[Champion Profile] Emerging Women Inspires Women to Shape Future
“Dare to live the truth of who we are.” —Sera Beak
An idea is born
Chantal Pierrat had it all. An MBA and corporate career on the fast track. But something wasn’t right. She felt like she wasn’t being true to herself. She was often the only woman in the room and found herself trying to fit into a male ideal of what made a good executive. But that wasn’t her, that wasn’t who she was.
Those feminine traits that she was repressing—connection, compassion, empathy—were exactly the way our connected, online economy was heading. And sitting there in a board room surrounded by men, she had an “aha” moment. She had started to see a shift taking place around the world. Women were emerging as true leaders. Sitting there, she realized that women needed to embrace their feminine side, because those very traits, the ones that are so often dismissed in executive circles, are exactly what the world desperately needed. And right there, Emerging Women was born. Thinking back on it, Pierrat reflected, “My whole life led up to Emerging Women.”
“Emerging Women is a deep seed that has been planted in the soul of all the women who have been touched and will be touched.” — Sobonfu Somé
She built it and they came
A major part of Pierrat’s vision was to bring together women from all over the world to inspire, teach, guide and empower women to reach their full potential as feminine leaders and entrepreneurs. So she created the Emerging Women Live Conference to weave feminine leadership and authenticity into business, and to create a world where women have a strong voice in shaping our future.
Her first step was to send out heartfelt emails to some of the world’s most influential and inspiring women to invite them to speak at the conference. And the response she got absolutely blew her away. The universe heard her call and answered with an emphatic “Yes!” Arianna Huffington agreed to come and then Dr. Jane Goodall, Brené Brown, Elizabeth Gilbert, Dr. Tererai Trent and many more.
Another influential speaker, author Tara Sophia Mohr, jumped at the chance to speak at the conference, "A lot of my favorite women on the planet, and women who truly inspire me, were going to be there. I wanted to be there," Mohr said.
A new paradigm
The Emerging Women Live Conference is all about creating leadership that focuses on women’s innate strengths, such as intuition, authenticity, compassion and vulnerability. It’s all about adding a different style of leadership to the traditional male-centric model. The idea is that with both male and female points of view represented in the marketplace, we’ll create better products, come up with more effective solutions to world problems and end up with more profitable businesses. And, in giving women the confidence to raise their hands, to participate and to lead, we all win.
“We have to surround ourselves with like-spirited people who are willing to cheer for us when we walk into the arena, who are willing to pick us up when we get our butts kicked, and who are willing to remind us that we’re enough.” — Brené Brown
In the words of Pierrat, Emerging Women Live continues to be “about giving this gift to women across the world ... taking care of the rest of the world ... Bringing in the consciousness of the rest of the world to our work. Paying attention to how our work can make the world a better place. Building in systems where you are actually giving back and actively supporting women in other countries."
Bringing it full circle
What began as the annual Emerging Women Live conferences, has now diversified to include podcasts (Grace & Fire), a blog (Rise & Actualize) and most recently, Power Circles.
Power Circles are groups of 7-8 women that meet with a facilitator in person or virtually via Google Hangouts once a month for six months. The Power Circles are dedicated to consciousness, authenticity, and staying true to women’s feminine nature, all while navigating the intricacies of leading, growing, or starting a business or creative endeavor.
“So many people feel like they have to do it on their own, and an event like this can remind you that there are countless other women who are involved in this project and this journey... The connection is already there.” — Kelly McGonigal
Pierrat started Emerging Women with the idea of having these circles. It just took longer because it's a harder thing to scale than the live events. "I feel like I have never been so inspired and felt so supported as I do when I'm in a community of women. I think that especially when I've been in transition—career transition or giving birth—just choose any life event, I find I lean on my sisterhood sometimes more than my husband, and that's where I get great perspective and empathy and that feeling of being held," said Pierrat.
Pierrat “wanted to create a circle of women, a place where women could go, when they are about to start something or birth something and needed specific support around the work they do." And in this goal she has been wildly successful.
“Each time a woman stands up for herself, she stands up for all women.” — Maya Angelou
Emerging Women, it seems, has come along at the perfect time. It’s a time when the needs of the world are aligning with the skills women naturally bring to the table, such as collaboration, communication and sharing. More and more women are coming into their own, and Emerging Women is here to help shepherd them along their journey.
Changing lives without limitation
Although in the early stages of working with Gloo, Pierrat has high hopes for how the platform will help her empower more women around the world more effectively. “We’re focused on building a network that’s engaged and monetized” said Pierrat, “and we’re hoping that network helps more women be able to scale and monetize as well.” She loves the ease of connectivity that Gloo provides. According to Pierrat, Gloo gives women the personal space to shine but also helps them develop and share content that provides women with the confidence and inspiration to live true and authentic lives.
For more, visit emergingwomen.com.