if you just listen to people’s stories and try to learn from other’s experiences and ask questions, that you can start to make your own strides as well.