Women Leaders Offer Their Formula for Success

Four prominent women discussed success and power during today’s Executives’ Club of Chicago breakfast that was attended by more than a thousand women and a handful of lucky men, including me. 

Moderated by psychologist and consultant Gail Golden, the panel consisted of Tonise Paul, president and CEO of ad agency Energy BBDO; Anne Pramaggiore, president and COO of ComEd, and Sheli Rosenberg, of counsel to Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom.  

In the ad world, Tonise said she learned long ago that “to energize brands you need to energize people.”  Anne discussed the “tool box of power,” consisting of three motivational styles–directional, relationship and inspirational.  Noting that men still dominate most senior positions of power, Sheli said more men need to become comfortable mentoring women.   Here’s a summation of comments of panel members that explains their formulas for success:

  • Be really good.  As Tonise said, “85% isn’t good enough.”  Strive for excellence.
  • Make sure bosses know what you’re accomplishing (but don’t brag).  Supervisors can’t be expected to know what everyone is doing, so you must determine ways to make sure they’re aware of your contributions to the organization.
  • Know who you are.  Be true to your values and be resilient.  You can’t control certain things, but you can control how you respond to them. 

One thought on “Women Leaders Offer Their Formula for Success

  1. I think it is crucial to get both men’s and women’s viewpoints in an industry, so why don’t more men feel comfortable mentoring women?
    Also, I like the second piece of advice about making sure your bosses know what you’re accomplishing. I think people expect employers to know how good a job they do, like teachers do in school. It is important not be afraid to showcase your strengths and be proud of them, especially after graduation. I hope that I will take on that challenge when I enter the “real world” work force.

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