At I Want Her Job we love a good startup story, and we like one that involves two friends destined to meet and create a business even more. One day in early 2016, Annie Dean called her friends – asking them to direct her to the smartest women they knew. As fate would have it, a few friends directed Annie to Anna Auerbach, a woman described by mutual friends as a “force of intelligence” and full of energy. Over a phone conversation, Anna shared her thoughts on a business that would help create a marketplace for women seeking flexible job opportunities. Annie was instantly hooked on the idea, and this first phone call ignited a passion and partnership between the two dynamic women.
The idea became Werk, a business dedicated to helping women thrive in the workforce and find flexible job opportunities. Since launching earlier this year, Werk has received funding, created a marketplace for flexible jobs with over 60 companies – including Facebook, Uber and Samsung – and has hired a staff of four and developed a new product.
Anna’s Harvard MBA and McKinsey background, combined with Anna’s experience in practicing law, they say, has given them a distinct advantage during their research, analysis and business planning phases for Werk. As self-professed data geeks, Annie and Anna knew that data was showing them a business opportunity for a site like Werk was there. And as ambitious young mothers to toddlers with demanding professional careers, Anna and Annie understand firsthand the challenges women face when they don’t want – or cannot take a break – from working. In fact, research shows more than 30% of women end up leaving the workforce after having children. And, of those that left, 70% say they would have stayed in their jobs if they had been given more flexibility. Furthermore, a Bain research study has shown that women value flexibility more than titles, location and pay. The data, as well as common sense, shows the supply is there, and from a business perspective, flexibility lowers costs and helps companies recruit and retain top talent.
We’re thrilled to share episode 33 of I Want Her Job: The Podcast with you. We hope the story of Annie and Annie inspire you to shift your own thoughts on the work/life culture.
In episode 32 of I Want Her Job: The Podcast, we speak with Lauren Collins, staff writer at The New Yorker, and author of When In French: Love In A Second Language. The book, which is a memoir of falling in love, learning a new language and adjusting to a new culture, was recently selected as a “Notable Book of 2016” by The New York Times. And it’s easy to see why.
With plenty of humor and fascinating details on linguistics and French culture, in the book Lauren recounts her journey of learning and adjusting to a life in France. In her interview, she shares the story of the one decision that changed her life. Weeks before her 30th birthday, Lauren decided to shake things up, requesting to work for The New Yorker from London. It was during this fateful trip that, in a decidedly American way, Lauren walked over and introduced herself … to her future husband!
Eventually moving with him to Paris, When In French chronicles the cultural adjustments and clashes of living in a new country. Listen in to hear more about Lauren’s journey, details on her sought-after job at The New Yorker and more.
Felena Hanson was just another woman working from home when she came up with a brilliant idea. While working at home for eight years, she missed having a sense of community and often time struggled to focus. The options in the market at the time, while uber-hip and high tech, were lacking an environment that felt beautiful and clean to her. She realized she was craving a coworking space designed by women, for women, so Felena embarked on creating what she couldn’t find.
And now, five years later, Hera Hub is the first international coworking and shared office space for women (though open to men as well) from Washington, D.C. to Stockholm, Sweden. And although the company specializes in providing inspired spaces for women to work from, the company also hosts training sessions on planning, accounting and other business services – providing continuous support and advice for its members. They also offer an endless supply of coffee and wine! After all, Felena says, in Hera Hub spaces women are truly trying to help one another.
“I wanted to create something that was bigger than myself, and bigger than the city that I’m in,” Felena says. “ … It’s an ecosystem of support, collaboration and community.”
In episode 31 of I Want Her Job: The Podcast, Editor and Host Polina Selyutin speaks with Felena about launching a business, making mistakes and building a community.
Judy Robinett’s story begins in Franklin, Idaho. As a young girl who was bullied during junior high, Judy felt uncomfortable at social events, which she would often arrive late to and leave early from. Until her 40s, she felt shy, awkward, not good enough, not cute enough and not educated enough.
Today, however, Judy’s life paints a different picture. As a well-known and highly respected investor and advisor, she is known as the woman with a titanium Rolodex. If you’re curious about how she made the leap from insecure young woman to confident businesswoman, then you will want to hear episode 30 of I Want Her Job: The Podcast.
