I recently attended AWE’s Oct. 14 “Power Matters Conference” in Omaha. Nearly 75 women from the energy industry joined me in a quest to expand our knowledge about fuel sources, energy markets and environmental issues. The speakers – whose biographies represented decades of higher education, hundreds of professional risks and opportunities, and the continuous paradigm of work/life balance – inspired me to do and be more than I am today as a woman working in the energy industry.
Sue Kelly, APPA President & CEO, encouraged me to become indispensable as a subject matter expert. Susan Landahl, senior vice president of Exelon Generation, was cautious about subsidies for renewables while expressing compassion for the closure of Pilgrim where her career first began. And, as she does in this video clip, author and Survivor contestant Holly Hoffman inspired me to believe the leadership flame within each of us is an individual’s choice to light.
After attending the “Power Matters Conference,” I am resolved to use my power and influence to:
1) Help others succeed. One of the best parts of my job as a manager is to give my staff opportunities, encourage them to try new things, and, through their experiences, help our corporate communications department achieve more.
2) Ask questions, especially when others don’t. Formerly a high school English teacher, I enjoyed the dialogue I had with students who asked questions. I believe in the concept of “life-long learning” and advise others to be selfish in exploring that which interests you.
3) See things from others’ points of view. I may not always agree with a colleague or friend’s political, philosophical, or management position, but unless I try to understand why they think as they do, I will only see my own. To get the best view of the world, I need to open my window as far as I can.
If I do these three things with a sincere and meaningful heart, I can’t help but become a better person. And isn’t that where the best power lies?