Meet a Ladybadass: Emerald Archer – Researcher, Leader, Change-Maker

Imagine for a second you’re meeting someone for the first time. You’ve been introduced by a friend (thanks, Brady) and your preparation work has you just a little nervous. You’ve read words like “military” and “Ph.D.” and “guns,” but you’re also intrigued by words like “gender” and “stereotype.” What picture do you have in your head?

 I did. And when Dr. Emerald Archer walked in the door, I saw a stunning sunshine-filled California girl.

 We grabbed a coffee, and we started to talk. She’s warm and humble. She’s kind and engaging. She’s intelligent and powerful. Emerald is SUCH a strong manifestation of a ladybadass. Continue reading “Meet a Ladybadass: Emerald Archer – Researcher, Leader, Change-Maker”

Meet a Ladybadass: Jessica Shor – Mentor, Pragmatist, and Advocate

Over on our #ladybadass sister-site, we highlight many of the fearless, courageous, and inspiring ladies in business and in life around the world. We’re taking this idea a step further and finding out what it is that motivates and inspires these phenomenal women.

… and by the way, privacy is dead. Deal with it.

Overcoming challenges and hardships have set a blueprint of tenacity and grit for Jessica Shor from the earliest age: “Growing up without any means at all. Struggling with my mom being a single parent, not having any money, having to work a million jobs from the age of 12.” She realizes that the quest for  “financial stability and support is a pretty fundamental color in my life.” This adversity also motivates her passion for mentorship. “Most of what I do for myself and others with mentoring with WILPower and Hipower is aimed at ensuring all women have the ability to create their own financial freedom and independence, a sense of security.” Continue reading “Meet a Ladybadass: Jessica Shor – Mentor, Pragmatist, and Advocate”

A dream is a wish your heart makes

I’ve spent the last couple of weeks thinking that I should write a 2017 End of Year article. I thought about giving sage advice like “10 things you can do to make 2018 amazing” or “My New Year’s resolutions” or something along those lines. All these ideas seem a bit done and dull. When I have writer’s block, I go out to talk to the people for inspiration. “The people” being my awesome #ladybadass friends who are a veritable buffet of brilliant ideas.

We have the ever fabulous Maria Sipka who picks an intention word for each year and tries to live it each and every day. Her 2017 word was Unleashed. I’m super excited to hear what her 2018 word is going to be.

I also had lunch with the very thoughtful and inspiring Laura Froelich who, when I posed the question, cooly reminded me that she didn’t ever do “New Years” things. She just makes a decision and starts. I am in constant awe of this woman’s decisiveness.

Honestly, I think they’re both brilliant plans, and you can stop reading now. Do one of those items, and I assure you 2018 will be a banner year. Seriously.

But of course, I have another thought, another strategy to make 2018 the best year ever. It’s based on my most significant learning experience from 2017. Let me explain. Continue reading “A dream is a wish your heart makes”

Do you see a new diversity gap widening in front of you?

I sent the following email to a couple of respected male advisors this past week. I asked these gentlemen, leaders in our industry, specifically as I was curious as to their response.

“So of course I’m up to shenanigans as always and would love your feedback/thoughts on the below. As always it’s surrounding my desire to help elevate women. I’m trying to figure out if I’m not seeing reality because I’m in a bit of a bubble, or if others are seeing the same thing I’m seeing.

So what am I seeing?

There’s a whole new set of technology exploding: Blockchain, Cryptocurrencies, Machine Learning, AI, VR, 3D printing, and the list goes on. These innovations are creating the same wild and out-there conversations I heard back in the mid-90’s when the internet was first being used in the mainstream marketplaces.

What I experienced in the 90’s, when it came to women and their opportunity to be part of the “building” discussion, is happening again today. There aren’t many women in the room. And because (most) women are not learning about, and discussing, and playing with, these new technologies they’re not part of the conversation.

