Get It Girl: The 2nd Annual Hawaii Island Women’s Leadership Forum

Hawaii Island Women's Leadership Forum

On Friday, I attended the 2nd annual Hawaii Island Women’s Leadership Forum at the Hilton Waikoloa Village. I signed up with the intention of networking with other female entrepreneurs on the island, and thought maybe I’d learn a little something. I knew going into it that it was going to be a fantastic day — but I had absolutely no idea it would wind up being one of the most inspiring and empowering days of my 3 years on the Big Island.

I spent the day trying to choose between workshops that would be beneficial to my life and career in one way or another; so when it boiled down to it, it was crucial that I chose the one in each session that I thought would provide the most value. Which is incredibly difficult to do when you have to choose between things like, “Conscious Communication: How to Engage in Thoughtful Expression and Active Listening” and “Modern Woman’s Social Media Guide to Building and Enhancing One’s Brand” or “Women and Philanthropy” and “‘Give it to me – I’m Worth it’ Salary Negotiation.”

If I could, I would’ve gladly attended them all. 

Many times, I found myself frantically flipping to the next page on my legal pad, and eventually taking photos of the Powerpoints when I just couldn’t write fast enough. I was hoping for one or two strong lessons from the day that would really impact my life or business, but I wound up with pages of insightful advice and guidance from women of all ages and industries.

Here are just a few key takeaways:

The power of sponsorship is undeniable. A sponsor has the power to push, pull and promote you where and when it counts, and provides a competitive career advantage at all levels of your work. – The Sponsorship Effect: Pushing, Pulling & Promoting You, Keynote Speaker Teri Bump

Executive presence is a combination of three elements: what you say, what you do, and how you show up. While these elements are not equal, they are essential in the development of an effective leader. – Executive Presence and the Fast Track, Keynote Speaker Teri Bump

Playing to your strengths is the key to rising above the ordinary. – What’s the Spinach? Lucy Jones

Instead of making a to do list, sometimes it’s just as beneficial to make a list of things you’ve already accomplished, or even make a list of things you just don’t want to do anymore. – What’s the Spinach? Lucy Jones

Acknowledge your mistakes, but move on. Understand where growth comes from. – Power of Health, Power of You; Katie Moore

Compliments are a gift. Accept them graciously, and then pay it forward. – Power of Health, Power of You; Katie Moore

The word negotiation is commonly associated with something negative. However, the word negotiation describes any communication process between individuals that is intended to reach a compromise or agreement to the satisfaction of both parties. – “Give it to me – I’m Worth it” Salary Negotiation, Sulma Gandhi and Teri Bump

Everything we do requires negotiation. When you understand your value and your values you can effectively advocate and position yourself at work and in life. – “Give it to me – I’m Worth it” Salary Negotiation, Sulma Gandhi and Teri Bump

Women ask for 30% less than men on a negotiation table. (!!!!!!) – “Give it to me – I’m Worth it” Salary Negotiation, Sulma Gandhi and Teri Bump

But not only did I learn from some incredible leaders, I also danced with over 50 strangers before noon. I got goosebumps on more than one occasion, and may have even teared up at one point. I saw early morning smiles turn into afternoon handshakes, turn into pau hana hugs. I saw wheels turning and light bulbs going off. I felt the energy of 350 women on fire, ready to get what they want and deserve with the support of each other. 

I’m still buzzing off this incredible day, and want to thank everyone who had a role in putting on such a successful event for our island. If you’re on the Big Island, I highly encourage you to keep tabs on this event for next year. Until then…

let ‘ s Get it girls. 

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