In 2013, C2G created its first affinity group for women and began to unite the women at C2G through monthly meetings, creative training, and inspiring speakers. This year, Elle@Legrand, a forum for all of the women at Legrand North America (C2G’s parent company) launched. Elle@Legrand is making strides in supporting gender equality in the workplace and is becoming a community of women in technology that supports the growth and professional realization of women.
Insights from Andrea McDermott, Elle@Legrand Executive Committee Member:
"Women are underrepresented at every level in the corporate pipeline. I think the assumption is that women have more to balance with work and family; however, studies have proven that it’s actually because women face greater barriers to advance and a steeper path to leadership. For starters, women appear to be less eager. One of the goals of connecting the women at C2G is to empower and excite each of us to dig in and take control of our careers. We’re warriors and ready to rise. Through these programs we hope to create possibilities for women to advance and the fearlessness to take on new roles, assignments, or projects.
In 2015, we took Improv training together to discover the power of “yes and” as a communication technique. This interactive and fun exercise helped us realize how we can accept the ideas of others as reality and build on them. Simply put, we learned how to be adaptable with confidence. Large companies such as Google, Pepsi, and MetLife have offered Improv training for their associates as a way to build comradery and self-assurance.
Throughout this year, we also studied mindfulness and learned how to balance the mental strain from work and our personal lives. Connecting with the breathe and stepping back for even just a mindful minute can improve focus, help you work with constructive criticism, improve relationships, and help you become a better peer and leader…and most importantly, release stress. On the heels of our mindfulness practice we started to dig into a session focused on reducing stress and increasing our personal effectiveness. The women at C2G learned stress reduction techniques, their personal style, and how they can apply behaviors to be successful.
By mid-year we were feeling pretty powerful so we shifted our focus from personal growth to professional career strategies. We learned how to apply new tactics to our communications and how to develop a leadership brand. To end the year we trained on how to network ahead in our career C2G.
I am excited to move into 2016 where we will be holding monthly sessions and narrowing in on topics such as centered leadership. Centered leadership will help the women at C2G lead with impact, resilience, and achieve fulfillment at work and outside of work. In an effort to unite all of the women across Legrand North America, Elle@Legrand will offer quarterly sessions for all of its members.
Our network is strengthening across the country. It’s been an awesome year of creating a space of trust, vulnerability, learning, and development with other courageous women at C2G. We look forward to impact that Elle@Legrand will have in 2016."
Women in The Workplace 2015 Study by McKindsey & Company for Lean IN