listen to people that influence you.
It’s really important that we influence other women, so
tell them that they’re doing a great job and why. And what
you see them doing. ‘I envision that you could run this com-
pany.’‘I envision that you could be our next CFO.’‘I envision
that you could lead a big group.’
I think that’s one: us encouraging each other. The other
thing is, the men that we work around with, I think we
need to say to them, ‘You’ve got to look to the women in
the company.’ So, if there’s a search for a position, be the
first to say to that man or within that group, ‘Let’s really
look to the women in the company and for an executive
woman to lead.’ So, it’s really upon us to drive that.
MWM: Being intentional about it is definitely a big fac-
tor. And it also really goes back to what you said ear-
lier about really caring about other people’s success.
CM: Yes, very important.
MWM: So, what piece of advice made the biggest dif-
ference in your career?
CM: I was given the advice once, and I would give it to
everyone again: Take a risk. You’ll think, ‘Oh, I can’t make
that move,’‘It’s too much,’‘Will I hurt my family,’ and you go
through all these things. You don’t want to be selfish, but if
you have a little voice in yourself that says you want to do
something, find a way to take that risk and do it. It really
does pan out and it’s very rewarding to look back and say,
‘Boy that…’ And if it doesn’t work, it doesn’t work, and it
doesn’t have to be the end of the world, but taking a risk
can really make a difference.
MWM: I heard that a lot of people, including yourself I think at one point, explain that a lot of women
don’t want to take that next step because it feels
like we won’t be able to take a breath because we’re
trying to balance a lot of different things in our lives.
Can you describe what your process is in kind of letting go?
CM: I was really bad at letting go. I think women have an
insatiable desire to be perfect at everything. We just do,
it’s just in our DNA. Whether it’s our home life, whether
you’re decorating a room, or whether you’re at work,
it’s really hard to let things go. What I’ve done are simple
things. You know, the piles are stacking and there’s a pile
at home that’s the bill pile and hopefully it’s getting paid.
So, sometimes you just have to organize the pile and put
it over in the corner and put in the calendar when you’re
going to do it. I find that if I calendar something out and say,
‘Monday night I’m going to do my bills after I work out,’ or
‘Tuesday is my me-day’—whatever it is—sometimes that
helps you plan your week, and then it doesn’t seem so
overwhelming. You’re not letting it go, you’re just compartmentalizing it. And that I think is really helpful.
MWM: In closing, is there anything else you would
want to tell female professionals that aspire to lead-
ership or growth opportunities in the future?
CM: I would say that all women are true leaders at heart,
mothers and professionals alike. Use your voice, speak up,
do what you need to do in order to get to that next step
or be really, really great at what you’re doing today. I think
women in a company and in the family are always the ones
that everyone gravitates to, and that’s tough, but it’s kind of
what we were built for. And keep up the great work.
Interview performed by Kristin Messerli, Managing Editor.
Do you know an amazing woman?
Want to share her story?
If you have a
story you want
to tell, please