Newsmaker, commentator, best-selling author and co-author of Leading Women, Gloria Feldt tells women that we already have what we need to achieve parity in leadership and earnings right now. We don’t need to pace ourselves, go with the flow and wait until 2095 (as predicted by the World Economic Forum) to become full and equal partners in world leadership. Gloria co-founded Take the Lead, a 501(c)3 foundation with investment banker Amy Litzenberger to create a synergistic program of training, mentoring, role modeling , and thought leadership needed to accelerate progress toward leadership parity. With the launch in 2014, which streamed to half-a-million people world-wide and packed Arizona State’s field house, TakeTheLeadWomen was off and running. #25not95 and the close the gap app became the rallying cries to prepare, develop, inspire and propel women toward the leadership equality they deserve.
Women, Own Your Power!
Gloria’s best-selling book, No Excuses: 9 Ways Women Can Change How We Think About Power, explains Gloria’s central message that women already have the tools they need to do so. Culture has taught women that power means “power over,” a concept that has been drummed into feminine consciousness through domestic abuse and heavy-handed masculine leadership. This has made women feel like victims, not owners of power.
When women re-think power as the “power to” accomplish their goals, they want to own it and use it in an entirely different way. Through her workshops, “9 Leadership Power Tools” Gloria conveys the message that when women embrace this new positive, expansive and innovative view of power with intention, they can crack the code of implicit gender bias and the fear that there’s not enough pie to go around .
The Infinite Pie—More Means More
In this conversation Gloria talks about her concept of The Infinite Pie. There is no finite pie of power or resources unless you think that way. Actually, the more there is, the more there is. And Gloria is proving it by sharing her life’s work. She has shared her signature core curriculum, the “9 Leadership Power Tools,” with other capable women trainers. At this time, there are 35 Leadership Ambassadors certified to deliver the training, with a goal of 15 more by year’s end.
Gloria stresses the fact that women are better together. When we collaborate and work in a sisterhood, we strengthen, not only our intentions, but our power to make positive change in the world. The partnership of Take the Lead and WomenConnect4Good is a perfect example of that. Both Dr. Nancy and Gloria agree that it’s inspirational to work together and it feels liberating to reach out and help others up the ladder.
One Small Thing A Day
Gloria said she would not be where she is today without the help of one woman. Then she told the story of Mildred, who wrote a letter of recommendation for Gloria without being asked and from her death-bed. At that point, Gloria had no work experience or boss, other than Mildred. While we’re all trying to create big change in giant steps, we should remember that doing one small thing a day could completely change the trajectory of someone’s life. We never know what we have created over time with a simple gesture of generosity and a hand-up.
New Programs from Take the Lead
Besides creating the Leadership Ambassador program, Gloria describes several new programs offered by Take the Lead. They have recently partnered with GlassBreakers to create a mentorship program. It’s free and Glassbreakers will match you with a mentor or a mentee through some simple criteria. The goal is to create one million mentors in a year and she’s confident they will achieve it.
Gloria also invited everyone to participate in this week’s live Virtual Happy Hour on Wednesday 11/9/16, which will address the 2016 election results and the importance of having women lead in the top levels of government. These take place the 2nd Wednesday of the month and usually feature an inspiring expert woman or man who provides guidance. Participants can chat or tweet their questions and comments.
There are many more opportunities and resources, online and in person available through Take the Lead. Listen to this conversation for more ideas and check out TaketheLeadWomen.com website, social media and YouTube for more information.