Stereotypes are everywhere – you’ve probably heard people say “boys are rough,” “girls are delicate,” “men are aggressive,” or “women are caregivers.” What’s concerning is that people can let these perceptions become reality, defining who they are. Research suggests that girls as young as six years old believe a stereotype about women not being as smart as men. That kind of misperception can carry through a person’s life, and it can limit personal and professional potential. Here’s a few of our favorite stories about women who are shattering stereotypes in their personal and professional lives. From artists to engineers, women who have forged their own path inspire us and women everywhere to accomplish whatever we dream of being.
Alma Derricks, Chief Marketing Officer at El Rey Network, did it all- from working with United Media, Paramount, the LA Times, all the way to HBO and Cirque du Soleil. While referring to herself as an “intrapreneur,” Alma’s compass to success is to build natural brand extensions and get people to say “yes” to new ideas and experiences. Read about Alma’s experiences with not only her “yeses” but also how it is to be a woman in her role.
A road trip from New York to California was more than just a scenic drive for Adobe’s EVP & Chief Marketing Officer, Ann Lewnes, but an adventure that brought opportunity and change. Starting at Intel, Ann dove into the tech industry and blossomed, guiding her to success and eventually leading her to her transition to Adobe. Read about Ann’s experience as Adobe CMO and her advice to other women who are looking to shatter stereotypes.
Growing up as a self-proclaimed math nerd and trained as an accountant, Adobe’s Senior Vice President & Chief Information Officer, Cynthia Stoddard knew she liked numbers, but never expected to be intrigued by ‘data processing’ and the power of technology to improve efficiency and business practices. After 25 years in IT, Cynthia held several positions all the way from programmer trainee to head of IT. Read about Cynthia’s insights for growing a career and rising above stereotypes.
Executive Vice President of Customer & Employee Experience at Adobe, Donna Morris, has shattered stereotypes about the role HR can play in driving business transformation, as well as reinventing herself to inspire others. After working at different companies, she discovered how much HR can move the needle and have a bottom-line impact on the business. She’s some big moves that have really disrupted how work is traditionally done — like eliminating annual performance reviews and dramatically expanding family leave. Read about Donna’s experience and her advice in advancing in the workplace.
Bec Brideson, a consultant on the female economy, has always been passionate about the creative side of advertising and marketing, but noticed the lack of women in the field. With courage and commitment, she decided to create an agency, Venus Comms, as Australia’s first agency specializing in the female audience. Read about her career path and her call to action for other women.
Starting off at Cosmopolitan, Advertising Creative Director and Keynote Speaker, Kat Gordon had the opportunity to release her creativity and let it drive her through her success. After becoming an advertising copywriter, Kat got into the agency business, first working for big agencies and then starting her own. Throughout her experiences, she noticed the lack of diversity in her field and became a social change entrepreneur where she started the 3% Conference. Read about Kat’s career path and her advice to dream big.