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Lessons Learned From Ursula Burns and Ann Mulcahy

courage power speak up Feb 10, 2021

Lessons Learned From Ursula Burns and Ann Mulcahy

Something extraordinary happened at Xerox between 2001 and 2009, prior to the only woman to woman CEO changing of the guard in a large Fortune 500 company. For almost a decade, Ann Mulcahy was a fierce ally and supporter of Ursula Burns, so there would be a smooth transition when Ursula became CEO in 2009. In Mulcahy’s HBR article How I Did It: Xerox’s Former CEO on Why Succession Shouldn’t Be a Horse Race, she was not threatened by the brilliant, outspoken, and power of Burns. Mulcahy recognized Burn’s strengths, challenged her to improve her weaknesses and championed her for almost a decade until Burns eventually replaced her as CEO. 

What can we learn from these two compassionate and powerful women, and how can we use this wisdom to empower more female leaders, emerging leaders and male allies, especially those who sit on the margins?

Quite a lot, but here are two important things to ponder and hopefully...

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Take the New Mindset Mastery Assessment

Take the New Mindset Mastery Assessment

If you’re feeling a little (or a lot:) overwhelmed or out of control, I hear you! You are most definitely not alone. That gets compounded when we are absorbing and managing how other family members and team members are doing. 

In my household, I have one son who is in Nevada with his girlfriend and her family (I’m in California), and my younger son is on the tennis team and a senior at UC Berkeley. The tennis season was cancelled, all of his friends went home and there will be no formal graduation ceremony (except at home!). My daughter (age 20), is supposed to be in Honolulu right now with her best friend for Spring Break. As you can imagine, she’s not too thrilled to be at home with me! Despite it all, everyone seems to be taking everything in stride (most of the time:). 

Let’s take a moment for YOU and check in to see how you’re doing!

How you feel and how you are managing your thoughts and...

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Tired of NOT Being Heard?

Tired of NOT Being Heard?

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Four years ago I got asked by a dear friend to sit on a panel for a Google Ventures sponsored event which was hosted by Autodesk. The topic was "Mental Toughness for Women in Tech."

I thanked my friend, and politely declined.

At the time and for the past 25 years, my clients were world-class athletes typically ages 16-22... not the best, brightest and most successful women in technology residing in San Francisco, Silicon Valley and beyond.

Full transparency, I was scared.

Why would they listen to me? I essentially helped the top 1% teens and young adults to be their best, consistently and under highly important or high stakes situations.

Thankfully my friend at Autodesk was persistent, and fortunately I decided that my voice deserved to be heard. I prepared extensively (and then even prepared a lot more), showed up, delivered, and my business was forever changed... especially after I heard this from one of the...

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The Real Secret for Leveraging Mental Toughness to Rock Disruption

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We all face the threat of someone or something disrupting our status quo.

The mere thought of disruption can be paralyzing or it can be a secret weapon. It’s all in your mindset and what you choose to do with it.

Here’s one tip to leverage Mental Toughness to rock disruption so you can get aggressive today about planning how to rise above the rest tomorrow: Keep this in mind, and you’ll be on your way to using a tool you already have in a way that most people don’t know about.

Here’s how: Use fear to drive progress.

In order to foster creativity, productivity and courage it’s important to use this emotion to your benefit rather than to your detriment. Fear can be paralyzing or it can be a super power. It depends on your mindset, how you perceive it.

Here’s a great sequence for transitioning fear into a super power for you:

1.)  Recognize a potential threat and its...

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