January 24, 2013

You Are the Reason for My Success

This week, I learned that one of the reasons I am successful is that I have been lucky enough to have good friends. Specifically, good women friends.

This past Monday I attended TEDx Columbia SC, an independent local TED event. One of the speakers was Dr. Linda Salane, director of the Leadership Institute at Columbia College. She talked about what's keeping women from being successful in business.

One of the problems she addressed was "what women believe about women." In surveys, women say they'd prefer to work with men instead of other women. We apparently think other women are "over-dramatic back-stabbers."

Sitting in the audience and listening to Dr. Salane, I felt both disturbed and surprised. Sure, I knew there were some awful women out there. Heck, there are awful men, too. But there are plenty of women who are good people, people with whom I'd love to work.

Last day of school, 8th grade
It struck me that maybe I've just been fortunate in my friends. From nursery school through elementary school, high school through college, young adulthood on into motherhood, I have been privileged to call some truly wonderful women my friends. They kept my secrets, shared jokes and smiles and memories. They told me when I was being stupid, but stayed friends with me anyway.

So, to all my friends, thank you. Because you taught me that I can trust other women, and work with other women, I've been successful in my career.

To moms of girls, teach them to be good friends and help them find good friends. You'll be setting them on the path to success.

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