The yoga class I took just before last night’s State of the Union (SOTU) address wiped me out. I fell asleep immediately afterward. Which is good because I had a chance to think overnight about the parts that resonated most with me.

I’ve been tough on the president in the past, disappointed with his timidity and unwillingness to set a big bold agenda.

The other good thing about writing the day after is that others have fact checked. And the de rigeur liberal critique as well as Sen. Ted Cruz’s (R-TX) really awful other-party rebuttal have been duly hashed and rehashed.

With the benefit of reflection, here are my three favorite parts of the speech.

Read More

I loved this blog post by business strategist and founder of S2 Groupe Selena Soo  so much that I asked her if I could republish it here on 9 Ways.

What crying experiences do you have to share? Do you agree with Selena’s reasons why she says it’s OK?

Last summer, my friend introduced me to a potential client (whom I’ll refer to as “Ryan”). Ryan was a highly-respected entrepreneur who had built multiple million-dollar businesses. He was funny, quirky, and visionary. I thought we were a match made in business heaven.
Ryan and I would talk on the phone and on Skype. I sent him five pages of my ideas, and in our next conversation, he hired me on the spot. I was on cloud nine and excited to get started, and then the next day he broke up with me. Ryan told me that things were moving too quickly. “You don’t just marry the first person you date,” he explained.

Ryan said that he would be talking to several other PR and marketing firms. He wanted to make an objective, informed decision. I told him I understood. I thanked him for his honesty.

When he visited New York a few weeks later, we met up for coffee at the Ace Hotel. Then we walked over to Madison Square Park. We sat next to the fountain, talked about our Myers-Briggs personality types, and then he proceeded to break my heart. “I think you’re great,” he explained, “but these are my reservations about hiring you…”

Read More

Look who picked me up. Come join us and tweet your opinions at the #InterGenFem tweet chat 1/31 at 2pm eastern. Read the details below:

Intergenerational feminism.

Does it exist? Can we do a better job?

Why does working together across differences (generation is just one of many, including race, class, gender, sexuality, ability) matter for the cultural and political goals feminists are looking to achieve?

These conversations keep happening, and the idea for this TweetChat grew out of a great conversation that happened spontaneously on Twitter between @AndreaPlaid, @erintothemax, @ShelbyKnox, @StephHerold, @veronicaeye and @WentRogue. Along the way we picked up @GloriaFeldt and now we’re hoping to pick up YOU (yes, YOU are enthusiastically invited!) to join us for a broader conversation that is intended to be productive, solutions-oriented and totally helpful to your personal and professional endeavors to realize justice in this lifetime.

Some of the themes to discuss:

  • 1. “Young feminism” – what does it mean?
  • 2. Organizational feminism – what is and isn’t connecting with different age groups?
  • 3. How does race and racial privilege intersect with intergenerational issues in the movement?
  • 4. What is the unfinished business of feminism?
  • 5. What does sharing power look like?
  • 6. What can we all do to better support each other?

Is there more that needs to be discussed? Good. That’s another reason for you to join, so you can bring it up.

TweetChat is Thursday, Jan. 31. Use the hashtag #InterGenFem.

#InterGenFem + YOU = Join In!

Be there 2-3 p.m. and tell your friends.

Read More

I meet the most fascinating people when I speak to groups! Lifestyle brand maven Claudia Chan [LINK]  invited me to be part of a panel at Anheuser Busch Women in Beer [LINK to event post] in (of course) St. Louis. There, I met this amazing woman who went from being an abandoned child in South Korea to running her own construction company in. I’m inspired and think you will be too!

GF: The first question because I am fascinated with women’s relationship with power is this: When did you know you had the power to_____? You fill in the blank. 

Describe the moment or series of events that let you know you had the power to_____. What did it feel like? 

NSB: Assert myself.

I realized I had this “power” when I was around 16 years old and very active in 4-H on a state level. I decided to run for state treasurer which meant, I was to give a campaign speech to an audience of about 500 in the Jesse Auditorium of the University of Missouri campus. When I started speaking, it was the first time I could hear myself outside of my own ears. I did not recognize the voice, the tone, and especially the confidence I heard. In case you are wondering, I did win!1990 4-H State Council Jesse Auditorium of the University of Missouri campus.

GF: Tell a little about your background, your family and how you grew up, and what led you to your current work.

Read More

The stories we tell ourselves about ourselves define us and how we engage with the world. It’s time for women to write ourselves a new narrative, so when asked to write a piece for the fabulous new “Kardashian free” women-owned and focused website Vitamin W (you may recall the “She’s Doing It” column on Amy-Willard Cross who created the site), I decided to put this idea out to you.

fork-in-the-road-condrenJudging from the unusually large number of tweets and retweets, it has hit a chord.  Here’s the link to the original post on Vitamin W.

I want to start a conversation that will lead to specific initiatives of all kinds—social, political, workplace, personal relationships. Let me know what you think, and what initiatives you’d like to see.  I’d very much appreciate your comments, shares, and tweets.

With a virtual thud, the Catalyst 2012 Census of Fortune 500 companies hit my e-mailbox:

NEW YORK (December 11, 2012)—Despite high-profile news about gender gaps, equal pay, and women on boards, once again the needle barely budged for women aspiring to top business leadership in corporate America, according to the 2012 Catalyst Census: Fortune 500 Women Board Directors and 2012 Catalyst Census: Fortune 500 Executive Officers and Top Earners.

Ouch.

Read More

Who needs the fiscal cliff stress we’ve been getting starting out the new year? Mika Bzrezinski slammed Congress and President, says women negotiators would solve fiscal cliff.  I tend to agree. But, meanwhile we have a brave new year to embrace to the full.

