Finishing up a great read, The Mature Mind, The Positive Power of the Aging Brain by Gene D Cohen. Cohen expanded on Erikson’s Psychosocial Stages that looked at human development up to around age 40. Cohen’s work looks at Midlife Re-evaluation => Liberation => Summing Up => Encore stages from 40 beyond. Integrating this type of thought and understanding of this kind of brain power and creative thinking shows the importance of leaders and team members in this age group. We cannot afford to lose their insight, wisdom and perspective when trying to innovate. I will no longer associate the senior moment with things forgotten. Let us look to them as moments of wisdom derived from experience and perspective.
Congratulations Liz Benham on a successful first BPW International President’s Seminar. I went to learn and share and my expectations were exceeded. From presentations, best practice discussions, and region reports to connecting, sharing and laughing, it was well worth the journey to New York.
I was too wrapped up in listening to Dr. Antoinette Rüegg’s presentation on Emotional Intelligence to catch it on film. I will do my best to follow her sage words “not by teaching but by changing self” in order to create change. Lead by example and hope that we can encourage others to reverse the pattern of “women do not invest in women.”
Jean Murray’s presentation on Good Governance was quite poignant as we begin the early stages of BPW Malmö. I look forward to passing this wisdom on to my board and the members who will eventually take our place. These things are critical foundations that will help us build and grow as a sustainable organisation well into the future.
Understanding the significance of the relationship we at BPW have with international organisations, particularly the United Nations and the Commission on the Status of Women, was significant. Having a voice is empowering, using it is powerful. Thank you Freda Miriklis for providing further clarity.
Gabriella Canonica provided great information on the plans for membership and retention. We will do our best to bring in the quality membership in Öresund that inspires active participation. I agree we must engage our members to feel the desire to share at least 1+1. (Sorry I missed photo opp, I was busy listening again.)
The Young BPW Chair, Nadia Munawar, presented some current projects and goals for YBPW. The AEISEC project for cross-cultural training opportunities in Pakistan looked particularly promising. I am sure we will see great things happen during her term.
Thank you all for your wisdom and your passion. You continue to inspire me.
Empowering women in leadership is the first step to empowering the next generation. To pave the path for others we must provide good role models, respect and teach respect one another, be open to learning from and teaching others, and rising to the occasion when we are given the opportunity to lead. As multifaceted individuals, we are in a constant mode of transition from one aspect of our lives to others. Our priorities require adjusting, sometimes more drastically than others, and sometimes only momentarily.
As leaders, as women, as human beings rather than doings, empowering each other through mutual compassion and respect is critical for the long haul. Simply said, it is lonely at the top. It is important to remember that our leaders are as human and multifaceted as the rest of us. Their passions may lie in supporting their followers, but they cannot do that effectively without support maintaining the others facets of their lives.
After much listening, asking and thought, we are making some major changes to how we grow 2BalanceU. The networks need support to grow and share their work. Many of them are doing wonderful research that should be shared and learned from. Much of it overlaps with other networks efforts and could be used in a more comprehensive work. Work on empowering young women to fuel their ambition, women on boards, supporting women entrepreneurs, mentoring, the list goes on. But each of these are clearly universal themes in women’s networks around the world.
We have listened and are soon launching our global community calendar to share events. We are creating a comprehensive directory of women’s networks and organizations. We are turning off the questions and answers until user numbers make this effective. Our Groups are still available for more specific inquiry and response. We are returning to our focus of the resources that are available. Networks, Events and Resources are online, global, regional and local.
This change in format feels right, and effective for supporting the women that are the leaders of today and tomorrow. I hope that those who have enjoyed the questions will not be too disappointed at their temporary disappearance. But I believe they will be happy with the end result.
Building 2BalanceU and working with women sharing wisdom is empowering in itself. I constantly receive validation for the need for a tool that encourages women to share wisdom. As I meet with representatives from international agencies and global networks, we shared our thoughts about the similarities rather than the differences in women and what they need to succeed and be happy. They express their thanks for a tool to connect women in the field and partners of men in the field to other women in their communities. By supporting women in leadership roles we can empower them to be change agents. By removing the distractions of our differences and focusing on what we have to learn from each other we can all accomplish great things. We are both bearers of great wisdom and receivers of it. It doesn’t have to be lonely at the top. We all can achieve more and rise to the occasion when we feel more balanced.