the memo

Resetting Your Year

Resetting Your Year

How is it already August? Even though we are nearly 3/4 of the way through this year, it's never too late to think about how to hit the reset button and level up at work. Here are a few quick tips to get you going!

Do It Scared

Do It Scared

When was the last time you had to do something that required you to step outside of your comfort zone? Not in a “Should I switch to Doordash instead of Seamless?” type of way.* Instead, I'm talking about a situation that made you get on a group chat and get some feedback, or the type of decision-making that kept you up all night. What excuse did you give yourself that kept you from actually taking that leap?

From The Archives: What Do You Have To Lose?

From The Archives: What Do You Have To Lose?

We're combing the archives for some of our favorite articles that you may have missed. The following post, * What Do You Have To Lose,* was written by Minda Harts and speaks to our need to push ourselves to take more risks and start dreaming like we did when we were kids. Who did you want to be then? How can channel the fearlessness of the younger you, and make a bet on yourself?

Dealing with Office Mean Girls

Dealing with Office Mean Girls

Most women have dealt with a “mean girl” or two starting from their first day of school. Unfortunately, some of those mean girls grow up to become mean women – and some of those mean women become mean co-workers. In my career thus far, I’ve had the opportunity to work with a lot of amazing women, some of the most caring and intelligent women on the planet. Up until a few years ago, I couldn’t relate to the “mean girl” stories I heard about happening in the workplace… but then it happened to me.

What Are You Bringing To The Group Meeting

What Are You Bringing To The Group Meeting

Working in groups doesn’t end in school. Depending on the industry you're in, collaborating and working well with others is a prerequisite for being successful.

We all know what a bad teammate looks like, but what qualities make you a good team member?

Here are four tips to make you a better teammate:

Step Up: Have you ever been in a group or committee and someone had to be the “leader…”

The Memo's "Always Ready" Career Toolkit

The Memo's "Always Ready" Career Toolkit

How ready are you for your next big career opportunity? If the person who could change your life offered you a shot at your dream career right now, would you be ready?

You need to be prepared for what comes next, even if you aren’t certain what that next opportunity looks like.

Here are a few tips to make sure you #stayready...

Your First (or Brand New) Job: Lessons Learned from Women Who Have Been There

By: Grace Peters, Editorial Analyst, The Memo

“There are two kinds of people in the world. Those who walk into a room and say, 'There you are' and those who say, 'Here I am.'” - Pauline Phillips

Some new hires are the “here I am!” kind of employees: seeking praise for every accomplishment. Managers do not always have time for that. The “there you are” new employees, on the other hand, spend their time listening and observing. They watch and listen carefully to get the lay of the land. They learn how things are done and follow their supervisor’s instructions.

For those of you embarking on your first job this summer, here are a few basic tips – including some things many wish they had known at their first jobs. These tips are also useful for those of you transitioning careers and beginning at a brand new workplace.

1. Learn office procedures and follow basic protocol. – Gail E., Attorney

2. Follow directions and ask questions if you’re not sure how your supervisor wants something done (but don’t be a pest!) – Liz L., Professor

3. Understand office politics. – Jessica B., Teacher

4. Be friendly, but don’t gossip! – Gracie P., Intern

5. Be diplomatic. – Theresa K., Writer

6. Watch out for other burnouts! The people who complain all day about the job and directly or indirectly try to bring you down in the process. Don’t let them! – Sam C.

7. Read a lot of articles and books about your industry. Know how to use business software. If you’re confused about something, use Google rather than giving up at the first roadblock! – Ellen S., Realtor

8. Network, Network, NETWORK. – Everyone!

Tell us about your first job! What would you add to this list?

Make a Note to Do Great Things!

Make a Note to Do Great Things!
Every January, a few friends and I decide on a theme for the year, typically pulled from some popular phrase we all know. We take the theme and use it to set our actions and intentions for the year.

Meet Cee Sando, Social Media Marketer, Fashion Stylist

Trust Your Gut

1) Do you remember the moment when you said, I have to pursue my dreams and do work that I am passionate about?

Absolutely! I was living in Toronto, at a job I could not stand and that I dreaded going to every day. I KNEW that it was absolutely NOT the life I was meant to be living. I vowed to do everything I could to drastically change my situation. First, I did the responsible thing and started saving every single penny – I downsized my home, liquidated most of my material items, and even sold my car to be able to have as much saved money as possible. Then I did the ultimate crazy thing and
moved thousands of miles away, to a city I had never lived in, and where I did not know a single person. Plus, I had no idea how I would support myself. My gut told me that I needed to be there at that time and I listened. Craziest and best decision I ever made!