As they’re not part of the conversation, they’re not part of the initial building phases. I’m worried that this will mean another round of technologies built without the diverse perspective of women. And from this, industry’s goal to have more women be part of the leadership team will be kneecapped again. There’s a new gap.

Is it me? Or are you seeing this too?

Curious as always, Jo.” Continue reading “Do you see a new diversity gap widening in front of you?”

Do women empty the bank on their relationship capital?

I’ve been floating an idea recently about the concept of “relationship capital.” I honestly want to know if you think I’m nuts or if the idea resonates.

Let me start by explaining what I mean by “relationship capital” and what you do with it.

Someone, usually in a significantly more powerful/senior position to you, decides to put his reputation on the line for you.

For instance:

  • Hiring you when you don’t have the experience and/or someone else isn’t a fan.
  • Giving you opportunities to work on projects that are outside of your usual scope of responsibility.
  • Speaking on your behalf in a room that you’re not in.
  • Pushing someone forward rather than just opening the door.

This is beyond mentoring. This is someone making a bet; a bet on you and your future capabilities. Continue reading “Do women empty the bank on their relationship capital?”

You did good.

I don’t know about the rest of you, but I’m a bit overwhelmed with all the destruction so close to home. We’ve had four (or is it five now?) major hurricanes drowning or demolishing everything in their paths, another lunatic with a gun, and now friends who have lost their homes in the Northern California wildfires. Don’t get me started with #45. While I’m not suffering like those directly impacted by these horrific events, the hurt (and sometimes anger) I feel for them is forming a permanent crease in my brow. More importantly, I can feel the negative tenor of these events spilling over into my day to day life.

This angry, frustrated, sad, worried, overwhelmed, and powerless person is not who I am.

I strive to be the eternal optimist with a healthy dash of practicality.

I’m the person you sit next to when you have a kernel of a good idea because I’ll listen, cheer you on, and banish any self-doubt, so you can make something incredible happen. Better yet, I’ll help you make your idea into something even better than you thought it might be.

I’m the person who’ll hear what you’re trying to accomplish and identify someone in my network who might be able to manifest your dreams. (Y’all are awesome friends by the way.)

I’m the person who’ll pour a large glass of rose (or whatever your beverage of choice) and empathise with you about how your current project makes you feel lonely, exhilarated, like you’re not good enough, empowered, and any other dramatic word you can come up with.

Current events have been making is hard for me to be me. I decided to do something about it. I thought I’d share what I’m doing in case you were interested in joining in.

I’m spreading awesome wherever I can. Make someone else feel great about themselves. Make them feel like they matter, if only for a moment.

How on earth can you do that? Let me give you an example from the person who reminded me of this simple and powerful act.

I won’t go into the boring details, but I received an email back about a collaborative idea from a fellow Ladybadass, Sali Christeson. She chose the following words she used to open her email:

“Hi!!! Love this email so much,…”

I read it and was immediately in a good mood. Just a little sprinkle of kind words and the whole conversation went from the usual back and forth to include a smile. I felt great and that, in Sali’s world, I mattered.

It’s that simple. I was inspired.

So I asked myself, how can I manifest this little dash of awesome into someone else’s day?

Here are some ideas:

  • I emailed back someone who connected me, and the subject line of the email was: “You did a good thing.” In the body of the email, I went on to thank her and tell her why.
  • I signed off multiple emails today with the sincere words, “You Are Awesome.”
  • I texted a couple of friends an amusing .gif about their fabulousness with the words “just because” typed underneath.

You might be thinking I’m a bit self-congratulatory here. However, these little explosions of awesome are not about me. It’s about the other person. I expect nothing in return. But here’s the secret: It’s in the doing that I’m feeling better.

Spreading awesome to others is helping me deal with all that awfulness I keep seeing.

If you’re feeling the same way I am and want to do more, then find your way to spread happiness. You’ll find it is contagious and cathartic.

You did good.