Posted on

40 Inspirations: Jennifer Severa

“I have always used physical activity, particularly running, to help balance out and combat the stresses in life. What moved me into another direction was after my second knee surgery, when I was on crutches for 3.5 months. Then, I had to learn to walk again because my leg atrophied, and during this recovery process, my five-and-a-half-year relationship ended. These two events pushed me into looking at alternative methods of healing myself, physically and mentally, including mediation in all of its forms. I then met a person, who ended up becoming one of my closest friends, and together, we started to explore Kundalini Yoga – and became avid followers of this practice.

Kundalini is a yogic science that uses sound, mantra, energy healing, exercise and meditations to release trauma, allowing the body to heal itself.  And, since I had stopped running, I started hiking, especially going on morning walks to watch the sun rise. Something about being in nature, can really refresh the soul. I like to document a lot of my journey via photography, which I have been practicing for years. Only recently I started giving away my “art” to people.

These practices and activities are just a few that help inform my days in the work environment and help me feel more balanced – and happy. Moreover, I’ve also learned through my physical struggles, an important tenet, and that is, it’s ok to ask for help. I have been fortunate to have many amazing mentors in my life and work to pay this support forward. It can be quite inspiring when you see people grow – and learn to fly on their own.

Ultimately, I believe kindness and understanding are the keys to a healthy work and personal life, and for me, the practices of meditation, kundalini yoga, convening with nature, art, and solid friendships – can help one combat what life can throw at you at any moment. To be a kinder human, I believe you must start with yourself. And, while I still have struggles – since we are human – as I try to evolve, and learn from my missteps, the challenges don’t seem as difficult.”

To learn more about her, visit Jennifer’s LinkedIn page. 

Samples of Jennifer’s photography:

What inspires you? We’d like to hear from you.

Posted on

40 Inspirations: Kristine Moe

“It all started with a ‘train friend,’ then WIM President, Elaine Padilla, a colleague I had by happenstance met while commuting to work. When I found myself in a place of feeling ‘stuck,’ my ongoing conversations with her opened possibilities: to WIM first and then to the USC Master Coaching Program. The more I heard, the more I was determined to be a part of it. With the eventual support of my department, I delved into the course, learning first about myself, so that I could better lead others through a process of inquiry, reflection and empowerment. I was hooked. (I still am!) Ultimately, I joined a few fellow converts-to-coaching, creating a mastermind group to encourage each other through the certification process and to take on future opportunities. Two years after the program, I obtained an Associate Certified Coach (ACC) credential through the International Coaching Federation (ICF) and began volunteering for the Associate Coaching Program through the USC Center for Work and Family Life.

I continue to coach inside and outside of USC because I see the benefits of these techniques in every aspect of life. I believe our mindsets influence our behaviors, which in turn, determine outcomes. How lovely it would be if we all operated with a growth mindset that impacted ourselves and those around us in positive ways. I believe this is possible. And, that is why I am excited to continue my work as a coach.

I have been mentored; I have mentored; I have been coached and led into leading and coaching through my experiences with USC WIM.  In WIM, I find a sisterhood of curiosity and ambition, of driving forward and resting, when that is needed as well. It has been my space to see possibilities and to get ‘unstuck.’ Thank you, my dear colleagues and friends of USC WIM. You are my greatest inspiration, and you have brought me the greatest satisfaction in working at USC.”

To learn more about her journey, visit Kristine’s LinkedIn page.

WIM_Moe_Mastermind
The Mastermind Group: Susan Metros, Elaine Padilla, Kristine, and Anna Quyen Nguyen

What inspires you? Know someone we should highlight? We’d like to hear from you.

 

Posted on Leave a comment

40 Inspirations: Ginger Mayerson

“I originally trained as a composer, but I have always made collages for my own amusement. The composition skills I learned as a composer have been put to good use in making collages. In 2006 I began to make them more often and more seriously so I could post them online, which was in vogue just then. I am fascinated and delighted by making art in the arrangement of images, shapes and textures that spark a new view, new angle, new thinking on the arrangement of reality in the viewer (and in me, too).

After spending decades developing the focus and intensity to make art, it’s nearly impossible to shut it off from 9-5 M-F for a day job. I’ve been very lucky at USC to work for/with people who 1) quickly figured me out; 2) knew how to channel my unique skills and strengths without exploiting them; and 3) appreciated and supported me as a person, employee, and artist. I’ve worked a few jobs in a few places, and what I’ve found at USC is a rare thing in a hard world for artists.

So I’m happy to rechannel my focus, intensity, and even inspiration, when appropriate, into my work at USC. In fact, after 21 years here, I wouldn’t know how not to do that. I would, however, like to mention that at various points in my past, I’ve managed to live on my art, but it came at the price of artistic compromise and personal sacrifice (like not seeing a doctor or dentist for over 5 years). I think it’s better to have a day job, and make the art I want when I can. Charles Ives and T.S. Eliot managed it working day jobs; I see no reason why I can’t do that, too.”

To see more of her work, visit Ginger’s website

Ginger Mayerson College (website photo and link)

 

 

What inspires you? Know someone we should highlight? We’d like to hear from you.

Posted on

USC Values Poll

The Culture Journey has started – Take the USC Values Poll

On October 14th, all USC community Faculty, Staff and Students will receive an invitation via email to take the USC Values Poll. We encourage everyone to participate.

What is it?

The Cultural Values Poll is a five-question survey (four questions plus one open-ended question) that will take about 15 minutes to complete. We’re all being asked to share our voices: our personal values, current USC values, and desired USC values. What we say will help determine who we become and will shape our future!

