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The Power of Your Voice and Your Story: Join the Movement

Posted By Marlene Williamson, Wednesday, February 28, 2018

What an amazing Watermark Conference for Women! We're thrilled that you chose to spend this past Friday with us – more than 6,500 women and men marking Watermark's 25th Anniversary with inspiring speakers, new connections and a common vision of more women in leadership positions.

As Reese Witherspoon asked: "Does anyone feel we're on the precipice of something very different?"

I certainly do – and I am so inspired by Reese's commitment to giving women a stronger voice. A commitment so strong that she's taking matters into her own hands to bring better female roles – and authentic stories – to the forefront.

I am equally inspired by Amal Clooney's story – and how inspired she is by the students of Florida and young people everywhere.

Their messages – and those of all our speakers – carry a powerful thread: We all have a voice. We must use it.

Turn Up the Volume
At Watermark, we use our voice in a number of ways. March, in fact, is Voice Month, with exciting programs including Your Story is Your Power with Elle Luna and Susie Herrick and Is Your Voice as Powerful as You Are?, a hands-on, interactive workshop with voice coach Hillary Wicht.

We firmly believe that the power of our voices, backed by data, will help us reach gender parity in the workplace. We know that companies with women in leadership roles crush their competition, generating a return on equity of 10.1% per year vs. 7.4% for those without.

In our recent Women in Leadership survey, our own members report landing exciting new positions, promotions and big business wins, citing Watermark as providing the inspiration and leadership development programs that help them get ahead in their careers.

And they proudly recognize their own companies – many are Watermark sponsors and Make Your Mark Award winners – as role models in diversity and inclusion.

On the flip side, the majority of our survey respondents believe it's still far easier for men to advance their careers than for women – and more than half are survivors of sexual harassment. Of those who reported it, very few were satisfied with the outcome.

This is entirely unacceptable. Our voices, our stories and our commitment to women helping women are key to making a difference.

Three Steps Forward You Can Take Today
At Watermark, we take great pride in offering you the opportunity to:

1. Grow and nurture your network.
We host more than 60 networking and professional development events every year. We've connected thousands of women (and men!) with the proper resources to grow their careers and break glass ceilings. If you're not yet a Watermark member, now's a great time to join. We're offering a six-month trial membership – sign up this week and enjoy the full benefits of the Watermark community.

2. Invest in yourself. Tap into our partnership with Athena Alliance if you're ready to serve on a board. And take advantage of our partnership with BetterUp and receive personalized professional development coaching to help you realize your potential. You'll be paired with a certified coach and resources for one year, including:

• Self assessment using BetterUp's Whole Person Model

• Weekly sessions with a professional coach

• Unlimited messaging with your coach

• Activities and microlearning hand selected for you by your coach

• Reflection point assessments to measure your progress

3. Celebrate your role models. Nominations are open for our Make Your Mark Awards, our annual celebration of the Bay Area's organizations and leaders most supportive of women in leadership. Nominate your company, men who champion women – and the women leaders you most admire. This year's event is set for Thursday, Nov. 15, at the Santa Clara Marriott. Stay tuned for details.

25 Years of Women (and Men) Making Their Mark
Ever since Denise Brosseau and Jennifer Gill Roberts founded Watermark 25 years ago, our commitment to helping women reach our full potential has never wavered.

We have you, we hear you, we support you.

And we invite you to join us as we continue to make the world better for working women everywhere.

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