In today’s show, Judy shares how an attitude of, “Keep your head down; work hard; and wait your turn,” turned into advice worth tossing. She read Dale Carnegie’s How To Win Friends And Influence People and immediately realized that it was actually those leaving early on Friday to socialize at the golf club were the ones getting ahead at work. After reading this book, she began to make intentional choices in how she interacted with others.
This fresh outlook aids Judy to this day. When she meets someone new, Judy immediately begins looking for ways she can help, which she explains further in her step-by-step approach in her book on networking – How To Be A Power Connector. In today’s episode, Editor and Host Polina Selyutin discusses the art of connection with Judy and tips that can help you develop your own titanium Rolodex.
According to Shopify’s Director of Talent Acquisition Anna Lambert, the recruiting industry is broken. And, we happen to agree. While most companies utilize a traditional process for filtering out candidates based on a list of experience and requirements, Shopify does things very differently. In fact, Shopify actually encourages candidates to apply if they don’t meet all the traditional requirements listed on a position.
“We don’t want to exclude people who can be incredible in a role because they don’t think they’re qualified,” Anna says. Shopify’s website goes further, saying, “Experience comes in many forms, many skills are transferable and passion goes a long way.” Don’t you wish more companies thought like that?
In episode 29 of I Want Her Job: The Podcast, Editor and Host Polina Selyutin speaks with Anna about how Shopify actively seeks to understand a job candidate historically and how the company factors in passion projects and career goals. If you’ve ever been discouraged by the traditional job application process, you won’t want to miss today’s show.
Martha Ruiz, a tax partner for PwC, specializes in helping clients in the entertainment industry with their tax and strategic planning. In addition, she also has a jaw-dropping role as the Oscars Balloting Co-leader. This means Martha is one of only two individuals in the world (along with balloting co-leader Brian Cullinan) who knows the Oscar winners a week before the event. And yes, she can be found during the ceremony hand delivering the envelopes with a winner's name! PwC, which has had a relationship with the Academy for 88 years, announced Martha’s position just last year. She’s the second woman and first Latina woman to have this role.
In episode 28 of I Want Her Job: The Podcast, Editor and Host Polina Selyutin speaks with Martha about the importance of education, work ethic and its influence on one's career path, her work as the balloting co-leader for the Oscars for an upcoming third year in a row and that tricky topic of work/life balance.
How does one make the transition from being interested in a job at a tech startup to becoming a sought-after technology investor, advisor and founder?
Sarah Kunst is the founder of Proday, a subscription-based workout app that allows you to: “Train alongside world-class athletes. Anytime. Anywhere.” In today’s show, this startup founder and former venture capitalist walks us through the steps she took on her path to attract some incredible opportunities. (Like backing from the Los Angeles Dodger’s accelerator program and funding from angel investors Arielle Zuckerberg and Sara Haider.) And she didn’t let statements like, “We really like you, but you don’t have the experience” get in her way. Not one little bit. In fact, Sarah became a female VC before she even turned 30, which is no easy feat.
Through hard work and a relentless drive to help startups, this 2015 Forbes 30 Under 30 list-maker and contributing editor to Marie Claire, understands what it takes to carve out a career path and bring others up with you. In episode 27 of I Want Her Job: The Podcast, Sarah walks Editor and Host Polina Selyutin through the road she traveled and the decisions she made that led her to become a highly respected investor and advisor.
Imagine you are two months pregnant and you are let go from your job. You begin to search for jobs with decent maternity leave policies, but you notice companies are not clear on this information.
What would you do knowing you have a baby on the way? Little did Georgene Huang know that this life-changing moment would allow her the opportunity to help make the workplace better for women. Partnering with Romy Newman, the two would soon found Fairygodboss, a community that provides women information about the ‘hard-to-ask’ questions when interviewing with a potential company. In episode 26 of I Want Her Job: The Podcast, Editor and Host Polina Selyutin speaks with Romy Newman about how they started Fairygodboss, their business model, insights from the reviews they are receiving and key career advice.
If you had been told which majors were fast-tracks to careers in the fastest-growing job markets, would you have approached your college education a little differently? Don’t worry, we’re right there with you.
The fact is, the job market is evolving quickly and even the most educated among us can find it hard to keep ahead of the what’s-hot-now curve. What are the best majors? What does it mean to be qualified? How can I find a job with a salary to afford me a solid 401k?
That’s where Tara Sinclair comes in. As a senior fellow economist at Indeed and an associate professor at George Washington University, Tara has the inside information on the industries that are growing and what it takes to be a part of them. In episode 25 of I Want Her Job: The Podcast, be prepared for more than a few surprises in terms of markets you might want to explore.