2) What’s next for you in 2016?

This year has already been a huge one for me! I can honestly say that I have never been better or happier than right now! I have finally come to terms with being a typical Gemini in all things, including my career. For years, I battled between focusing on practical/ business/ left brain pursuits versus artistic/creative/right brain interests. I have now created a career that is the perfect marriage of the two! I know I am the only person able to do what I do exactly in the way I do it, and that is incredibly gratifying. I love being a wardrobe stylist, working on set and dressing my private clients just as much as I love putting together social media marketing campaigns for retail stores, training beauty corporations on how to make the best use of Snapchat, and posting on Instagram on behalf of a favorite fashion brand. Merging my love of fashion, beauty, and lifestyle with my obsession for social media in this way is what my education, training and experience has been leading me to. I have a number of fashion editorials coming out in print this season and I did costume design for my first film, which comes out this summer. I also have a limited list of incredible social media clients that I am super proud of!

3) Where does your inspiration come from?

Everywhere! From a cup of tea, the street style I see on daily walks through my Hollywood neighborhood, or the ideas I get during my yoga practice... all of my experiences inform my work.

4) How important is a good support system?

Having a good support system is huge! As an entrepreneur, I know having the right support can mean the difference between success and failure. No woman is an island and it is a waste of time and energy to think you need to do, be, or handle everything on your own. When I first moved to Los Angeles, I did not know a single person and it has taken me time to find the right group of positive, driven, energetic people to surround myself with. It has been 5 years and I am still working on it, but I am finally in a place where I feel brave and comfortable enough to turn to my system and ask for help when I need it.

5) What advice would you give women who want to start a business and/or pursue their dream?

The best advice I have ever received and the one thing I will say time and time again is TRUST YOUR GUT. You have all the answers to every possible question you can think of, because only you know what is best for you! Learn to listen to that inner voice that might be very quiet right now. Regardless of how weird, crazy, or counter intuitive the voice might seem, trust what you hear, and everything else will come naturally.

6) You’ve been in the entertainment/fashion industry for some time now, what are some lessons learned?

I'll double back to the previous answer here, because after making so many mistakes I realized that if I had been able to trust my gut a lot sooner, I could have saved myself a whole lot of money, time and disappointment. Besides this, the best lessons I have learned are:

  1. Stay true to yourself.

  2. Be 100% true to your word.

  3. Punctuality is a game changer.

  4. Impossibility is relative

  5. Jettison trends, wear what makes you feel like your best self.

  6. You only have 1 pair of feet so be good to them, even if that means wearing sneakers to work!

7) What are a few of your favorite must-haves?

 My phone (obviously)

 Lip Balm

 My rescue pit bull/ service animal, Stokely

 My styling kit (because I never know when I might receive a last-minute booking)

 Tea in a travel mug

 A killer pair of sunglasses (right now I am absolutely obsessed with a new local brand, Burkinabae)

To learn more about Cee Sando, and to see some of her great work, visit her website, Facebook, and Twitter

A New 24 on the Shot Clock

Photos/Images by   #WOCinTech Chat

Photos/Images by #WOCinTech Chat

If you are reading today’s Memo, we made it to see another Monday! I challenge you to look at today differently--today is not just another Monday! Let’s try and see this week as another opportunity to go after our career goals. Set an intention right after reading this--to do one thing this week that puts you one step closer to your goals. It might be asking for that long awaited raise, ironing your clothes tonight, in order to give you a little extra time tomorrow to savor the moments, or setting time aside this afternoon to research your new job. Whatever it is, I encourage you not to put it off another day. In 2013, my little brother wrote a song called Go On, one verse goes: “Every day that I wake, every day that I get is a new, fresh, 24 on the shot clock..I’mma go on.” This week you get another shot towards the life and career you desire.

Below are five tips to help you look at this week differently:

Have faith; even if Tuesday starts to look rocky---set your intention!

Surround yourself with people that want to see you win. Don’t listen to the haters!

Never be afraid to fail. A winner never quits on themselves!

Be you! You were never created to be like everyone else. We love you just the way you are.

Patience is real. Remember, Rome wasn’t built in a day, but there was a process. Respect your process, which leads to PROGRESS!

Cheers to an awesome week! Tell us what you intend to do this week, so we can root you on!

Age Ain't Nothing But A Number

Age Ain't Nothing But A Number

As you can see, age is nothing but a number! In the words of Audre Lorde, “If I didn’t define myself for myself, I would be crunched into other people’s fantasies for me and eaten alive.” 

