Jan. 10, 2020

The myth of the "too much" woman

The myth of the "too much" woman

If you are a woman who has always been labeled "too much", our inaugural episode is for you!

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Transcript

Laura Khalil:   0:00
[00:00:00.120] This is brave by design. Episode 1 on the myth of the too much woman.

Laura Khalil:   0:00
 [00:00:08.340] Welcome to brave. By design I'm your host Laura Khalil. I'm an entrepreneur coach and speaker. I love thinking big exploring the power of personal development and sharing the best strategies from thought leaders and pioneers in business to empower ambitious women and allies to bravely rise and thrive. Let's get started.

Laura Khalil:   0:00
[00:00:32.910] Hey everyone. Welcome to the very first episode of brave by design. I am so excited to be here with you. We are just in to the second week of January 2020 a whole new decade and I have felt so inspired to start this podcast as a branch of what I love to talk about and what I love to research and share sort of the best of the best with you. For those of you who are new to me I would love to spend some time on this episode introducing who I am.

Laura Khalil:   0:00
[00:01:11.430] Why I do what I do and giving you some inspiration and ideas to move forward with. So my name is Laura Khalil. I work today as an executive coach and keynote speaker and now podcast host. But my life started out actually quite differently. I don't know anyone who graduates from college or university and the first thing they think to themselves is you know what I'm gonna do I'm gonna be an executive coach and I'm going to go work with the heads of industry helping them figure out their leadership stuff pretty much doesn't happen that way.

Laura Khalil:   0:00
[00:01:48.660] So I'll tell you how it came up through the ranks to do what I do. I actually am a storyteller by trade I worked in marketing and communications. Early on in my career that's where I began and I started my career in technology in Silicon Valley. I was young I was bold. I was determined I was ambitious and you know I'd always been told by my parents who were immigrants that if I wanted to get ahead I would have to do that by really acting with a lot of ownership over my projects.

Laura Khalil:   0:00
[00:02:26.960] My dad always said to me Laura I want you to go into work and act like you own the place because that level of ownership that level of accountability is what's going to help people trust you and help you to rise within organizations. And so I did I would go into these board meetings often as the only woman. And if you are in technology you know what those rooms look like it's often a bunch of guys and maybe a couple of women there and I would advocate for my projects.

Laura Khalil:   0:00
[00:02:57.350] And after doing this for a while. A funny thing happened. My boss came to me and he said Laura I have some feedback for you and I said OK. What do you got. And he said well you know I've been hearing from guys in the boardroom that you're kind of intimidating them so we're gonna need you to soften your language. And you know maybe if you could just smile more that would really help. I mean you can imagine how shocking and upsetting this can be. To hear that you are just too much they can't handle you.

Laura Khalil:   0:00
[00:03:36.290] And what shocked me more than anything was I didn't understand why I was being given that feedback when I was acting just like the guys so I couldn't actually change my personality. I couldn't change who I was. I would try but then people say hey you're acting weird. I thought well yeah it's because you told me that I'm too much and eventually I ended up getting laid off from that company in part because I just could not be nice enough and I couldn't smile enough and soften my language and I was really dejected by that I was extremely upset because I had invested so much and so I'd go to the next company and I'd go to the next company and I go to the next company and I would keep hearing this refrain that you know if you've ever been afraid or you've known a woman in the office who you label as the bitch she's you know very determined.

Laura Khalil:   0:00
[00:04:41.970] She's very bold she's really a go getter. You know she's unafraid. And then we sort of turn on her. That's who I felt that I was. And so I ran through my career for a number of years actually took six years of me hitting my head against this wall in full time employment in Silicon Valley until 2013 and in 2013 I said you know Laura the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and expecting a different result. And at that point I was actually getting yet another layoff. I had been collecting what I like to call and you know unofficial Ph.D. in getting laid off and I said all right enough is enough.

Laura Khalil:   0:00
[00:05:30.580] I am the common denominator in this challenge. So the only thing I can do is figure out a way to change my circumstances and change my outlook to thrive. Now one of the things that I had always dreamed of doing was starting my own business. I'd always been really scared to do it. Very unsure of myself but it had always been in the back of my head. And so I said Well this has gotta be it. What what other time am I going to do this. And so I knew my marketing stuff I knew technology very well I knew how to speak to developers very well that was my expertise and I knew that my personality just really wasn't well suited for the types of companies that I had been working with so I got laid off from my last job and I said alright you know what I'm gonna do I'm going to go create that web site.