Tara takes Editor Polina Selyutin behind the velvet rope of the job-hunting process to give you the keys to not only land a job, but also find a career with continual forward momentum from entry level to upper management. Additionally, they discuss some of the hottest markets, the gig economy and why labor literacy is so important.
Imagine wearing a beautiful gold choker with black onyx cabochons on the end. It’s on-trend, stunning … but wait, it’s only $200? And it’s real gold?
Yes. Thanks to a dream of two best friends – Bouchra Ezzahraoui and Sophie Kahn – over a Sunday brunch, exquisite gold jewelry brand AUrate came to life. AUrate, which is “AU” for gold (thanks, chemistry class!) and is pronounced “OR-ate” (because, like an “orator” the brand tells a story), was launched in December 2014. Inspired by Warby Parker, what sets the brand apart is its ability to offer high-quality gold jewelry direct-to-consumer. By cutting out the middleman, the brand can offer customers stunning jewelry at up to 50-to-75% off typical industry prices. As Morocco-raised Bouchra says, “Gold is extremely expensive in the United States.”
The duo, who met while attending graduate school at Princeton in 2009, built AUrate while holding full-time jobs, taking classes in design and hosting pop-up shops on the side. Beyond the hustle, what’s so impressive about Bouchra and Sophie is their deep passion for educating consumers about the differences in gold and other jewelry, saying stores carry, “Fine jewelry or fashion pieces you’d pay a lot for, but are not really made out of fine materials.” One example of that? Fashion jewelry that turns one’s fingers green! Facing this problem themselves, after some digging, research confirmed what they had already known: In retail there was either affordable fashion jewelry or expensive fine jewelry. There was nothing in the middle, and a gap needed to be filled.
Others caught on and quickly agreed. Once the demand took off, the two decided to dive into the company full-throttle. While Sophie focuses on the fashion and design side of the business, Bouchra is drawn to the business side. In episode 24 of I Want Her Job: The Podcast, Editor and Host Polina Selyutin speaks with Bouchra and Sophie about the strategies they used that resulted in 400% annual growth, advice to other entrepreneurs, and combining their individual background in math and finance with design, art and social purpose. Go to www.iwantherjob.com for more show notes and links to topics discussed in the show.
Maghan McDowell grew up in the South and found herself moving multiple times – to three different states and even the Czech Republic. It created a sense of independence, and ultimately, inspired this Women’s Wear Daily tech reporter’s personal style.
“The impact of how you look – and your style – really does effect the way you’re perceived and the way you’re treated in the world,” she says. “Anthropologically it’s interesting to see … And I really think that informed my respect and style for clothes. It’s not just something frivolous.”
At WWD, a.k.a. the “Fashion Bible” and go-to resource for fashion’s insiders, Maghan works as the trade publication’s first San Francisco-based reporter focusing exclusively on the intersection of technology and fashion. She covers the business of the fashion industry and the topics important to those working in it.
In episode 23 of I Want Her Job: The Podcast, Editor and Host Polina Selyutin speaks with Maghan about balancing speed versus accuracy in reporting, juggling up to 14 stories a week, future trends in fashion and technology, and so much more.
Winnie Sun is a different kind of financial adviser. While many of her industry colleagues would strive for the same goals she does in providing the best, most high-quality customer service, not as many would take that goal to the level of launching an in-house multimedia company designed to provide financial advice. But, Winnie did just that.
As the managing director and founding partner of Irvine, Calif.-based financial consulting firm Sun Group Wealth Partners, Winnie not only serves her corporate and individual clients, but she also serves as a thought leader in the financial realm. Through the firm’s multimedia company, Winnie works with her team to record daily video segments for YouTube that helps those of us a little less financially savvy to navigate the world of investing and our personal finances. This on-demand content (that also includes a podcast, heavy social media presence and increased emphasis on mobile-first) was created after many long discussions where the firm realized that the industry wasn’t adapting as fast as a customer’s needs. “We had a vision in mind to create a relevant, attractive and top-of-mind firm for the next generation,” Winnie says.
In addition to changing her firm’s approach, Winnie also pens financial advice for Forbes and Nerd Wallet (among many, many others) and appears frequently on CNBC and CBS, in addition to a handful of other top networks. Prior to Sun Group Wealth Partners, Winnie held positions at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, and before that she had a less traditional financial services career path, working as an entrepreneur as founder of CH Entertainment. The Los Angeles-based television audience production company had clients ranging from America’s Funniest Home Videos to Jeopardy and Wheel of Fortune.
