Tell us about a time you were fearless.
In 2019, I took a leap of faith to leave the Des Moines job market as well as my marketing career to pursue a position in product management. After earning my MBA from the University of Iowa in 2018, I knew that I desired a challenge to exercise my business skills. It was a move of faith, determination and fearlessness to pursue a brand-new career focus in a new market while still living in the Des Moines metro. Long-term I learned how to lean into my strengths while pushing through the hard times to come out stronger on the other side. The leap of faith was well worth it, and I am back in the Des Moines market working in corporate communications – exactly where I am supposed to be after fearlessly leaping into a new opportunity.
How have you found confidence? How can we help others be confident?
Confidence comes from within – from believing in yourself and knowing that you are worthy. I grew up in a home that instilled confidence in me from a young age. I also grew up on a farm, which taught me the value of hard work and confidence to do any chores just like my brothers and father. I grew up without the concept of limits or boundaries. I was encouraged to embrace my skills and strengths, to try new things and to excel in whatever my heart desired.
To help others be confident, it’s important to dig inside yourself and recognize your value. You are worthy, and when you embrace who you are and your unique value you bring to the world, confidence tends to naturally follow.
What does it mean to be a leader? What can leaders do to focus on women’s and gender issues?
To be a leader means to selflessly lead from the front while elevating those around you to be the best version of themselves. Learning from other leaders, I have embraced the concept of servant leadership, as it brings out the strengths of your team members and makes everyone better. When you push and challenge those around you, in turn, you become better and learn along the way.
What does it mean to take a risk? What’s a time you took a personal risk?
To take a risk means to go headfirst into something without looking back until it’s completed or experienced. In 2018, I took a personal risk by planning a trip and traveling to Thailand for a week. Many people in the cities I spent time in didn’t speak any English, so I quickly learned to use Google Translate, as well as use signs and facial expressions to communicate. It’s amazing how you can figure things out when you really have to. I navigated my way around the country and three different cities in a week and learned so much about myself and my ability to immerse myself in a different culture.