Handling Setbacks and Building ‘Resilient Muscle’

Portrait of Patricia BrownBy Patricia F. Brown, VP Underwriting Global Retail Markets, Liberty Mutual Insurance

I am often asked two questions: “What has led to your success in the commercial insurance industry?” and “How have you overcome setbacks/challenges?

My personal experience of growing up in the South, having parents and siblings who experienced Jim Crow and being the daughter of a Tuskegee Airmen set the foundation of who I am today. The richness of my childhood experiences and my belief systems have had an undeniable impact on me both personally and professionally. Moreover, my professional journey as an African-American woman has included both lows and highs. Read More

Posted in Speaker Articles, Life on Your Terms, Life Balance, Health & Wellness, Job Advancement Tagged , |

Holiday Survival Tips from Simple Habit’s Founder

Yunha Kim meditating in a white roomA Stanford B school dropout, Yunha Kim is on her second startup—and like most things that meet a real need, it’s genius. Called Simple Habit, the app is a “Spotify” for meditation, meaning it’s a platform for different experts to share their bite-size meditations and audio therapy sessions.

Kim had her Eureka moment after turning to meditation apps to cope with the stress of running her first company. “I got pretty tired of hearing the same voice over and over again,” she recalls. “It occurred to me that to listen to a new singer, I don’t go to another app. I go to a platform like Spotify, where I can find new artists as well as my favorites.”

Flash forward less than three years, and Kim has a huge hit on her hands. “Simple Habit has helped more than 2.8 million people relieve stress and anxiety, with an average of 30,000 new users joining the platform every week,” she says. What’s more, she just closed $10 million in her series A, after raising $2.8 million from seed investors.

Her advice for newbie entrepreneurs? “Taking care of yourself is critical,” Kim says. “When you’re building a business from scratch, you are the number one resource you have. You will work long days, and stress is inevitable, so it’s important to take a little time each day to step away, breathe and reset.”

Here, Kim’s four tips—and her Simple Habit audio recommendations—for surviving the holidays: Read More

Posted in Speaker Articles, Life on Your Terms, Life Balance, Health & Wellness Tagged , |

Real Advice for Women Seeking Mentors and Allies

Portrait of David SmithIf your mentors all look like you, you have a mentor problem. Same goes if they all have similar backgrounds and work histories or if you have only one—or none.

“Your mentors should be a diverse network,” says David Smith, an expert on gender workplace issues and co-author of Athena Rising: How and Why Men Should Mentor Women. “If they’re not, you’re missing out on key perspectives and information, and you’re probably not being challenged enough in your thinking.”

Of course, for women in male-dominated fields such as the military (Smith’s background), the problem isn’t having too many mentors who look like you (i.e., female). The problem is having a mentor, period. Read More

Posted in Speaker Articles, Career Choices, Communication Skills, Networking, Job Advancement Tagged , |

5 Tips to Feel More Comfortable at Networking Events

This is one thing Alice Rutkowski, an executive communication and presence coach who has worked with more than 8,000 executives over the past 20-some years, wishes everyone knew:

Body language reflects what you believe about yourself and others.

“Consciously and unconsciously, we are reading others and they are reading us all the time,” says Rutkowski, vice president of executive development at Sagin. “For example, whether you’re sitting or standing, crossing your legs can convey nervousness. It puts your body out of alignment, and being unbalanced isn’t conducive to feeling confident—and people can see that.” Read More

Posted in Speaker Articles, Marketing Yourself & Your Small Business, Communication Skills, Networking Tagged , |

What You Can Do to Foster a More Inclusive Workplace

By Christina Luconi, Chief People Officer, Rapid7

From our government to some of the most widely recognized companies in the world, the topic of diversity and inclusion are dominating our headlines. CEOs are making public statements about their efforts, including new approaches to long scrutinized practices in compensation, promotion and awareness. In other words, while we’ve been witness to a variety of organizations addressing some pretty intense public flogging, others are moving quickly in hopes of tackling the topic in a meaningful way before they face an issue.

Whether the company’s motivation is truly building a more inclusive workforce or just trying to avoid a lawsuit, there’s no ignoring this is a critical issue in today’s business landscape. And while this leaves consumers with a better understanding of where some of their favorite brands stand on this topic, it often leaves employees of all companies wondering, “What can I do to support these efforts?” Read More

Posted in Speaker Articles, Goals & Priorities, Success & Leadership, Innovation Tagged , |

Making It Work at Work Is a Family Affair

By Renee Connolly, Global Head of Communications and Corporate Responsibility, MilliporeSigma

After the loud “thump” comes an even louder cry. It’s 3:15 a.m. “I’ve got this…you have an important meeting today…get yourself a couple more hours,” one parent says to the other. 

Sound like a scene from a TV show? Or like one taken from your life?  

Unsettled nights are common among young families, but for an increasing number, what’s new are the roles partners play in making complex families work—for everyone. It’s taken time to acknowledge juggling both at home and work, and for many, this is a very personal situation that partners are grappling with. Read More

Posted in Speaker Articles, Career Choices, Life Balance, Goals & Priorities Tagged , |

How to Network When You’re Too Busy to Network

By Molly Brennan, Founding Partner, Koya Leadership Partners

We all know that networking is a key building block for professional advancement. But with the competing demands of personal and professional lives, networking takes time that many of us just don’t have. So, how do you network when you’re too busy to network?

Here are eight ways to increase and mobilize your network, strategically and purposefully, without clocking hours at meet-and-greets or informational meetings. Read More

Posted in Speaker Articles, Networking Tagged , |

Never Limit Yourself Out of Fear

By Jennifer Adams, CEO and Founder, Jennifer Adams Brands

What’s the most important life lesson I’ve learned? As the grateful owner of a flourishing home textile and furnishings business today, I’d say that the road to success is not always a straight path. My journey has been full of twists and turns—and what I call “moments of serendipity.” Read More

Posted in Speaker Articles, Job Advancement Tagged , |

Be Better at Making Decisions—and Sticking to Them

To err is human—and struggling to make up your mind is, too. “We all wrestle with making decisions, particularly when they have short-term costs and long-term benefits,” says Francesca Gino, a professor of business administration at Harvard Business School and author of Sidetracked: Why Our Decisions Get Derailed and How We Can Stick to the Plan.

People who seem to make executive calls with ease don’t have faster or bigger brains. They probably just know their brains better than the rest of us. Read More

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Update on Happiness (It’s All Good!)

Happiness is largely a choice. That may sound like magical thinking or like what no-guff grandparents meant when they said to buck up, but it’s actually the finding of a field of scientific study called positive psychology.

“Many people think they can’t be happy right now because of their biochemistry or their job or life situation, but research has shown that we are not just our genes and environment,” says Shawn Achor, author of The Happiness Advantage and Before Happiness and co-founder of the Institute for Applied Positive Research. “We have a different picture of what it is to be human. We can train our brain to become more optimistic and thus happier.” Read More

Posted in Speaker Articles, Life on Your Terms, Embrace the Unknown, Health & Wellness Tagged , |
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