33 episodes

A Seat at the Table is a podcast for business professionals advancing to executive and enterprise levels of leadership, brought to you by Leading Women Executives. Episodes will discuss lessons in leadership and explore business strategies for success.

A Seat at the Table Leading Women Executives

    • Business
    • 5.0 • 5 Ratings

A Seat at the Table is a podcast for business professionals advancing to executive and enterprise levels of leadership, brought to you by Leading Women Executives. Episodes will discuss lessons in leadership and explore business strategies for success.

    Leading in a Legacy: Insights from Kohler’s Chief Sustainable Living Officer

    Leading in a Legacy: Insights from Kohler’s Chief Sustainable Living Officer

    This episode features Laura Kohler, Chief Sustainable Living Officer, Kohler. Laura shares insights about the legacy of Kohler and her journey within the company, and Kohler’s culture of innovation, sustainability and purpose. Laura also discusses the importance of re-skilling, the role of technology in sustainability, and how her personal values have played a role in her leadership journey.
    SHOW NOTES:
    1:51: Kohler's Legacy Values: Resilience, Persistence and Innovation
    6:49: What started as cast iron farm implements
    11:20: The importance of sustainability and DEI as cultural competencies and behaviors
    16:33: Innovation and Purpose: People are more than the job they do
    20:07: Dealing with roadblocks when building a culture of innovation
    22:05: Smart products to serve sustainable living
    24:41: The importance of reskilling and a 70-20-10 model
    29:48: The thrill and challenge of career pivots
    DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:
    We encourage you to connect with your peer board, team or colleagues to discuss the podcast. Please use the following questions to guide your conversation:
     
    If you were to further cultivate your own resilience, persistence, and innovation, how might that serve you well in your ongoing leadership journey?
    What opportunities might exist to further cultivate sustainability and DEI as cultural competencies and individual behaviors in your own organization?
    Are you leaving money and talent on the table by not fully activating your own team members? What might you do to better activate them?
    What could you do to foster a culture of innovation in your team and how might you be able to influence that more broadly in your organization?
    What skills and competencies of your own do you need to update, and what is your plan to do so?
     

    • 37 min
    Leading the Charge: Leadership Insights from the Energy Industry

    Leading the Charge: Leadership Insights from the Energy Industry

    This episode features Jennifer Montague, President and Chief Operating Officer for Columbia Gas of Virginia. Montague is also a Leading Women Executives Fellow, Fall 2018. Jennifer provides insights about innovation in the energy industry and delivers advice and experience about growing as a leader through taking on P&L roles, smartly planning for technology and people, advantages to working overseas, and creating smart plans for work-life balance. 
    SHOW NOTES:
    The importance of P&L experience in carving a pathway to leadership [4:39]
    Excitement and opportunity in the energy industry [6:21]
    Building an AI strategy board: digital transformation and preparing for the future [8:35]
    The importance of not losing critical thinking [10:43]
    Intentional plans for future leaders [11:57]
    The benefits of working overseas [14:00]
    Different ways of balancing work and life [15:37]
    Managing your derailers and growing as a leader [19:01]
    Closed mouths don’t get fed (ask for what you want) [22:05]
    Discussion Questions
    We encourage you to connect with your peer board, team or colleagues to discuss the podcast. Please use the following questions to guide your conversation:
    How is your organization collectively thinking about, learning about, and working to understand the implications of AI?
    As you and your team start to leverage AI tools, what are you doing to also continue cultivating the important skill of critical thinking in yourself and within your team?
    How are you and your organization creating intentional pathways to train and prepare future leaders?
    What strategies can you share with others about managing derailers when the pressure is on?
     

    • 27 min
    Harvesting Insights: A look at technology and leadership in precision agriculture

    Harvesting Insights: A look at technology and leadership in precision agriculture

    This episode features Deanna Kovar, President, Worldwide Agriculture & Turf Division: Small Agriculture & Turf Care, Europe, Africa, and Asia, Deere & Company. Kovar is also a Leading Women Executives Fellow, Spring 2017. This conversation explores the history and evolution of technology and innovation in Deere and Company and shares insights into precision agriculture and how it impacts all of us. Kovar also shares meaningful leadership lessons learned and the necessary adjustments on how to better lead in our rapidly changing world of technology. 
    SHOW NOTES: 
    About precision agriculture [10:34] 
    Autonomous tractors and leveraging technology [14:42] 
    Innovation at the core of Deere and Company [20:14] 
    Leading with tech-savvy innovation [26:15] 
    Data skills necessary in leadership [29:25] 
    Being intentional in building your network [37:40] 
    Learning not failing [40:26] 
    Discussion Questions 
    We encourage you to connect with your peer board, team or colleagues to discuss the podcast. Please use the following questions to guide your conversation: 
     How are you taking steps to grow your leadership capabilities through understanding technology? 
    What is something you'd like to do differently at your organization in how you use data to make leadership decisions or recommendations? 
    When is a moment where a seeming failure turned into an important opportunity? 
    What is an example where you might adjust how you ask the questions rather than provide the answer to your teams? 
    What is a priority in how you would like to grow your own network this year? 

