Make a Friend, Make an Ask, Make a Promise

By Sarah Fay, Managing Director, Glasswing Ventures

Valued CEO Coach and professional Board Director, Emily Green held a gathering this week (supported by SVB, KBB Capital, Pillar and Glasswing Ventures) bringing together some 60 highly accomplished women. In addition to the lively conversation, good food and wine, there was an overwhelming feeling of camaraderie and support.

At this time last year, I wrote that women should take a page from the good ole boys’ handbook and make time to network more with each other. That has happened in Boston over the course of the year, resulting in a tighter business community of women who can call on each other when needed.

Emily addressed the group, recalling her early career, when she kept her head down, working very hard… perhaps harder than needed, because she didn’t ask for help in enough instances, and didn’t spend enough time widening her network. She also regretted not helping others as much as she now realizes she could have.

Making up for lost time, her direction to the room was simple:

“Make a new friend, make an ask, and make a promise.”

To get the action started, Emily introduced the founders of two non-profits: Kate Gilbert, Executive Director of Now + There, an organization that funds public art exhibitions, and Elizabeth Hailer, Executive Director of the Commonwealth Institute, an organization dedicated to helping businesswomen achieve greater success. Judging from the escalating noise level following the presentations, the new connections, asks and promises were flowing.

The group included a mix of tenured execs joined by younger professionals and students, so our intention of lifting other women could be achieved. I received this email from Tara Ryan, Senior Manager at Brightcove, who attended: “All I can talk about with my friends and husband is how incredible the other night was, thank you SO much! I was able to meet dozens of smart and hardworking women and I’ve already set up additional meetings with a few of them.”

Mission accomplished Emily! Let’s keep the drumbeat of eventsand opportunities for women in our community to make connections and help each other.