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Is it okay to cry at work?

tough situation at work

"Sometimes situations in the workplace are very stressful or emotional. Is it okay to cry at work?"

We are wired emotionally — both men and women. As little girls, we are taught to cry as a way to express ourselves. But crying is not a language that the dominant group (white men) understands.

If you need to cry, then cry. Don't, however, make that a default pattern. Don't get the label of not being able to control your emotions. In the right environment, yes, cry. If you're a credible leader with a solid brand, if your people admire you, they'll respond well.

For heaven's sake, the president of the United States wept openly. There is great strength found in emotion. It just has to be channeled in the right and appropriate venues.

Trudy Bourgeois is founder and CEO of The Center for Workforce Excellence and the author of four books, including the most recent, Equality: Courageous Conversations about Women, Men and Race To Spark A Diversity and Inclusion Breakthrough. She previously held senior leadership roles in the consumer goods industry. 

Views expressed in blogs, posts and user comments are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Network of Executive Women or its Officers, Board members and corporate partners.