The Art of Leadership for Women (and Men)


On Monday April 13th 2015, five amazing speakers got on the stage in Calgary, Alberta, Canada to share about their New York Times Bestselling books in The Art of Leadership for Women event. They spoke to an audience of more than 1500. There were mostly women in the room with a few very enlightened and smart men!

Who was on the roster:
Liz Wiseman, CEO in Silicon Valley and author of Rookie Smarts
Brene Brown, Professor of vulnerability and author of Daring Greatly
Tara Mohr, Women’s leadership expert and author of Playing Big
Liane Davey, VP at Knightsbridge and author of You First
And finally Martha Stewart touching on her new book Living the Good Long Life.

I was completely powered up and moved by these heavy hitting stars! I’ll cut to the chase and give you the most powerful points that I took away from each speaker.

Liz Wiseman:

  1. We are the smartest, most innovative and willing to take action when we’re completely stepping out in to the unknown.
  2. Our “knowing” and experience has us stop learning , stop trusting our gut, extinguishes curiosity and allows us to become resigned.
  3. We thrive with continued challenge and are ready for the next challenge far sooner than we think.
  4. More challenge does not mean more work – most of us feel overworked and underutilized.

Brene Brown

  1. You either get courage or comfort, you can’t have both and a courageous life far outweighs a comfortable one in rewards.
  2. If you’ve stepped into the arena, you’re going to get your ass kicked sooner or later.
  3. If you’re not in the arena, I’m not interested in your feedback.
  4. Our list of people whose opinions in our lives really matters should be short and not filled with “yes men” but with people who absolutely love us and challenge us regularly.

Tara Mohr

  1. Feedback only gives us information about the person delivering the feedback.
  2. We all have inner critics that show their faces in a multitude of ways, we must be aware of them, know that they will always be there and never let them have the reigns.
  3. Find your inner mentor and leverage your “left brain” type thinking in service of this inner mentor not as the slave to it (e.g. logical, reasoning, process oriented). She has a guided visualization to find this inner mentor in her book.

Liane Davey

  1. Dysfunctional teams are rampant and can be checked out (spectators), bobble heads (all yes men), toxic (back stabbing and gossiping) or crisis addicts (where clarity of roles only comes from crisis so they strive for bigger and bigger crises).
  2. It starts with any single one of us to let our voices be heard and create better teams at work – don’t just nod your head, back-stab or disengage! Say what others won’t say.
  3. Conflict is critically important and needs to be more accepted so diversity and unique contributions can shine through. It can be done well and respectfully.

Martha Stewart

  1. We are bigger than our mistakes and can make sure that the whole of our lives reflect what we really want to contribute.
  2. Her amazing family has kept her strong. Having a strong family that has your back and believes in you makes an enormous difference.
  3. Living the good long life means looking at all of your life, diet, exercise, sleep, relationships, community – all of it.
  4. Persevere with your ideas and always try new things everywhere you can.

I am impressed that such a great event was put on by volunteers and  just 7 amazing staff from this Toronto based company. I will definitely be watching for their future events! After I get through my new reading list that is.

Please let me know what you’ve been reminded of or discovered from these points. I’d love to know if this made a difference for you.

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Sarah Laughton

Photo on 2015-04-24 at 9.31 AM

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