Some events make you laugh. Some events help you learn. But is the rare event that makes you both laugh and learn.
The Marketer’s Community event brought both laughter and insights.
The panel discussion was focused on women who lead, comprised of the most impressive marketing women in our community:
- Meredith Jurek – CMO from Self Esteem Brands
- Margaret Murphy – Founder and CEO of Bold Orange
- Jill Renslow – SVP of Business Development at the Mall of America
- Angie Andresen – Managing Director, Communication & Member Services at Minnesota Public Radio
Through laugh-out-loud stories and bold strategies, these marketing leaders shared their challenges, opportunities and pivotal points of their journey. With authentic leadership, they offered insight, wisdom and laughter to audience members who aspire to up-level their career and life.
Here are my top-three favorite nuggets o’ wisdom that made me laugh and learn:
Laugh and Learn Moment #1: Share Your Story with Joy and Laughter
Meredith Jurek had the audience rolling with laughter every time she picked up the mic. She shared her story, and career trajectory to CMO of Self-Esteem brands, with joy and self-deprecating humor.
Here’s my favorite example (and favorite quote from the night!):
“Sometimes you need to hear ‘You go girl!’. And sometimes you just need a kick in the ass.” –Meredith Jurek
Meredith shared so many wonderful insights and moments of wisdom that I could have written this entire blogpost just about her. And at first, I picked one or two to focus on. But as I went through the editing process, I realized that a mico-view did a disservice to the macro-lesson.
The big take-away from Meredith is how to position yourself as an authentic leader.
We live in a world where “executive presence” means “stiff and boring.”
But Meredith was a shining example of what it feels like to be in the presence of a leader who fearlessly displays leadership and a sense of humor.
What’s more inspirational than that?!
Laugh and Learn Moment #2: Work-Life Balance
Angie Andresen talked openly about the importance of having supportive friends throughout your life and career.
Because you need to be able to vent, commiserate and celebrate with people who truly understand.
In particular, Angie appreciated her circle of working moms whom she could share her joys, fears and triumphs with. Because balancing work and parenthood is #hardwork.
My favorite moment was when Angie shared a story of when her teenage daughter became annoyed that she wasn’t free to drive her to an event:
Her teenage daughter: “Ugh. Mom, why do you have to work?”
Angie Andresen: “Because I’m really good at what I do and they need me.”
Her teenage daughter: “No, but seriously though.”
That story made me laugh out loud because that sounds like something I would have said to my parents when I was a teenager.
You can’t prove it.
I burned the footage.
Laugh and Learn Moment #3: Challenge Yourself
Jill shared a personal story about one of her big “ah-ha!” moments at the Mall of America.
She absolutely loved the people she worked with, saw a long-term future with her company and deeply believed in the vision and mission of the MOA. However, she’d hit a rut in her career. She felt stagnant, stuck and unmotivated.
We’ve all been there.
That moment when you enjoy your company, but feel like you’re “just not being challenged anymore?” Yeah, that one.
Jill sought out a trusted mentor who gave her surprising advice.
He pointed out that it is incredibly rare to love a company, mission and team the way that Jill loved the MOA. If she left the MOA, what are the chances she would feel that deep connection to her next company?
Slim to none.
So, he advised, instead of feeling like you aren’t being challenged, go out there and find your own challenge. Ask yourself what mountain you should climb next. Find out what other people are doing at your company to learn more about their jobs or create a new project that excites you.
It’s not always the company’s responsibility to challenge you. Sometimes, you need to challenge yourself.
Clearly, Jill took this advice to heart. She stayed with the MOA, the place she loves, and thrives in her role as the SVP of Business Development.
Furthermore, she pays it forward. She works with her team and presses them to get clear on what they want, what challenges they want to tackle.
“Don’t assume people – especially leadership – knows where you want to go. Raise your hand and speak up.”
– Jill Renslow
Events like this are fascinating because different “nuggets o’ wisdom” resonate with different people.
For example, I enjoyed Jill’s story and tucked it in the back of my mind as a tool to use in the future.
But the woman next to me, a business development manager, resonated with Jill’s story because she is going through the exact same thing right now. Jill’s story mirrored her own. The advice could not have come at a better time and it went deep.
Later, that woman told me that Jill’s story made her completely re-think how she was approaching her career and how to take more responsibility and re-engage with a company she loves.
And that, ladies and gentlemen, is why I love events like this.
Events that make you think and strike a chord with you. You might not even know what’s going to hit home and then suddenly “Wah-BAM!” #insight. And one little thing can put you on a completely new course and trajectory.
Find Your Laugh and Learn Moment
Want to expand your network? Aspire to up-level your career? Looking for an event that can make you laugh and learn?
I highly recommend the Marketer’s Community events. They make me laugh and learn.
And if ever the speakers aren’t funny, I’ll be there, and I’ll make you laugh. Guaranteed.
Because I’m hilarious. And I should know, I laugh at all my own jokes.
About the Blogger
Rachel Brewster is a motivational comedian, keynote speaker and public speaking coach. She helps professionals sharpen their speaking skills to become an Unforgettable Leader.