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On Personal Branding, Being Authentic, and Avoiding Irrelevancy

I’m speaking to a select group of rising star business women. In mid-sentence, I pause to pull off my suddenly too-warm jacket as I smile and murmur “hot flash”. At the end of my talk, the marketing VP of a major credit card company approaches. “You’re so authentic,” she exclaims. “That really works for your […]

Frances McDormand and my Oscar fantasy: the Unvarnished Truth of Women’s Faces

When Frances McDormand accepted her Golden Globe in January, her dramatic performance in Three Billboards Outside of Ebbing, Missouri wasn’t the only thing that made her stand out. At a Hollywood party populated by women poured into form-fitting dresses, precariously balancing on pain-inducing stilettos, and sporting elaborate make-up, her comfortable clothing and relative lack of […]

Unconscious Bias and the Right to Bare Arms

Recently I shared the link to a blog post written by a writer whose insights I have often found relevant, useful and supported by research. My 200-character comment suggested that speakers who wanted to be taken seriously should cover up their arms. A minor storm ensued. I regret my failure to review the original study […]

Words Matter: Canada’s anthem finally acknowledges that half our citizens aren’t captured by the term “men”

Eight years ago, I penned the following op ed for the Ottawa Citizen on the occasion of the previous government’s brief flirtation with changing the lyrics of O Canada to include women. I am thrilled that the Senate today passed the bill the House of Commons originally approved in 2016. Thank you Nancy Ruth, Vivienne Poy and […]

5 Resolutions to maintain 2017’s momentum

If 2017 goes down in history as a year of resolve, what will we say about 2018? That we built on the momentum to make lasting change, or that we let the energy dissipate into nothingness? From women’s marches around the world to the #MeToo movement, many people took not just to social media, but […]

What Gets Measured Gets Done campaign puts media on notice, aims to bridge gender gap in Canadian news media by 2025

October 18, Ottawa – In recognition of Persons Day, Informed Opinions launched “What Gets Measured Gets Done”, a national campaign aimed at bridging the gender gap in news and information media. At the official launch, Informed Opinions Catalyst and Founder, Shari Graydon issued a challenge to journalists across Canada. The non-profit project will monitor the […]

Brad Pitt’s 3-step program for #MaleAllies

  Among the many feelings (fury, disgust, resignation) that surfaced for me upon learning the extent to which casting couch hell remains alive and well, was this thought: There are a lot of decent men in the world capable of doing what Brad Pitt did when he learned of the encounter his then girlfriend, Gwyneth […]

What Gets Measured Gets Done – #WGMGD

This conversation should be over: The business case for drawing on the entire talent pool is now unassailable — dozens of studies over more than two decades make clear that including women’s informed opinions makes companies more profitable, boards more effective, and research more relevant. Most people no longer accept the absence of women’s insights […]

Two unexpected performance lessons and the power of the mic

The Québécoise singer-songwriter on stage at the beautifully renovated National Arts Centre is charming and talented. But she’s also distracted. The connection between her plugged-in guitar and the amp is not working. In the audience, we can hear her lovely vocals, and the music being played by her band, but not her own strumming. If […]

Critical feedback is one key to success

“Great lectures, bad hair.” Clearly, I’m no Einstein, but in the fight for my most memorable student evaluation as a university communications instructor, that comment from 1992 runs neck and neck with this one from 1998: “Puncuashun, and speling, to strick.” Translated, this means “Punctuation and spelling too strict.” (Which, I’m pretty sure, totally redeems […]