In episode 21, meet Therese Huston, author of “How Women Decide: What’s True, What’s Not, and What Strategies Spark the Best Choices.” In her book, Therese shares research that shows women and men are, however, actually equally skilled when it comes to decision making. And, as an expert on the topic of changing the conversation surrounding female decision-makers,
In this episode, Podcast Editor Polina Selyutin and Therese discuss high-pressure decision making, the gender myth and also some tactical advice that may help you when you’re stuck trying to make your own decisions. And for further reading on the topic, we highly recommend Therese’s Harvard Business Review article that illustrates women don’t always get the fair shake they deserve when it comes to how their decisions are perceived.
In previous episodes of I Want Her Job: The Podcast, we’ve explored the world of impact investing, a field that combines financial returns with social impact. As conscious women, we’re excited by this industry that places emphasis on initiatives deeply valued and dear to our hearts, like the environment and health care. In 2016, impact investing was a $60 billion marketplace, and it’s only continuing to grow.
In episode 20, Podcast Editor Polina Selyutin speaks with Victoria Fram, managing director of impact investing firm Village Capital. The organization believes in creating opportunities at a local level for entrepreneurs in underserved markets. Their focus is twofold, with emphasis on economic inequality for startups – increasing access to affordable healthcare, education and financial services – as well as on sustainable agriculture and energy.
It’s Victoria’s job to work with investors who wish to align their investments along with their values. A particular emphasis is placed on early-stage companies. What sets Village Capital apart is their approach. Entrepreneurs in their portfolio constantly evaluate one another, giving each the opportunity to, “Hear candid viewpoints from [their] peers,” Victoria says.
Over the last 6 years, Village Capital has overseen more than 40 programs, investing in 70 companies with over 500 entrepreneurs, ranging in investments from $70,000 to $500,000. Investments in these programs totaling $3 million has resulted in a 15 to 1 return for investors. And while many investment firms chase the same markets, Village Capital is seeing great success in other areas, including ed tech startups in New Orleans and agriculture in Kentucky.
“The best entrepreneurs are not the ones in Silicon Valley who are creating an app that will make life a little easier – or fleetingly more fun … The best entrepreneurs are out there in cities and towns across the country, disrupting the world’s toughest problems, creating good paying jobs and strengthening their communities,” Victoria says. Read more at www.iwantherjob.com
As the passionate founder of Motivate Design – a user experience research, design and staffing firm – Mona works with large organizations to help them understand how users are using their brand, product or service. Overall, Mona and her team tackle a big question: How do you understand how people work and think, and then how does that apply to the design of products? Her team will heavily research, work intentionally across industries, apply different perspectives, and even shadow actual users, to find insights that can then help improve the experience a customer has with certain service or product.
When she’s not leading her team of 25 at Motivate Design, which also happens to be an Inc. 5000 company, Mona is an instructor at Parsons The New School for Design. Her passion for encouraging others to think about design problems creatively has expanded to writing a book, Reframe: Shift The Way You Work, Innovate and Think; hosting workshops, launching design camps for kids and even a children’s design book. Mona also is a though leader on user-centered design and innovation, experience strategies, usability, lean startups and business management who writes for Fast Company and TIME Business.
In episode 19 of I Want Her Job: The Podcast, Mona shares her technique for triggering design ideas, advice for those considering a startup life and her favorite resources for reading up and getting ahead. For detailed show notes and a detailed list of Mona's resources for learning about UX design go to www.iwantherjob.com
Jessica Jackson Sloan is the youngest-ever elected official in the charming city of Mill Valley, California, located just 14 miles north of San Francisco. In her role as vice mayor of the city where she grew up, Jessica works on local politics. That would be enough of an accomplishment for many to be satisfied, but not Jessica, who has deep life experiences that motivated her to spend her time helping those less fortunate.
As national director of #cut50, a truly bipartisan initiative to end mass incarceration, Jessica works with her colleagues and a team of notable influencers (like Alicia Keys and Richard Branson) to cut the prison population in the United States by half within the next 10 years. The organization works to raise the issue in media and inform others that the issue has become massive – and not only is a huge resource suck in our society, but also one that has the potential for alternative options that would keep our communities safer.
