Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life? –Mary Oliver

Success is a personal journey. It is about understanding what is important to you and embracing the opportunities to learn and grow from every experience and relationship.

I love being a mother, an impactful contributor in my workplace, and making a difference in my community. Success for me is doing all of these things well, however, balancing everything can be challenging. I’ve learned not to treat the different aspects of my life separately, but to create synergies between them, recognizing each experience impacts my success. However, these synergies must be realistic, tempered by capacity and driven by personal goals and priorities. For me, success is about embracing opportunities to both learn and grow as a leader and to have a positive impact on the organizations I serve and the people I mentor. Done well, this is truly a rewarding and motivating experience.

I’ve been fortunate to have owned a small business, work for large corporations that foster risk-taking and leadership skills, and to serve on a variety of boards. All of these experiences have and continue to be opportunities for me to learn, grow, and build new relationships. These experiences and relationships make me a more valued contributor to my organization and help build my reputation as a confident and trusted business leader and partner.

Expanding my network in various industries and communities provides a diverse and informative resource for fresh perspectives and best practices of the broader community. Fostering relationships and gathering the experience and ideas of others ignites creative thinking and innovation while demonstrating a willingness to embrace and lead change.

Learning investments should benefit you, your team, and your organization. “Lift while you climb” is an expression used by my mentor that has always resonated with me. It is rewarding to share what you learn and support the development of others. Success should be measured against your personal goals and the achievement of the team. Just like being a mother, if you are not fostering your child’s development for success, you’re not succeeding as a parent.

How has education affected your career?

I’m a lifelong learner—always taking a course, attending a webinar, or participating in a network. My desire for ideas and opportunities to make a difference is fueled by always learning and listening. It has rewarded me greatly.

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? How did you deal with it?

I’ve always worked in organizations where diversity was valued and where the best contributor and collaborator were promoted—gender was not a factor. In my role as a mentor to women, I stress the importance of contribution, impact, and value to the business.