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#GirlsClub Rise Up Conference | Women in Sales | Female Leadership
#GirlsClub Rise Up 2019 Highlights

Last week, #GirlsClub hosted its first conference, Rise Up 2019. It was ah-maz-ing! So amazing that there were many attendees who found it hard to put into words the impact this conference had on them. That includes us.

We spent two days being surrounded by incredible women sharing their stories and experiences. And we’re grateful for the men who joined Rise Up to share their expertise and to give their support in leveling the playing field. It was an intimate gathering (we cap it at 100 attendees) full of brave, vulnerable moments and tactical advice for sales leaders. Everyone left Rise Up feeling inspired, challenged, and ready to take their careers to the next level.

So, we wanted to share some of those sound bites of good advice given to us at Rise Up. If you’re having a serious case of FOMO, be sure to subscribe to our newsletter so you can be the first to know about our next conference.


Here are our top highlights:

Jill Konrath kicked off our two days. It was the first time many of us were able to hear her speak. She did not disappoint. She shared personal stories (and even a story that she’s never shared in public before – woah). Our favorite quote from Jill is, “You are not a failure. You just haven’t figured it out yet.”

Michelle Cirocco when she shared her story of strength over adversity. She climbed from an entry-level IC role at Televerde and is now the Chief Responsibility Officer. I’m not sure if there was a dry eye in the room. She is a role model for us all.
Angela Raub, CEO of Leadercast, shared her story and advice of zigzagging our way upward. Referring to herself as a “professional mutt” she shared how she has defied the “corporate ladder” idea of only moving upward within the same vertical . When she was laid off at her dream job where she had done “all the right things” to advance, she set out on a path to find her next job and treated it like a sales pipeline. As a result, she secured 144 interviews in 12 weeks and landed 3 incredible opportunities. Through her trials and ups and downs, she shared that “the greatest lesson you can learn is to ask for help”. How many of us needs to put that on repeat?

The She Suite might have been one of the favorites for everyone. Anna Baird, COO at, Rakhi Voria, Director of Global Digital Sales at IBM, and Judy Buchholz, General Manager at IBM, shared their career advice and gave us a peek behind what’s it’s like at their level. Here are our favorite quotes from each of them.

Anna Baird: “Learn the business not just your job.”
Rakhi Voria: “Build your network by seeking to learn.”
Judy Buchholz: “Fail fast. If you are not failing you are not learning.”

Anna also shared, “When you have a team that you trust and they trust you, there’s nothing you and your team can’t accomplish.”

Rakhi also shared with us that what leaders look for most is a consistent track record. Your background is less important. That’s important to let that sink in when we know that women apply for jobs when they feel they check 100% of the boxes whereas men will apply when they feel they check just 60% of the boxes. Another tip that she gave was to “articulate your value in meetings by sharing why you’ve been invited and what expertise you bring.” For example, you can say, “I think I’ve been invited to this meeting because of my knowledge in XYZ and here is what I suggest.”

Roy Raanani, CEO of Chorus, shared some stats with us that had our mouths dropped to the floor. Here’s just one: 60% of reps will leave an organization if their manager is a poor coach and yet 47% of managers spend just 30 minutes a week coaching reps. Yikes. Roy also shared that, “Managers have the most impact when they spend time coaching early stage deals”. Keep an eye out for a follow up post where we’ll share more stats from his presentation.

Christin Myers shared her story of how she learned the impact of bringing our whole, authentic selves to work. It wasn’t until she stepped out of fear and into vulnerability proudly wearing her “single mom” badge that she was able to connect with her team and lead them to success. Christin says, “I was able to show up as a young mom who’d worked her ass off and showed up to achieve more than I thought was possible. I am no longer afraid to share my setbacks or failures. This enabled me to build relationships like I’ve never been able to build in a professional environment before.” Catch the complete recording of her story here.

Kristina McMillan, VP of Research at TOPO, shared SO many tips on developing executive presence. Here are some indicators of someone who has executive presence:

  • You’re able to take control of difficult and unpredictable situations
  • You can make tough decisions in a timely manner
  • You hold your own with other talented and strong people

She also shared to tactics for running a successful meeting:

  • Use good ol’ old school agendas
  • Do you present yourself as a mature professional? Body language, attire, concise communication, etc.
  • Are you careful to use their time wisely?
  • Always send recap emails

Shari Levitin closed up our two days together. She brought the house down as she shared her story of how she learned that relentless tenacity is the key to success. She talked about the importance of forcing optimism into our lives and making it a part of how we operate. Shari says, “Better people make better sales people and leaders.”

I wish we could highlight every single presenter in this blog. The amount of valuable information presented at this conference was epic. We are so proud to hear from so many attendees that Rise Up by far was the most impactful conference they’ve been to. That was our goal and thrilled that we were able to deliver on it.

If you want to be the first to know when our next conference is, be sure to follow us on Instagram at _wearegirlsclub, follow our President and Founder, Lauren Bailey on LinkedIn, and subscribe to our emails to get updates and announcements. If you’re an aspiring sales leader or show high potential for sales management, #GirlsClub is the place for you. Our next sales management training program kicks off on September 10th. Learn more about the program and apply to the program here.

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