Actresses Highlight Career Failures On LinkedIn To Inspire Others

 Perfectionism and the fear of failure have a disproportionate impact on women, but understanding and navigating failure can be a stepping stone to achieving success in one's career. L'Oréal Paris has recently launched an ad campaign that shines a spotlight on the setbacks experienced by celebrity women, aiming to encourage others to see failure not as an obstacle but as a necessary step toward advancement.

As part of the "Worth It Resumé" campaign by L’Oréal Paris, actresses such as Eva Longoria, Andie MacDowell, Helen Mirren, Jane Fonda, and Aja Naomi King have shared their struggles, setbacks, and failures on their LinkedIn resumés. The primary goal is to remove the stigma of failure and inspire others to persevere through setbacks and learn from them.

For instance, Andie MacDowell revealed an unexpected setback from her initial film role where her voice was dubbed over without her prior knowledge. Academy Award winner Helen Mirren recalls her early theatrical debut being criticized as "the weakest link in an otherwise great production." Actresses Eva Longoria and Aja Naomi King shared their experiences with rejection. Longoria disclosed being turned down for over 100 roles because of being "either too Latina or not Latina enough," while King described the challenge of not getting a TV role she believed was hers.

Moreover, Jane Fonda learned the importance of acknowledging her ambition after facing a setback in her early twenties. Her automatic response of "No!!!" when asked about her ambition for a leading role on Broadway made her realize that she needed to acknowledge her ambition proudly. These experiences have taught these actresses valuable lessons about resilience and perseverance.

Regarding the importance of learning from failure, organizational psychologist Amy Edmonson emphasizes that most of us fail to learn the valuable lessons that failures can offer. She highlights the reluctance to reflect on what went wrong and the tendency to deny or quickly move on from failures. Edmonson's insights align with the principle seen in sports, where athletes scrutinize their mistakes to enhance their performance.

Furthermore, organizations like Google's innovation company X recognize the importance of acknowledging failure. Astro Teller, Captain of Moonshots at X, explains that they reward employees for admitting when a project isn't working, creating a safe space to fail and learn from those failures.

It's important to note that many individuals, especially women, fear failure, which can hinder them from taking on challenging tasks. Studies have shown that executive women and female engineering students report higher levels of pressure and fear of failure compared to their male counterparts. This fear can be attributed to the higher standards women must meet to be deemed competent.

However, it's noteworthy that this ad campaign, despite being backed by a cosmetics company known for helping women conceal physical imperfections, embraces the professional failures of these women, signaling a shift towards valuing resilience and perseverance over unrealistic standards of perfection.  

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