Prior to her dual jobs, Jessica worked on death penalty cases, saying that when serving those on death row, “You see the worst of the worst of the system … Unfortunately the client pays the ultimate price … their life.” It was this background that prompted Jessica to join politics in the first place, as she had a desire to move into policy work to broaden her impact.
In episode 18 of I Want Her Job: The Podcast, we hear about how Jessica’s very personal story led her to law school and then her work on death penalty cases and eventually, at #cut50 and for the city of Mill Valley. Her story is one you’ll want to hear.
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Couture paper design artist Tanja Maduzia is a modern-day crafts(wo)man. As the owner of byTanja, a couture paper design studio based in Los Angeles, Tanja specializes in event invitations for special occasions from parties, to weddings and showers. Well known in Hollywood circles, Tanja has worked with big-name clients including Steven Spielberg, Bradley Cooper, Christina Aguilera, Jake Gyllenhaal and Jonah Hill. She’s also a frequent featured DIY-er on ABC’s The List.
When it comes to the creative process, Tanja believes we should all step away from the computer. “Part of my creativity is that I’m always moving around and physically making things,” she says. “I purposely am a bit disconnected.”
In episode 17 of I Want Her Job: The Podcast, Editor Polina Selyutin and Tanja discuss nurturing creativity, building a business from scratch and sources of inspiration. You might even be surprised, like we were, to learn that Tanja bucks the status quo when it comes to inspiration boards. Listen on to find out why, and hear Tanja’s thoughts on the importance of work ethic.
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Many of us feel like we hit the lottery when we land our dream job. But today’s podcast guest has held a handful of dream jobs for some majorly crush-worthy companies.
The last time we featured Rachel Hofstetter on I Want Her Job, her book about foodie entrepreneurs, Cooking Up A Business, was fresh off the press and stirring up quite the media buzz. She also had just launched guesterly, a memorable approach to introducing all of the special people at your special events – from weddings to bar mitzvahs – with her husband Lorne. Then last fall, guesterly was acquired by Chatbooks, makers of “super easy $8 photo books” and Rachel became vice president of marketing for the brand.
This veteran food editor of O, The Oprah Magazine also found the time to share what she learned about crafting that perfect pitch while working at the publication and launched PR School, an online course, with former Leading Lady Angela Jia Kim.
In episode 16 of I Want Her Job: The Podcast, Editor Polina Selyutin speaks with Rachel about pitching a business idea, managing a startup and her work/life balance philosophy.
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What if you could find an employer that not only allowed – but embraced – flexible work options? Enter The Second Shift, a business launched in 2014 to serve as a digital matchmaker for businesses seeking on-demand talent with professional women looking for flexible employment opportunities, including consulting and freelancing, in the fields of marketing and finance. Founded by Jenny Galluzzo and Gina Hadley, The Second Shift has caught the attention of female creatives and the media alike. (Editor’s Note: “Helping Moms Lean In, But Not Too Far” on the duo in The New York Times is a must-read.) Membership for the service is free, with The Second Shift taking a small percentage from both employer and employee once an individual is contracted.
Even prior to founding The Second Shift, Jenny and Gina had vibrant careers. Jenny worked as a television producer, booker and on-air reporter for Good Morning America, News 12 The Bronx and Plum TV. She even started her own vintage caftan clothing line, Mayer Studio. Gina hailed from the world of advertising, and before having children worked as a creative coordinator at Ogilvy & Mather on the IBM account. After becoming a mom, however, Gina embraced the life of an entrepreneur – working at Ads.com, launching and selling Urban Monkeys and launching another company, Gina Hadley Consulting.
In episode 15 of I Want Her Job: The Podcast, Editor Polina Selyutin speaks with Jenny and Gina about testing a concept prior to launch, bucking the 9-to-5 status quo, secrets to startup success and more.
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Caroline took a leap from a career in investment banking to one launching a high-end luxury retail line that sold in more than 400 stores worldwide from Neiman Marcus to Bloomingdales. But that was only the first chapter in this now-established entrepreneur’s startup career.
When this first company failed two years later, Carolyn wasn’t deterred. Instead, she launched a multi-million dollar interactive marketing agency, Cake Communications. And, she also used the failure as an opportunity to give a very real and very vulnerable TEDx talk.
