2020 was a tough year.
A year where many of us saw our plans crushed by a series of events, most notably COVID-19. During ILTA’s Ascend 2020 planning meetings held in January, the Women Who Lead Advisory Group began planning programming for the “deep south.” There was interest in continuing the conversation of women’s self-empowerment, mentoring and growth discussed during ILTACON 2019, and taking the message on the road for in person meetings in New Orleans, La; Atlanta, Ga.; Birmingham, AL, and possibly Florida or Nashville. We’d planned to schedule one week in November of 2020 and travel to each city for in-person events.
When COVID-19 derailed our plans, we re-imagined how we could pull this off in a virtual environment, which evolved into a fantastic program transforming the original message into a virtual educational retreat. Instead of an automobile/airline road trip, we’re planning a virtual road trip with a full-day agenda that showcases each city’s women leaders and cultural assets, while also providing relevant content for women leaders. It’s a way to not only place the focus on the women leaders in each city, but to also highlight each city’s culture.
We will showcase the young rising stars in legal technology, governmental operations and corporate businesses while also offering sessions to help women leaders embrace their unique leadership abilities. We’ve included breakout sessions discussing technology trends and providing tips for women planning career strategies after COVID. We’ve also included sections that target the city’s unique cultural assets, providing participants a window view of what makes each city special! The agenda saves the best for last, as strong women leaders were invited to speak on how women are changing the world in 2021!
Each city will target a specific topic of discussion to complete the overall theme of women empowerment and growth.
- New Orleans: Using Self-Reflection to Overcome Imposter Syndrome
- Atlanta: Intentional Self-confidence 101: Feeling Confident in your own skin
- The Carolina’s: The Inimitability Factor: Appreciating Your Uniqueness
- Florida: Strategies for Promoting Yourself as the skillful woman you are
Secondarily, we’ve invited young professionals, senior women leaders, professional women leaders who are also young mothers, and volunteer allies in each city to explore each topic’s impact. These discussions will identify cooperative approaches to convey the commonality that we all share as we grow in our careers. They will also provide strategies for supporting the growth of future women leaders.
On a personal note, there’s always been a special place in my heart for supporting women, especially young women who are starting their career path and learning to navigate the workforce. Whether your chosen profession is in technology or other roles that are traditionally held by men, there is significant value in locating someone who’s already walked the path and is not only willing to share the benefit of their knowledge, but to also provide a safe space for young women to share their goals and ambitions.
COVID-19 and the political unrest has only increased the challenges that young people are faced with, further complicating successful career navigation. Many millennials are also juggling the added responsibility of parenthood. The work/life balance conversation has mutated into an age old discussion where young women, faced with the added pressures of virtual work at home while parenting, feel forced to consider leaving the workforce and sacrificing their careers in the process. We plan to offer opportunities to further discuss creative approaches to resolving these issues, forming connections for potential mentoring agendas, and providing an outlet where multiple generations of women can benefit from shared experiences.
This is where real change begins, so let’s get to work! Invest in yourself and join ILTA’s Women Who Lead on our first official Roadshow where we will explore, learn, share and grow! Our first stop is New Orleans, Louisiana on Thursday, January 28, 2021 and our Keynote speaker is New Orleans Mayor Latoya Cantrell. Get on board and take the ride with us! #ILTARoadie