MADE Maven October Issue MADE Magazine - Page 58

MADEUS to be successful. I’ve also learned that in running a start-up, my job function changes every year as we grow our team, improve our product and expand our reach. WHAT ARE YOUR GOALS FOR THE FGB COMMUNITY? At its core, our mission is to improve the workplace for women through transparency, and we aim to be the go-to source for women throughout their career. WHO INSPIRED YOU TO SPEAK UP? HAVE YOU ALWAYS BEEN COMFORTABLE SPEAKING UP IN THE WORKPLACE? I’m a big believer in practice making perfect. I’m also a lawyer by training so I have been to some extent professionally groomed to make logical arguments and speak up when I saw that something didn’t make sense or wasn’t right. WHAT ARE SOME QUESTIONS WOMEN SHOULD ASK TO DETERMINE THE CULTURE OF THEIR COMPANY? You can and should certainly ask about a company’s cultures and values. However, not everything is comfortable to ask directly, or you may worry about getting insincere answers. Therefore, there are important clues you should look for to determine what a workplace culture is like. When considering a company, it’s important to look at who’s in senior management. Leadership (and pushing for gender equality) starts at the top, so by seeing who is leading a company and familiarizing yourself with their bios and accomplishments, you can gain valuable information on what the company might be like. Additionally, when interviewing, I recommend scheduling an interview first thing in the morning and/or toward the end of the day. That way you can see when and how many people are in the office to get a sense of working hours and flexibility. In terms of questions, you can also ask “Why do you like working here?,” and “What are the challenges of working here?” to gain some insight. Additionally, I would recommend doing an informational interview if you have any contacts who work at the company to get a different perspective. HAVE YOU SEEN A SIGNIFICANT AMOUNT OF PROGRESS SINCE STARTING? I have. I believe many companies are trying to do the right thing when it comes to creating fair, equitable corporate cultures that support employees across the board. I also think the #MeToo movement has helped speed the case along for gender equality, diversity, and the need for more women in leadership. We’re making progress, but it’s still too slow going. WHAT DO YOU THINK IS THE MOST SIGNIFICANT BARRIER TO WOMEN LEADERSHIP? I believe the biggest barrier is overcoming unconscious bias, which take a significant cultural and institutional shift. IN YOUR OPINION WHAT WILL BE THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE FOR THE GENERATION OF WOMEN BEHIND YOU? In a perfect world, their career journeys would be challenge free! But in reality, I believe we have a long way to go in achieving equal pay and universal paid family leave. Unfortunately, I think some of the challenges we’re facing now will still continue to be relevant in the coming years, but hopefully Fairygodboss will make it easier for the next generation of women to navigate these issues and advocate for change. WHAT ADVICE/ENCOURAGING WORD WOULD YOU GIVE TO WOMEN WHO FIND IT DIFFICULT TO SPEAK UP FOR THEMSELVES? Surround yourself with supportive mentors and sponsors at your company who can help guide your career and be an advocate for you. I think you’ll find that their support will give you the confidence to speak up more and more throughout your career. | 58