Today Carolyn is running global women’s collaborative accelerator, Circular Board, a virtual, 12-week program. “[As] an entrepreneur myself, I’ve helped raise billions of dollars in capital through my work as an investment banker for JPMorgan and as founder of Cake Communications,” she says. In her role, Carolyn teaches others how to do the same, and she serves as an advocate for women in business, connecting female entrepreneurs to the capital, resources, mentors and partners to fuel their growth.
Additionally, Carolyn serves on the board of the Texas A&M Mays College of Business, as a member of the Dell Women’s Entrepreneur Network and as a United Nations Global Accelerator delegate. She is the recipient of the American Express Micro to Millions Award, a Sam Walton Emerging Entrepreneur and an Entrepreneur magazine 2016 “Woman to Watch.” She’s also been featured in The Huffington Post, Fortune, Time and on MSNBC, among others.
In episode 14 of I Want Her Job: The Podcast, Editor Polina Selyutin speaks with Carolyn about the lessons learned from launching two businesses; her goals for growing Circular Board; and the vital importance of connection, collaboration and curiosity.
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Bea Arthur knows a thing or two about making a pivot.
And no, just to be clear we’re not talking about the same Bea Arthur who starred among the OG Girl Squad – the Golden Girls. This Bea Arthur, like the other, was a bad ass. But, unlike the Bea of nostalgia’s past, this Bea Arthur has an entrepreneurial bug that bit her hard and never left – seeing her through two startups since graduating college in 2008.
Now, as for that pivoting, as a licensed therapist and startup founder, Bea has learned the importance of making nimble, not-so-easy decisions and has mastered the art of picking herself back up again. Her company, In Your Corner (formerly Pretty Padded Room), is a leader in using telemedicine to offer counseling and coaching services online through video and text. Her idea was so standout that it landed her an appearance on ABC’s Shark Tank. Even without getting an investment from the sharks, Bea used their feedback to tweak her idea, and as Fast Company put it, she “turned her mistakes into assets.”
Now, Bea is about to make a pivot again, and has decided to close the virtual doors of In Your Corner to make room for her next business venture in the online therapy space. But this time she’s turning her attention to America’s warriors – service men and women – and is launching an online resource for them later this year called Inside the Wire.
“[When you’re in the military] you can’t stop to think about your circumstances,” Bea says. “You can’t wallow and eat a burrito and watch Netflix. You have to keep your mind sharp. I got really into the idea of emotional endurance.”
In addition to being a serial entrepreneur, Bea is a TEDx speaker who shared her ideas on the “Culture of Comparison” (which, we highly recommend you YouTube.) She also was the first African-American woman to be accepted into the prestigious Y Combinator accelerator program in Mountain View, Calif. She’s also the co-host and co-producer of You’re Not Crazy, a comedic show about mental health on YouTube. She is a first-generation American who was born and raised in Houston, Texas, by her parents who immigrated from Ghana in West Africa.
In episode 13 of I Want Her Job: The Podcast, Podcast Editor Polina Selyutin speaks with Bea about her college education at Columbia in New York City, her first startup fizzling out, her work helping domestic violence survivors and how the three have swirled together to give Bea business ideas that are helping to solve problems and assist others.
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It’s 7:30 a.m., and your four-year-old waddles up to you in his pj’s, as you’re frantically trying to finish your at-home blowout. You need to get out of the house. You’re already late for your job, only he’s sick and wants you to stay home. So, his wee hands reach out and he asks you for a hug, and that’s it. You don’t want to leave. Moreover, you don’t want to go through this part of your morning routine ever again.
And Inkwell’s Manon DeFelice would be right there with you. “It’s fine if you want to lean in to your career,” she says, “But what if you also want to lean in to being a mom?”
Frustrated with a lack of flexibility in traditional corporate jobs, Manon founded Inkwell as a recruiting service to help match capable professionals with startups and forward-thinking companies in need of top-tier talent on a flexible basis. It’s a win-win. The women recruited by Inkwell find flexible jobs that grow their resumes, and the startups that hire them get exceptional seasoned talent.
Prior to starting Inkwell, Manon led nonprofit AHA Foundation and served as its general counsel. At AHA Foundation, the first organization focused on ending honor violence, forced marriage, child marriage and female genital mutilation in the United States, she helped spearhead federal and state legislation. Previous to that role she served as assistant counsel in New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s Office of Criminal Justice.
In episode 12 of I Want Her Job: The Podcast, Podcast Editor Polina Selyutin speaks with Manon about starting a company, how to get more women in the boardroom, and the importance of being an advocate for yourself and other women.
