Remodista's Breaking Glass Series


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We learned from successful female leaders in the Remodista Community: Estee Lauder, Oscar de la Renta, C. Wonder, Victoria's Secret, Pepsi, Sears Holding, LinkedIn and Winston Brands. They shared the challenges, obstacles, and cross road decisions that led these women to careers they are passionate about.

Are you currently working to get to the next level…or thinking about it? Great careers don’t find you, you create them! This panel got us moving in the right direction! We are inspired by their stories, successes, and roadblocks they experienced, in order to, reach their goals.

A professional photographer gave us tips and took our headshots to help us set the stage for getting to the next level at any level. Does your current “go-to” photo have the right pixels and sizing for digital marketing materials? First things first, get the right jpeg into your portfolio!

Published in: Education, Career, Business
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Remodista's Breaking Glass Series

  1. 1. Remodista’s Breaking Glass Series
  2. 2. Remodista is a power broker in connecting the most influential and solution oriented executives working in digital, social, and mobile commerce. It is a collaborative forum that brings together thought leaders, educates brands, and nurtures a global community. Cultivating diverse leadership and defining the consumer with mobility, are critical for US Retail growth, as we enter the next generation of human interaction. Remodista Mission
  3. 3. Elevating women globally is a core mission of Remodista.
  4. 4. Women Leaders Mentor Youth Nurture Globally Collaboration Inclusion Content Curation Sophisticated Commerce Education Community is Our Differentiator Cultivating Technology Think Tank
  5. 5. Ways to Get the Next Level at ANY Level 1. Understand your personal brand from a 360 degree view 2. Become a voice in the community where you have expertise 3. Contribute writing in your community when possible 4. Look for opportunities to publish your thoughts 5. When you get into the mid and senior level roles, consider negotiating writing and speaking privileges into your offers 6. Be prepared and look for opportunities to speak in front of your peers. You don’t want your first time to be in front of an audience of 300-3000 people 7. Seek mentors and professional coaches to take it to the executive level  coaching absolutely helps 8. Create your own opportunities and then shine a light on it 9. There’s no time for modesty, especially if no one is looking
  6. 6. Dan Millman on The Idea of Success Know your advisaries, then apply your will. Will is a faithful friend, at your side, in both sunlit days and dark nights of the soul, speaking quietly about what is important and good. Motivation is a welcome wind at your back that comes when you are more child-like. Many smart people fall by the wayside because they strive ONLY when they feel motivated. Successful people strive no matter what they feel by applying their will to overcome apathy, doubt and fear.
  7. 7. Tips on Taking the PERFECT Headshot Wikipedia defines a headshot as: “A headshot is a photographic technique where the focus of the photograph is a person’s face”. Headshots are a critical piece of many professionals PR packets, and you want to be prepared when you are offered opportunities to speak and publish. Relax a little, don’t force your smile or it will come through in the photo; leaving a little space between your top and bottom teeth (a pinky width) will help the smile look more genuine. Squinting your eyes a little will also help you come through more confident and natural in the photo. Rose Hamilton, EVP, Pet360
  8. 8. Melissa Lefere-Cobb Oscar de la Renta Have you gotten where you are with strategy, or did your career just happen? “When I was 16 years old I came to NYC, fell in love with the city and vowed I would make my way in the fashion industry. My mom met someone in the supermarket that had a daughter in the fashion industry and she became a mentor to me and told me about a one year program at FIT that I ended up attending. From there I aggressively pursued internships and continued to network and meet as many as possible. I can’t stress enough the importance of networking and keeping in contact with your mentors.” What would you tell your 25 year old self about your career path? “I would tell myself to listen more carefully, to be patient, and to realize that you need to embrace every opportunity—even if it doesn’t seem like you are learning at the time, you probably are!” Photo Source: Valerie Keast
  9. 9. Catherine Brodie C. Wonder What is/was your most challenging career obstacle? ‘The most challenging times in my career have been when we are launching websites. I launched 6 websites in 3 years and it was wild. Each launch has new obstacles that you need to overcome and the clock is always racing toward launch date. Trying to take a deep breath and prioritize the long list of launch items while being exhausted has definitely been the most challenging part of my career to-date. But, the end result has always made the long hours and hard work worth it!’ What was your most satisfying achievement to date? ‘Getting promoted to Director before the age of 30.’