     

    • 47 min
    Leading With Purpose

    Leading With Purpose

    In this episode, Kelly Tufts, Vice President, Field Talent at Discover and Leading Women Executives Fellow, Spring 2015, discusses her focus on finding meaningful and impactful ways to lead with purpose. In her role at Discover, Kelly has been integrally involved in the opening of a new contact center in Chatham, a disinvested neighborhood in Chicago. Through this work and other civic roles, Kelly is able to help employees, customers and community members thrive, as well as chart her personal growth as a leader. Kelly also shares how adopting a growth mindset has empowered her to serve as a customer champion, lifelong learner and collaborative connector.
     
    Discussion Questions
     
    We encourage you to connect with your peer board, team or colleagues to discuss the podcast. Please use the following questions to guide your conversation:
    Questions:
    1.     How does your organization lead with purpose?
    2.     Where might opportunities exist for your organization to take a hyper-local approach and impact local businesses?
    3.     What can you get involved with to help you foster a growth mindset?
     
    Highlights:
    How Discover Leads with Purpose [4:59]
    Finding Success by Taking a Hyper-Local Approach [9:40]
    Leadership Requires a Growth Mindset [11:35]
    Empowering Women through PayTech Women [14:06]
    Being a Curious, Lifelong Learner [16:46]

    • 20 min
    Chicago to Qatar to Cannes… Where Creativity Meets Leadership

    Chicago to Qatar to Cannes… Where Creativity Meets Leadership

    In this episode, Jennifer DelVecchio, Senior Director Global Content and Culture at McDonald’s (Leading Women Executives Fellow, Fall 2022), shares her leadership journey, that has allowed her to travel the world while tackling unique and challenging growth opportunities. Throughout these experiences, Jennifer has fostered and developed her creativity as a way to approach new challenges, solve complex problems, and find new ways to connect with others.
     
    Discussion Questions
     
    We encourage you to connect with your peer board, team or colleagues to discuss the podcast. Please use the following questions to guide your conversation:
    1.     How might the changing nature of communities impact the future of your organization's business and brand?
    2.     Where are opportunities for you to both lead in the moment and also remind your team to be in the moment and not miss the moment?
    3.     How have other leaders effectively built followership for the mission they are responsible for pursuing? 
    4.     How do you spend your time as a leader? Are there ways to change how you spend your time that would make you a more effective leader?
    5.     What routines have you seen other leaders use to elevate their leadership impact? Are there routines that you could adopt that would elevate your leadership impact?
    6.     What non-negotiables do you need to set for yourself?
     
    HIGHLIGHTS:
    Meeting the Moment and Not Missing the Moment [7:39]
    A See and Seize Leadership Style [9:50]
    The Power of Routines [11:19]
    Utilizing the Language of Leadership [15:20]
    Where to Spend Your Time as a Leader [20:16]
    ROI Can Mean ‘Return on Inspiration’ [22:12]
    Using the FOAM Method to Craft a Compelling Story [23:48]
    Tapping into Your Creativity [27:42]

    • 34 min
    Secrets for Success: Tips for Dual-Career Families

    Secrets for Success: Tips for Dual-Career Families

    In this episode, Ilene Gordon, former CEO & Chairman of Ingredion, and her husband, Bram Bluestein, former management consultant, share their advice and successful strategies for dual-career families. Juggling family, relationships and work responsibilities is not an easy task, but over the course of their 40+ years of marriage, Ilene and Bram learned how to balance their robust careers while employing creative methods to stay connected and engaged as a family. The priorities and insights that they share in this episode expand upon concepts from their recent book, Doubling Down: The Secret Sauce for Dual-Career Families.
     
    Discussion Questions
     
    We encourage you to connect with your peer board, team or colleagues to discuss the podcast. Please use the following questions to guide your conversation:
     
    1.   What are your non-negotiables around family and work?
    2.   What trade-offs have you made in order to maintain those non-negotiables?
    3.   Do you have rituals -- like Ilene's and Bram's Sunday-night dinners -- that you have put in place to help you stay organized as a family?
    4.   How do you or other leaders in your organization model work-life balance?
     
     
    HIGHLIGHTS:
    First Encounters: 5:38
    Issues Facing Dual-Career Couples: 8:03
    Finding Your Non-Negotiables: 12:06
    Modeling the Behavior as Leaders: 16:30
    Making Inevitable Trade-Offs: 21:15
    Being Inventive to Make it All Work: 23:19

    • 28 min

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