One of my favorite leadership coaches for women (or fem-evangelist as she describes herself), Ann Daly, asked me and a number of my women’s advocate sheroes to tell her their wishes for women in 2013. Then she was kind enough to allow me to repost the results, the original of which appeared on Ann’s blog on New Year’s Day.

Please share: what are your wishes for women in 2013?

toastglasses

Happy New Year! At this time of renewal, I’m reflecting on what we can achieve together as women. And how we can help each other as women. So I asked my favorite women’s advocates, “What do you wish for women in 2013?” What would you add to the list?

Several decades ago, my cousin Chris gave me the following advice: “Remember to laugh out loud and make your own luck.” I have often marveled at just how challenging that is to do, but every day I strive to do both.
Janet Hanson
CEO and Founder, 85 Broads

I wish for women the collective will to hold elected officials’ feet to the fire on issues that really matter to us. After this election, it’s clear that women’s votes brought them into this world, and that women voters can also kick them out!
Lisa Maatz
Director of Public Policy & Government Relations, American Association of University Women

Read More

Happy New Year! Time to pull out that spanking new calendar and start filling in 2013’s highlights.

Women’s History Month—March—is always a big highlight for me. I blog almost every day. Or when I’m smart, I recruit fabulous guest posters, like Liz O’Donnell and Deborah Siegel.

Why? Let’s face it—history has largely been defined through the male lens, recorded by male pens, with men as the main protagonists, and women, if noticed at all, in supporting roles. As the saying goes, you can’t be what you can’t see.

The converse—you can aspire to that which you can imagine—is why I created six new speeches for Women’s History Month, March 2013. I had fun cooking up these new ideas to make women’s history interesting, relevant, and inspiring to corporate, professional, civic, college, and nonprofit groups of all kinds:

—“The Power of Sheroes: Why Women Want Role Models, Mentors, and Sponsors, and How to Get Them”

—“Remember the Ladies: 3 Surprising Mistakes of the Women’s Movement and the Leadership Lessons They Can Teach Us”

—“On the Waves: Celebrating Top 10 Highlights of Women’s Advancement – and Envisioning the Journey Still Ahead”

—“Is This the End of Men or the Beginning of Women?”

—“What Will It Take for Women to Reach Parity in Leadership?”

—“Seriously, Henry Higgins? Must a Woman Be More Like a Man to Succeed?”

All my presentations are customized to address the group’s goals, and they can be delivered as keynotes or accompanied by a 9 Ways Leadership Power Tool Workshop.

Last fall, I taught my Arizona Sate University course “Women, Power, and Leadership” online for the first time. I had a chance to learn webinar skills. If you are interested in exploring a digital version of one of these speeches, we can talk about that option.

Read More

On Thursday, December 6, I’ll be delivering a No Excuses Power Tools speech and mini-workshop at the amazing Massachusetts Conference for Women in Boston.

I’m told they expect over 7000 women this year, making it one of the largest women’s conferences in the country—and I think it will be among the most exciting.

Other speakers   include former Ogilvy and Mather CEO Charlotte Beers , vulnerability scholar Brene Brown, and actor Kristin Chenowith who starred in one of my all-time fave Broadway shows, “Wicked,” among many other roles.

Come if you can, and if you do, please stop by and say “hello.”  Even if you can’t, consider this Power Tools Worksheet my gift of intention to you for your “power to” do whatever you want to achieve.)  Bookmark it so you can reuse it any time you need to think through a problem or plan to achieve a goal.  And if you need a quick refresher on the 9 Ways Power Tools, here’s a one-page summary.

Read More

I met Juliet Asante through a most remarkable friend, Eva Haller. Eva can always be counted on to be surrounded by people who are doing amazing, significant things for others in this world, and Juliet is no exception. So I was thrilled when this media entrepreneur and activist, the founder of Eagle Productions Ltd, (an events and communications company; developing and aggregating content for multiple platforms; with operations in a number of African countries), agreed to answer a few questions.

I think you’ll be inspired and agree that Juliet is definitely a woman who is Doing It!

 

Gloria Feldt: When did you know you had the power to_____?

Juliet Asante: I knew I had the power to change my world and make a difference when I, (as an African girl, at a time when not many people dared) was able to raise money to start my first television show; having started out with only a cell phone and absolutely no money or guidance.

GF: Describe the moment or series of events that let you know you had the power to:

JA: My first major event on my path was getting the part in an HBO movie that starred Omar Epps. “Deadly Voyage,” a true story based in Africa, was auditioned for by the ‘best’ in the industry… and I got the role I auditioned for. This gave me the confirmation and credibility I needed at the time to explore my talents.

The second event I remember, was winning the writing competition to produce a road show for a product to Unilever, and producing this while in my final year of University in another city. I commuted for 8 hours between two cities in every 24 hours for my entire final year at school.

I felt powerful. I felt my mental limitations drop away. I remember feeling like I could do it and I could see the world opening up to me. I also felt that my path was going to be a one of resistance, as I had already begun to see that in many ways, but I knew I’d find the strength to move on. I just knew….

GF: Tell a little about your background, your family and how you grew up, and what led you to your current work.

Read More

Recently, I sat down with Liz Dennery Sanders of She Brand who shares the secrets of successful branding with women entrepreneur, coaches and consultants, saying “those who put this secret to work in their business never have to worry where their next client is coming from.”

In Liz’s SheBrand SuperStar series, she features female entrepreneurs “who are out there in the trenches each and every day, making things happen and affecting other people’s lives for the better.”

Please enjoy this reprint of her interview.

Name: Gloria Feldt

Occupation: Speaker, Author, World Changer

1. What are three words that best describe your personal brand?

Read More