  10. 10. Kim Leugers LinkedIn What is your view on taking risk? Any advice? “Take on the hard projects, fail fast & fail often. You learn not only from your successes, but also from your missteps.” What would you tell your 25-year-old self about your career path? “There is nothing you can’t learn, don’t be afraid of the unknown.”
  11. 11. JaKenna Gilbert Estee Lauder What was the most challenging obstacle in your career to date? “I was. I’ve always had a natural intuition with my work and I allowed this to guide myself through my career. However, as I’ve grown as a person in my career and in my industry, I’ve realized that a natural ability is not going to take me to the next level. Over the last few years, I’ve started constantly looking for ways to improve my skills and build upon my knowledge. Whether it be attending industry seminars, taking classes offered through Lauder or learning a language to try to understand another culture and market (currently studying Spanish!), I'm always looking for ways to both broaden and hone my skills.” Photo Source: Raydene Salinas, Photo Editor, Huffington Post
  12. 12. Jennifer Shonauer PEPSI What is your view on taking risk? Any advice? “I am definitely risk averse in my job, but you need to take risks to get where you want in your career.” What would you tell your 25-year-old self about your career path? “Be introspective  Keep going, you’ll be just fine!”
  13. 13. Catherine Brodie C. Wonder What is your view on taking risk? Any advice? ‘You never learn or get better at anything without taking risks. The first few times I spoke on a panel I was terrified. But, I realized the risk of putting myself in the spotlight helped me improve my skills. Presenting to our brand president was much easier after speaking in front of 300 people! My experiences speaking publicly have helped me become a better public speaker at work and life.... I knocked my last wedding speech out of the park. My advice is to go for it -- being pushed out of your comfort zone is generally good.” What would you like to tell your 25 year old self? “The grass always seems greener! Take your time in evaluating your current position and carefully vet new opportunities before transitioning. Don't make knee jerk decisions. In jobs, partnerships and life!”
  14. 14. Kim Leugers LinkedIn What is the most satisfying goal that you have reached in your career to date? “Being given the opportunity to enact change in the industry, and being respected for my professional opinion on the industry.” Have you gotten where you are with strategy or did it just happen for you? “My path is part by design (recognizing trends and taking the risk to invest in what I believe will be an important avenue) and part by opportunistic luck.”
  15. 15. JaKenna Gilbert Estee Lauder What is the most satisfying goal that you have reached in your career to date? “Hands down, working on ELC’s largest philanthropic program, the Breast Cancer Awareness Campaign. Breast cancer is so personal for every person and there are so many people who have been touched by breast cancer in some way. For the 2013 campaign, I was part of a small team that led the digital project from strategy to execution and it was some of the most grueling, yet rewarding work I've ever done. We produced a video that followed the lives of 3 breast cancer survivors, through diagnosis, to treatment, to spending time with their families, all along their journey. Standing side by side these woman, who have suffered through so much pain and are living embodiments of strength, completely changed my understanding of what true courage is. And knowing that the work I did touched thousands of people in such a positive and encouraging way has certainly been the highlight of my career. Truly inspiring.” Photo Source: Raydene Salinas, Photo Editor, Huffington Post
  16. 16. Alana Widdess Sears What is your view on taking risk? Any advice? “As the saying goes, "no risk, no reward". Ha ha.... I wish I truly felt this way. On the spectrum of risk aversion, I am probably more on the averse side of things than not. However, I challenge myself daily to do something that "scares" me. And it doesn't have to be monumental or earth shattering either! For example, in order to grow as a leader in a company it is increasingly important to trust your gut and have conviction in all of your actions, even when you are not 100% sure. So I might start with sending out a communication or leading a meeting without getting input or running something past my boss or peers first. I guess in someways, I am equating risk with self-confidence....both of which are super important!” What would you tell your 25-year-old self about your career path? “Remind myself, whenever I am feeling anxious about my career that when the timing is right, everything will work out the way it's supposed to.”