Be The Captain of Your Career!

Be The Captain of Your Career!

You are a strong woman and made to be fearless.  Don’t let fear rob another day of your confidence and clarity! You can’t control everything that happens in your life, but you can take accountability for the plan you put in place for your success!

Public Speaking Tips For Women

Public Speaking Tips For Women

Whether you’re giving an update in a meeting, sharing a presentation on a research study, introducing yourself to a large group, talking about a new sales technique, or waxing poetic about the state of the global economy, the important thing is to know your material well enough so you’re not constantly searching your brain for new information while you’re speaking. If you’re already nervous and youalso have no idea what you’re talking about, it will only amplify the nervousness.

Don't Stop Believing!

Don't Stop Believing!

The band Journey made a song called, Don't Stop Believing. The chorus goes, "Don't stop believin', Hold on to that feelin', Streetlight people, Don't stop believin' Hold on." This song reminds me of when I was a young girl and would practice writing my signature on countless pieces of loose leaf paper.  Did you do that too? As kids we thought someone might want our autograph one day. As little girls we had no problem dreaming BIG! Anything we dreamed of--we pictured ourselves doing it.  You could be a teacher, a movie star, and a doctor all in the same day and no one could tell you differently.  When I was young, my cousin Frank and I used to ride our bicycles around town and pretend to be police officers.  We had badges and everything! My fantasy shift always ended early because I couldn’t stay outside as long as Frank.  Where am I going with all of this? Don’t stop believing in yourself!  Let’s get back to the days when we saw ourselves climbing the highest mountains and nothing could stand in our way.  If you want to go back to school; take the necessary steps.  If you want to travel more; start saving! If you are still waiting for love; don’t give up! Your dreams and goals are important and should be handled with care.  Find your Monday motivation and don’t stop believing!
Ps: My cousin Frank grew up and became an actor. He has starred in several television shows portraying law enforcement officers (smile). Dreams do come true!


Let's Get In Formation

Yesterday, like many others I watched the Super Bowl and over indulged in a lot of junk food. Some of us watched because our favorite team was playing, some watched because we wanted to be social, and others watched to see the Beyoncé concert. While watching the game, I thought a lot about team work!

Teams are better than a single player. Teams can be hard to beat, but individual players get hurt, get ejected out of the game, or just have an off night. I believe the most well rounded people build their teams down to each person. Most of us probably don’t know many of the player’s names outside of Peyton Manning and Cam Newton. Having a good quarterback is extremely important, but the Broncos played and won as a team. When you’re part of a team, you want to put your teammates in a position to succeed and you never want to let them down.

Who is on your team? Some of your teammates might include: family members, a spouse or partner, children, colleagues, and friends. What if you started your day with the initial goal in mind—I want to enable each person on my team to succeed. How would that change the “plays” you make if that was your goal? How would that impact their role to enable your success? Can you point to the people on your team and say they are supported enough by you and the rest of the team to perform at their best?

This way of thinking can be applied in your home, in the office, and in your career development. I think team development can be easily overlooked! Let’s keep it real, no one is getting paid enough to get any less than that kind of support from you. Let’s do our best to build the best teams and be an award winning team member. If we play well together, we win together! Pass this memo along to one of your team members!

5 Steps for Effective Feedback

5 Steps for Effective Feedback

Use Phrases For Starters

  • Tell me how you would like to receive helpful and constructive feedback from me.
  •  Describe the best way that I can give you feedback as we move along this project, such as e-mail, phone, face-to-face time, or meetings.
  •  I can tell you are extremely busy.  How do you recommend I get feedback to you in a timely manner?

Chelsea Billingsley, Project Engineer, SEH

Chelsea Billingsley, Project Engineer, SEH

I never actually had a dream to become an engineer - I sort of fell in love with it after I started working. My internship at the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment helped me understand how fulfilling of a career it could be. At 19 years old, I had no idea the breadth of what being an engineer could encompass, but I experienced the tangible ability to help people both improve their quality of life and natural surroundings through water and wastewater treatment working with the State Health Department.

5 Quotes To Help You Refocus Before 2016

1) “Do one thing every day that scares you” –Eleanor Roosevelt

2) “Your thoughts and your feelings create your life” –Lisa Nichols

3) “Life is both too short and too long to do work you aren’t totally passionate about” –Lisa Nicole Bell

4) “Don’t be afraid your life will end; be afraid that it will never begin” * –Grace Hansen*

5) “Never fear shadows. They simply mean there’s light shining somewhere nearby” –Ruth E. Renkel