If I were a fly on the wall to my own chat with Heather Odendaal (CEO and Founder of the WNORTH Conference), I would have a chuckle. See the picture right above this post? That is Heather and me (the author of this post) talking virtually about a virtual event which covers topics on how to work in a virtual world amidst COVID-19. That is a tongue twister, go on try saying that three times quickly.
The point is, our world is clearly facing a pretty scary collective experience and it’s impressive to see people like Heather rally and quickly adapt; something we have all had to do. Heather is an accomplished entrepreneur, a driven sales executive for a Fortune 500 company, an active community member, and founder of the WNORTH Conference. She started the conference in spring 2015 because she herself was not finding a leadership event that catered specifically towards mid-management level women who are on a path to senior executive positions.
“When I was at a mid-level position myself, I heard a lot of talk on the need to have more women in leadership positions but there were still few female CEO’s or women at the C-SUITE level. I searched for conferences and platforms that covered topics geared towards women in mid-management but couldn’t really find anything. When I became a CEO, it reaffirmed the need to support this transitional stage in women’s careers”. – Heather Odendaal, Founder WNORTH
Fast-forward to today and WNORTH has hosted several successful events, conferences and forums that have made a difference.
With the recent rapid rise of COVID-19, Heather had to be quick on her feet and adjust. The intent was to have their next event in person which is now slated to be in October 2020. In the meantime, Heather understood that times were changing and put together the aptly named “Pivot – Virtual Panel Series”. The event has a phenomenal line of speakers (Cisco, Indeed, Zoom, Amazon Web Services, AG Hair, PwC, Zoom, Unilever, and more). The series covers the following three key of top of mind subjects:
Wednesday, April 15, 2020: “Managing & Motivating Remote Teams “- (10AM PDT)/(1PM EST/6PM GMT)
Recent changes in our Global Health landscape have dramatically changed how we work and how we lead our teams. Learn how to navigate this new landscape.
Thursday, April 16, 2020: “From Crisis to Pivot – How These Organizations Shift Gears” – (10AM PDT)/(1PM EST/6PM GMT)
In this session, you will hear from two incredible women who have led their organizations through enormous change due to COVID-19.
Friday, April 17, 2020: “Leadership Lessons to Support Working Parents during COVID-19” – (10AM PDT)/(1PM EST/6PM GMT)
One month into homeschooling, working from home and balancing our lives during this pandemic, we speak with three diverse leaders about best practices for how we can navigate this new reality as parents.
When asked why these three topics, Heather suggested that she heard the call of what WNORTH members were experiencing on the ground. WNORTH’s decision to act fast on these subjects was in response to some real-life scenarios that were playing out across the board.
If you are interested, FREE REGISTRATION is now open to the public.
There is now a growing need for online events and training. WNORTH is also rolling out an online portal to keep the ball rolling on women’s empowerment topics and provide access to a wider global community through a virtual means.
WNORTH is a global community of women on the rise. Similarly, Lean In Canada is a community of professional women empowering each other to build purposeful and fulfilling careers.
In the last few months, words like “global” and “community” jump out of sentences with emphasis as to say “hey you, yeah you, we are all united and in this together”.
Let’s remember this when figuring out how to manage our work and daily lives virtually. This is new, this is change, and change can be scary. Take advantage of the tools and online events out there like Pivot to help you map out your unique footprint in this digital world and share what you have learned with everyone.
We will get through this together, virtually that is.
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