Laura Khalil:   0:00
[00:06:29.940] I'm going to go change my title on LinkedIn and I'm telling everyone I know that I am a developer marketing consultant and I did over the course of a weekend. I just pulled myself up by the bootstraps I said Listen I'm not going to change personality wise. So something else in my environment has to change and I put myself out there and what actually ended up happening is sort of even beyond my expectations at the time I ended up building a very successful consulting business actually within the first six weeks of launching the business.

Laura Khalil:   0:00
[00:07:07.420] I got my first fortune 500 client and I remember walking to go meet them for the interview and being really nervous and really scared and thinking OK Laurie you've got to do this. You know your stuff and just be yourself because you can't be anyone but you. And I realized after I got that client and because I got that client that all of the traits that had penalized me in full time employment were actually my greatest assets. As an entrepreneur because in one setting I was too much but in the other setting I was a real leader.

Laura Khalil:   0:00
[00:07:50.360] And so I ended up building a very successful developer marketing consulting business working with some of the largest brands in the world on global initiatives. It was fun it was exciting and I felt so understood and appreciated by my clients. I ran that business for a number of years and as I would run it I'd have you know other women coming to talk to me or I'd be speaking at conferences about my experience and I realized that you don't need to quit your job if you don't want to to be successful you don't need to quit your job to be yourself.

Laura Khalil:   0:00
[00:08:32.500] And so as I began to learn more about human behavior and really devour that topic and study that topic I began to coach more individuals on how to really be successful where ever they are in their life. And today my business has transitioned into talent from going and telling those developer marketing stories to actually helping individuals who are in leadership or aspire to leadership to rewrite the stories that they live by. And so it's been a really exciting full circle moment. A lot of my clients are in tech and so I love to go back into that world now and be an ally and advocate for men and women who do want to thrive who do recognize that there is work to be done on both sides.

Laura Khalil:   0:00
[00:09:29.140] If you have ever felt like you are the too much woman or the too much person maybe you fear that you have been labeled a bitch maybe you fear that you have been labeled difficult. Remember that for some people you're too much and for other people you are just right. So whether you are within an organization or you are an entrepreneur and you are working through this find your allies find your advocates especially within corporate go find those sponsors who believe in you because we can't do this alone. And one thing I say to women quite a bit is you do want to find people who can ally with you an advocate with you laterally but also vertically.

Laura Khalil:   0:00
[00:10:17.150] So you want to look at people who are above you in the organization. Women have a tendency to go talk to their peers and that's great and helpful. But we also need individuals who are above us who can really help advocate for us and our programs and in those meetings when it gets tough to back you up. So as I said we're launching this podcast. It's right around second week of January and I want to let you know about something I have coming up. I'm kicking off the brave by design masterclass in early February.

Laura Khalil:   0:00
[00:10:58.490] This is for men and women who you know may feel a little stuck bored or not sure what you're going to do with the year or decade ahead perhaps you have some ideas of where you want to go and what you want to accomplish but it could seem completely pie in the sky to you right now or you're just sort of confused and you haven't put any work towards it and maybe you're not even sure where to start. So the master class is working directly with me in a group format over a couple of sessions to develop the clarity you're seeking and the action plan to get you there.

Laura Khalil:   0:00
[00:11:37.150] If that sounds good to you I'm going to be revealing more about the program in upcoming episodes and you can also follow me on Instagram at force of bad ass free or find me on Lincoln where he will be announcing the program. This is a small group program. We are only going to take a few people for the program launching in February so stay tuned and I'll be revealing more about that in a couple of weeks. You know it's funny because I purposefully position the masterclass after we get through all of this new year's resolution B.S. as some of you may know the research the research shows 80 percent of New Year's resolutions are abandoned by February.

Laura Khalil:   0:00
[00:12:26.600] These resolutions are often knee jerk reactions. I want to lose weight. I want to start eating better. I want to go to the gym and what happens. They drop off. So this is not about resolutions. The masterclass is really perfect for those nagging thoughts that you've had or dreams you may continue to see surface over and over but you don't know what to do with them. And they just kind of keep stream streaming in and out of your consciousness. If you have felt like that and you have felt like you need clarity and you need an action plan moving forward the brave by design masterclass is really going to help you so stay tuned for more about that and that's it for our first episode.

Laura Khalil:   0:00
[00:13:13.540] I want to thank you for joining me and remember to subscribe through your favorite app so you can stay up to date and I would love your review if you've enjoyed this episode. Please leave a review and comment on Apple podcasts. You can also keep in touch with me online. You can find me on LinkedIn and I'm also on Instagram at @forceofbadassery. All that information will be available in the show notes. Until next time. Stay Brave.