  17. 17. JaKenna Gilbert Estee Lauder What is your view on taking risk? Any advice? “I absolutely believe in taking risk. But I also believe that taking risk doesn’t necessarily mean being reckless and/or naive. There’s no reason why we can’t live for today and plan for tomorrow. My advice is to stay open to opportunities (as you’ll never know when a door might open) and when one comes along, try to be as prepared as possible to jump in full force.” Photo Source: Raydene Salinas, Photo Editor, Huffington Post
  18. 18. Melissa Lefere-Cobb Oscar de la Renta What is the most satisfying goal that you have reached in your career to date? “Working alongside one of the industry's greats-- Oscar de la Renta! I pinched myself the first time he asked my opinion on something and knew how hard I had to work to gain his trust and validate the new merchandising department that I founded.” Are you a risk taker? What is your advice on taking risk? “My advice is go for it! I moved to NYC from a small town in Michigan two weeks after I graduated from college. I didn't even have an apartment but knew I needed to take a leap of faith and everything else would sort itself out..and it did!” Photo Source: Valerie Keast
  19. 19. Alana Widdess Sears What was the most challenging obstacle in your career to date? “Right now! Earlier in my career, although I moved through different roles/companies, I was within the same industry, making it relatively easy to craft my "story" and career progression. I then went back to business school, which proved to be the impetus for my move into a new industry - retail. Even though I was both a career and industry "switcher", I was fortunate enough to be at a top business school where I could leverage my network and career resources as a catalyst for my transition. Interestingly, I now find myself at a juncture where I've been in a new industry AND function (which I love) for about 3 years....but at this point in my career, 3 years does not necessarily scream "tenure". So I am spending a lot of time networking, journaling - looking inward - to figure out not only how to re-brand myself, but also connect the dots in what on paper might look like a somewhat disjointed career path.”
  20. 20. Kim Hansen Winston Brands What is your view on taking risk? Any advice? “I'm a bit risk averse. I have backed away from some projects because I valued the security of a steady paycheck. However, my family did start a restaurant, which is one of the riskiest businesses there is. My advice is too take risk, but do your homework. I started a restaurant years ago, without restaurant experience, but I made sure that before going in, I fully understood the restaurant profit model. It was invaluable to have planning tools at my disposal for my new venture.” What would you tell your 25-year-old self about your career path? The things I would tell my self are: "Relax, you've got this" "Seek feedback from your co-workers on all levels"
  21. 21. JaKenna Gilbert Estee Lauder Have you gotten where you are with strategy or did it just happen for you? My career journey has been a combination of strategy and being open to opportunities. I started my career in digital as a community manager for Volkswagen (and that was before social media was taken that seriously by any brand) and having that executional and community building experience was important as a base, but I knew that my true skills would be sharpened on a strategy level. So, when I made the move to the Audi team and eventually, to another agency, I made sure my experience was centered around digital strategy. And as I navigated the agency lifestyle, I understood that my next move would need to be at a brand, where I could make a difference in house. And sure enough, as soon as I realized this, Estee Lauder contacted me about a position that my background was absolutely perfect for. They needed someone who could work with multiple brands, understand social from the ground up and who could communicate and understand the higher level marketing objectives needed to build successful digital presences. It was a perfect fit. Photo Source: Raydene Salinas, Photo Editor, Huffington Post
  22. 22. Kim Hansen Winston Brands Have you gotten where you are with strategy or did it just happen for you? “I would say that the strategy was all about understanding what I enjoy and what I am good at. As I gained work experience, I set goals for the future, and so was able to choose to take advantage of opportunities that would lead to attaining those goals. I always looked for opportunities that would enable me to learn and grow. For example, I left the independence of my own company, to head up an e-commerce business because I wanted to have those experiences. My success came from being an on-going orientation towards learning and understanding, as well as being results oriented, focused and credible.”
  23. 23. Thanks to Our Community Partners!
  24. 24. ELEVATE, EDUCATE, + MENTOR Kelly Stickel President + Global Community Builder Remodista 312-371-9302 I Skype: kelly.stickel