Secret of successful women is femininity

London: Ladies, please note – if you want to become successful at work, please shun the aggressive attitude, for a new study says that femininity is the best way for a woman to succeed in a man`s world.

An international team has found that women who take an aggressive approach like many men are often less likely to get ahead than those who exhibit more feminine traits. If however, they try to conform, promotion comes their way.

They tally with past research that showed women oozing with self-confidence, assertiveness and other characteristics linked with successful management can be sidelined at work in favour of meeker types, the `Daily Mail` reported.

It is thought that while such traits are highly prized in men, go-getting women are penalised for not being feminine enough and are seen as less likeable, the researchers say.

Dr Olivia O`Neill of George Mason University in Virginia, who led the study, said: "If they are seen to behave in a stereotypically male way, they may damage their chances of promotion, even if these traits are synonymous with successful managers."

For their study, the researchers asked 80 young men and women about their personality while they studied for a master`s degree in business administration.

Eight years later, they got back in touch with the subjects to find out how their careers were progressing and found that "macho" women who took an aggressive approach had been promoted less than more feminine sorts.

The bossy women who made a conscious effort not to appear too threatening by "self-monitoring" their behaviour had done better than those who had carried on regardless.

Some had been promoted five times, others just once or twice, Self-awareness -or the lack of it -didn`t affect the fledgling careers of men, according to the findings published in a journal of the British Psychological Society.