Los Angeles, CA – On November 27th, 2017, CAUSE hosted the Women in Power “Leading Through Workplace Patriarchy” Networking Reception at the Omni Los Angeles Hotel.
Lindsey Horowitz, Programs Director of CAUSE, opened the program by sharing how the Women in Power program strives to empower emerging women leaders by creating opportunities for candid discussion regarding the issues they face. She introduced the evening’s panelists, Tracy Lawrence and Suzy Ryoo, along with the moderator, Kim Yamasaki.
As the moderator, Kim Yamasaki, Executive Director of CAUSE invited the panelists to speak on the challenges in working with the men in their industries.
Tracy Lawrence, co-founder and CEO of Chewse, and recently named one of Forbes’ 30 Under 30, shared a personal story of what it was like for her to come to terms with herself as a woman CEO. After being told by potential investors that she and her team were not “out for blood”, she admitted, “I don’t have the confidence of a man. I don’t have masculine traits.”
Instead, she decided to embrace her more feminine leadership style, saying, “I want to build a different kind of business…a ‘love’-company.” She explained that her “love-company” is a work environment where “you give your people and everyone you work with your respect,” regardless of their ethnicity, gender, or sexual orientation.
Suzy Ryoo, Venture Partner at Atom Factory and Cross Culture Ventures, continued the discussion by sharing her perspective as an investor. She conveyed how her experience in working with two men of color gave her the support to invest in more diverse ventures, dozens of which are led by women. As she reflected on her past experiences, she stated, “We are far too familiar with…being the only woman in the room, the only person of color.”
When they were asked to share their most valuable leadership tips, Suzy responded by telling the audience: “Take your holidays to examine your network, see who you spend time with and where you have gaps.”
Suzy stressed that by being proactive in building relationships with people who have vastly different experiences, we can increase the diversity in our thinking and become leaders who consider a larger multitude of perspectives.
Tracy followed by encouraging current leaders to foster greater emotional intelligence by creating spaces where people, especially women, can be vulnerable. She explained: “Emotional intelligence can not only be a pathway to building business, but also a pathway to build a better business.”
As the program came to an end, guests were encouraged to share their questions with the panelists and to connect with each other.