I have arrived in my profession. (Well, at least to myself). I was selected to speak at the North Carolina Association of CPA’s 2016 Women’s Conference last week. Thanks to Marie McLucas, CFO of Primax, who asked me if I would be interested. Would I be interested??? I not only said yes immediately, but I had that announcement on every social media platform possible.
My first legit speaking engagement. After 23 years in the industry, this was a big deal.
I was on a panel with two other women who had also gotten to the top– a CFO and a Managing Partner. Combined, we made a great mix on a panel speaking to CPA women from all across the state–all ages.
Our topic related to lessons we learned at the top. The following were my biggest takeaways:
- Be authentic, real, and vulnerable—it’s OK to be you and as a leader, your team will love you for it.
- It’s OK to say NO. You can’t be all things to all people and you definitely are not Wonder Woman. Saying no is a healthy boundary.
- Knowledge is power. Go above and beyond in learning your industry, your client, your technical skills. Learning never stops.
- Be Confident—Exude it. Walk into every meeting with it. You earned the right to be there. You worked hard and you command the respect.
Aside from having fun on this panel, I got to hang out with some pretty amazing women. Women, who need to stick together in a profession dominated by men. I hope that I left there inspiring everyone in that room, but also, with the message that we need to lift each other up and not tear each other down.