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If you love museums and art, chances are Maria Yoon has your dream job.
As a performance artist, filmmaker, senior museum educator and founder of the recently-launched Private Museum Tours. Maria is a multi-hyphenate trailblazing her own path. With more than 20 years of museum education on her resume, including 17 at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, in her new business Maria guides individuals, VIP’s and groups through various museums and galleries in the greater New York City area.
“The best part [of my job] is to be surrounded by beautiful things. It never gets old,” Maria says. “Why? Exhibitions change every three months. At a large museum like the Met, they have such a large scale of collections that every day I find something new, and I find beauty in that.”
The last time we interviewed Maria Yoon on I Want Her Job, she had just said her final “I do” as part of her documentary, Maria the Korean Bride, in which Maria had 50 different marriages to 50 different “spouses” (including men, women – and even the Liberty Bell!) in 50 states, to bring greater attention to the cultural pressures and ostracism individuals feel when pressured to tie the knot.
“When I was 30 years old, my dad, I think he panicked … He felt that he didn’t live up to his standard as a father because I was still single. I was alone in his eyes, me – living the life I do as an artist and museum educator was not good enough … ” Maria says. “We began to argue a lot … and then I said, ‘Let me see what I can do to meet you halfway.’ That conversation became a giant documentary film.”
The film received attention from various film festivals, PBS, NBC News, Yahoo!, The Huffington Post, Timemagazine and even led to an appearance on TLC’s Cake Boss. But, after such acclaim, what comes next?
In episode 11 of I Want Her Job: The Podcast, Podcast Editor Polina Selyutin speaks with Maria about the deep and unexpected impact her film had on her own life, insight into how the film was made, as well as Maria’s future plans for a documentary about ghosting.
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Kerrin Mitchell is a woman who aligns herself with managers who are mavericks. And, we feel it takes one to know one. As the co-founder of Fluxx, a company by philanthropists for philanthropists, that makes software to manage the grants process for foundations, nonprofits and government agencies, Kerrin is a woman truly making a difference.
Fluxx strives to elevate grantmakers, empower grantseekers and help change the world one grant at a time. The company, which has experienced triple-digit annual growth for the past four years – has a client list that includes Citibank’s Citi Foundation, charity: water, the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, and even the government of New Zealand, which manages all of its grants through the company’s software. In fact, 7 of the 11 largest foundations globally use Fluxx for their grants process.
“I feel lucky. I think oftentimes the industries people get into don’t have that sense of community that my industry has innately … [we’re] people and service-oriented individuals,” Kerrin says. “I always liked the idea of social enterprise. Then we started getting into it and I realized, ‘Wow, this is a pretty unique and special environment.’ People are really trying to help each other and build something big.”
And Kerrin, who’s been named one of the top 13 female founders by Forbes on its America’s Most Promising Companies list, is one of those women who likes to go big or go home. In episode 10 of I Want Her Job: The Podcast, we speak with Kerrin about co-founding Fluxx in 2010, her formula for building a successful career and the importance of being deliberate with time.
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The news cycle reminds us that the world has some serious figuring out to do when it comes to refugees – those individuals who have left their home country due to war, conflict or persecution. Thankfully, there are advocates out there working relentlessly to find solutions. One of these people is Jessica Therkelsen, global policy director for Asylum Access, a nonprofit devoted to refugee rights.
And, while we know there’s a problem and that refugees are homeless while building a new life, what many of us may not realize is the scale of this crisis. There are more than 20 million refugees today, and a refugee (including children) stay in a refugee camp in exile for an average of 20 years.
This isn’t okay with Asylum Access. The nonprofit believes refugees have a right to a fair chance at a new life – wherever they might be – and the group works tirelessly to help refugees in their new country obtain basic rights to live and work. Last year Asylum Access helped more than 20,000 refugees gain these basic rights through individualized legal services. And it doesn’t stop there. The nonprofit also advocates with the United Nations and government entities around the world to ensure the systems that help refugees obtain these basic human rights remain intact.
“There is a growing recognition in the international community that the status quo of how we deliver aid is not meeting long-term needs,” Jessica says, “… What somebody experiences to become a refugee is something you never ever want your family or friends to experience.” Listen to episode 9 of I Want Her Job: The Podcast to hear her advice on how you can get involved and make an impact.
TOPICS DISCUSSED IN TODAY'S SHOW: