Impostor syndrome is a psychological occurrence in which an individual doubts their skills, talents, or accomplishments and has a persistent internalized fear of being exposed as a fraud. Many people around the world, regardless of age, deal with impostor syndrome at some point in their life

We recently asked our Lenovo recruitment team (Krista Jaeckel, Erin Jernigan, and Jane Shephard) to share how they deal with impostor syndrome. Their answers are below.

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How do you deal with impostor syndrome?

Krista Jaekel:

Be confident in yourself and what you are capable of. We have all been the new graduate, the new hire, the least experienced on our team. However, with time and experience you will no longer be that person. Know that you are capable of doing the know and be gentle on yourself as you take the time to learn.

Erin Jernigan:

  • Have a mantra.
  • Keep a running list of accomplishments in a notebook or word doc and refer to it when you deal with imposter syndrome.

Jane Shephard:

I reflect on my positive impacts I have had on the business and candidates.

Want more resources and expert advice for how to deal with impostor syndrome?

    -    Read Impostor syndrome exists everywhere by Derron Payne


  • I'm trying to transition from auto tech and oilfield over to coding via a bootcamp. I have never done anything like this before. I didn't grow up around computers and haven't used them for more than web browsing. So impostor syndrome is quite real.

  • I think ALL of us have felt the impostor syndrome at any point during our life, even the most successful people you've ever met are dealing with it. All these are good advice, never forget what you have already done and that you are capable of much more!

  • Some interesting tips.
    Though honestly, I don't think they would help me very much. Especially in the beginning, without actual experience one has no way to judge what kind of "impacts" one has on the business. Which  by the way can also be negative.

    I find the best thing to get past imposter syndrome, providing someone feels like that (and I have met coworkers who definitely should have based on their work though they were the ones who seemed to thing they were the best thing ever)  is experience.
    Experience, and if one can find it honest feedback from someone more experienced. Though that can be difficult to find. In part because unless feedback is part of the experienced person's job they probably don't really have the time to take away from their own job.

  • It think it's normal to believe that people with experience are much smarter than they really are. Expertise more often than not is a result of experience, so focus on your capability to learn and have faith that you'll get there in time, too. 

  • Confidence in yourself is such a powerfull tool; but one failure can cause that tower of confidence to fold and fall.   One thing that I always remember, is that most of the things that I have learned is related to a fauilure.   Unless you test the limiits, and suffer some failures, you'll never know how far, how fast, how long it takes to do something.   So, keep your confidence, despite those failures, but learn from the failures so that you don't repeat them in the future. 

  • Good Ideas!

  • Definitely going to read the reference above.  I’ve read that even recognized leaders in their fields battle Imposter Syndrome, so maybe it’s not always a bad thing?  I can’t grow if I always think I’m the smartest one in the room, and I can’t learn if I feel hopelessly “less than.”  So maybe it’s about finding a middle ground that doesn’t feel mediocre - just knowing I have something to offer and something to learn.

  • Why not! Meditation can help.

  • Confidence is something you gain from experience.  But it's also something that you can lose quickly in situations that you are not in control.  Just remember that you do bring value and have unique thoughts; and no matter the outside stress or bullying, that you can control how you respond: Choose confidence over fear.