What happens after the Poll?

The Poll is only the first step. In December 2019, high-level results of the poll will be shared with our entire community and leaders. From January-March 2020, we’ll all be invited to participate in “culture sessions” – town halls and listening sessions – which will continue our conversations around shaping and defining our future culture.

For more information, visit the culture values poll webpage

Want to become a “partner for culture change?” Email the Working Group on Culture/Culture Team at partnerforculturechange@usc.edu. Each month, everyone on the Partners list will receive an email update on the Culture Journey. Questions? Contact Sabrina Pasztor, USC Director of Culture Transformation, at spasztor@usc.edu.

Posted on

Enter to Win

We are excited to announce that USC Women in Management (WIM), in partnership with USC Department of Administration, is offering one all-expenses-paid trip (VIP Package) for a WIM Member to attend the USC Women’s Conference: “Leading through Impact” in Washington D.C. Thursday, March 14through Saturday, March 16. Enter once here by Wednesday, January 30, noon, to win!

Don’t know if your membership is up to date? Login at the “My Account” tab at the top menu bar and check “Memberships” on your dashboard!

It’s that easy!

Posted on

Words of Wisdom from interim President Dr. Wanda Austin

On Monday, December 10, USC’s Interim President Dr. Wanda Austin greeted over 100 participants at the USC Women in Management Speaker event and shared what she had learned from her professional and personal life journey on leadership.

Dr. Austin talked about how female leaders can accomplish by focusing on what truly matters to us without being intimidated by various “labels” and prejudice. Here are some of her tips:  

  • Bring solutions: Everybody can be a critic. Let us be sure that we are the person to bring solutions instead of problems.
  • Embrace changes: Don’t look at changes as a door closing. Look around to see what new doors are opening.
  • Take time to be proactive with your team and your colleagues: Check in and ask how they are doing, what makes them unique, what motivates them. Figure out what is important to them.
  • You are not the boss: There are important stakeholders all around you. Be a conductor, try to keep everyone on the same beat and the same tune.
  • Ask good questions: You need to ask people questions to be better informed in order to make better decisions
  • Don’t be afraid to make mistakes: We learn much more from our mistakes and failure than success.
  • Be a mentor: It is rewarding to other and yourself and helps build a supportive community.

“Fight for the things that you care about, but do it in a way that will lead others to join you.” Dr. Austin used this amazing RBG quote to close her speech and received the Honorary Member Award, presented by Laura Ponder from USC Women in Management.

Posted on

A Dialogue on Gender, Diversity and Leadership

USC Marshall School of Business Professor Leigh Tost and PhD student Stehpanie Smallets presented to Women in Management (WIM) members at the Health Sciences Campus on Tuesday, November 6, 2018. Dr. Tost studies the psychological and sociological dynamics of power and status in organizations, with a particular focus on how hierarchy affects team functioning, moral judgments,and ethical decision making. Ms. Smallets’ research focuses on understanding the predictors of inequality, both psychological and structural, and creating interventions to empower those who are disadvantaged.

Prior to the event, Dr. Tost and Ms. Smallets surveyed WIM members on their thoughts,concerns, and questions related to gender, diversity, and leadership in the context of career. As part of this professional development workshop, they presented the survey results and also shared additional findings from their research areas.

A few points of interest for those that could not attend…

From the 44 WIM survey respondents, the top three areas of concern related to gender equity are the lack of opportunities for promotion, lack of leadership development opportunities and resources, and unequal pay between women and men. Dr. Tost noted that it is important to look at results like these with different filters– such as responses from members that identify as women of color. When analyzed, the top three areas of concern had differed for this smaller group.Dr. Tost and Ms. Smallets also discussed that change in organizations has been shifting from a top down model to bottom up or center out models. In today’s workplace, a group of people, usually middle management or frontline employees,make change by engaging in issue selling or identifying areas for change and then advancing that change.

We also discussed equity strategies used by employers – two of which are gender blindness and gender awareness. In addition to learning about their pros and cons, we learned that employers who engage in the gender blind strategy are seen as less open to ideas by employees and employees practice predictive vigilance with their actions.

Dr. Tost and Ms. Smallets mentioned that a future study may involve looking at age discrimination and digging deeper into individual perspectives on gender equity. Possibly asking respondents to think about what they see in their organization, what they want in their organization, and what they think about gender equity if that differs from the previous two responses. Members asked questions on how to gather data on gender discrimination and age, if there is university wide training for leadership and/or collaboration with the USC Race and Equity Center, or if they have researched gender equity differences between the faculty and staff population, union and nonunion employees, or the trans community.

Posted on

Help Celebrate World Values Day!

This Thursday, October 18, is World Values Day and marks the third year of celebrating values on a global scale!  World Values Day is aimed at increasing awareness of a global movement toward a more values-driven approach in business and society.

The organization asks us all to earnestly reflect on our value and to set these values into action every day.  We, at WIM, encourage you to Choose a Value, Take an Action, and Share it!





To learn more about World Values Day, please visit www.worldvaluesday.com

Happy World Values Day and Fight On!

Download the pdf here, and please share using the hashtag #WorldValuesDay! 

Posted on

Women’s Leadership Conference – Nov 29th

Calling all WIM members! The Los Angeles County Women’s Leadership Committee is hosting its 9th annual Women’s Leadership Conference on November 29, 2018.

Early bird registration is now open, Registration includes:

  • Access to great speakers and authors
  • A professional headshot
  • Gift bag and opportunity to win prizes throughout the day
  • Breakfast and lunch.

To register, please visit www.lacountywomensleadership.org

See you there!