What To Do When They Want You To Shut Up

By Sallie Krawcheck

Let’s talk about talking.

Specifically, women talking — and why we still need a pass to do so.

There are plenty of headlines on the subject: who’s being shushed (Kamala Harris, Elizabeth Warren) and who’s being talked over with sexist jokes (Arianna Huffington).

There’s also a lot of *helpful* advice on how to navigate this: recently an all-male PR panel advised us women to just talk louder. Hmmmm…I’m going to go out on a limb and say that’s not a great solution.

Bottom line: I can’t tell you how many hours of my life I’ve spent (i.e. wasted) thinking through how to be heard in mostly male settings. I’ve even written about how I did — and didn’t — do it.

More important bottom line: our voices are powerful.

Case in point is Susan J. Fowler. It was pretty well known that Uber was a hyper-masculine, hyper-competitive culture before she wrote about it. But it was her story about working there — her voice — that busted the whole thing wide open…and is driving real change in that company and for its employees.

You know how we feel about women and power here at Ellevest. This back-and-forth over women’s voices is, at its core, all about power: who has it and how it is used.

One more note: I picked up a copy of Entrepreneur magazine in the Chicago airport last week…

And in it, Ellevest was named one of its “100 Brilliant Ideas.”

Cue confetti, cue parade, cue the use of the humblebrag hashtag.

As an entrepreneur, I have to stay pretty tough most of the time (after all, gotta get our voices heard out there), but this one got to me a little because I’m so proud of the Ellevest team. I don’t think any of us knew how tough a task we set for ourselves when we started the company, but the team does it because they are absolutely fired up about helping you close your personal investing gap.

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