Talk, Listen, and Laugh – Essential Ingredients for Women (with Cox FORGE)

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On today’s episode, we’re joined by a group of women who have learned the power of sisterhood in career. Through personal development, overcoming ego and fear, and integrating passion into their day to day life, these women have grown to cherish the powerful bonds between strong women who lift one another up rather than cut one another down through competition and cattiness. Today, they’ll teach us what they’ve learned on their way. 

More about today’s guests:
Ashley Hill:

Ashley Hill manages the Supplier Diversity and Risk Management programs at Cox Automotive.  She’s been at Cox for 9 years in various finance roles including the FORGE rotational program.  Prior to Cox, Ashley worked at Cisco Systems and Cbeyond. Ashley received a Bachelor’s degree from Georgia Tech in Business Management with concentrations in Finance and Operations Management.  Growing up as a military brat and traveling the world, Ashley developed the skill of adaptation and a love of diverse foods.

Lainey Sibble

Lainey started her career at KPMP in the Real Estate Audit practice.  Upon realizing she wanted to redirect her focus within business, Lainey returned to graduate school and earned an MBA from Columbia Business School.  Since Columbia, Lainey has found her passion in strategy. She spent two years working in strategic finance roles at Unilever, and then joined Cox where she has worked across the different divisions.  She started in a financial investment strategy role at Cox Business, rotated across divisions and functional groups through a leadership development program, and ultimately found a strategic planning director role at Cox Automotive, where she works today.

Julie Meier

Julie joined Cox Enterprises in 2013 after beginning her career in public accounting, and has since held roles in Audit, FP&A, Strategy, International Finance, and Business Operations. In her current role, she helps Cox’s Sales and Marketing teams understand the impacts of proposed changes on financial statements and customer relationships. Julie enjoys supporting her alma mater, Notre Dame, by serving on the alumni board as well as volunteering around Atlanta with the Special Olympics, Habitat for Humanity, and Ronald McDonald House. 

Lauren Kicklighter

Lauren Kicklighter is a team-oriented and dedicated individual that enjoys driving results. She also enjoys an environment in which she can learn and grow and coach others to do the same. Experienced in managing projects, she learns quickly and is enthusiastic about adopting best practices and procedures. Her goal is to improve the efficiency and quality of business operations through utilizing data-driven metrics. With strong executive presence, Lauren builds relationships quickly as well as effectively communicate sound strategic recommendations. 

Kristi Roche

Kristi Roche is a Director of Audit Services at Cox Enterprises, Inc. with 10+ years of experience across a variety of finance disciplines.  She joined Cox in 2014 as part of the Cox Automotive Strategy team before joining the leadership program in 2017. Prior to Cox, Kristi worked in finance and strategy roles for Carter’s, Accenture and Protiviti.  She’s an avid Georgia Bulldogs fan after earning both her BBA and MBA from the University of Georgia.

Show Highlights

  • What sorts of issues cause trepidation about joining groups of other women in a career setting? Do issues like catfights and competitiveness often cause problems? Are these traits of strong women?
  • How did these women find their own rules and cadence for the group? What role did personality tests play from the beginning on? 
  • How did a sorority approach (vs. a competitive approach) build vulnerability, bonding, and the ability for the women to help one another?
  • What types of stress behaviors came out when the women had to do their bi-yearly reports to top leaders from various companies? Why was this their least favorite part of the program? How did having support from other women help?
  • What things were important to the bonding of the women in the group? What role did shared life experiences and rope courses play in creating the sisterhood?
  • How does personal development (vs. work skills) assist in careers at the early stage and the leadership stage? What did they learn about how to build a team (and how not to)?
  • How did the timing of this program affect women differently? What major life events occurred during the program? What discoveries did this result in as far as choosing a path forward, regardless of what was happening in life?
  • What archetypal roles did the women play in the group and what difference did these combinations make to the team? How do you integrate your passion into day to day life when it isn’t an integral part of your day job? Satisfaction emerges from finding opportunities to add your passion to your role.

Like what you hear? Hear more episodes like this on the What’s Your Story podcast page!

Building Collaboration and Inspiration in Marketing with Sarah Stansberry

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On today’s episode, we’re speaking with Sarah Stansberry about how to take a disparate panel of marketing experts and integrate them into a cohesive team with common goals. Sarah discusses her seven tips for leaders to help guide teams through the use of shared principles and methods to open engagement and conversation. Sarah’s insight into storytelling expresses how the simple act of telling a story changes both the listener and the speaker alike. 

More About Sarah Stansberry

Sarah Stansberry was named Interim Chief Marketing Officer of Equifax in March, 2019 and brings strong expertise in general management, digital marketing strategies, global demand generation, product marketing, public relations and brand activation across web, social and search channels.  As the Interim CMO, Sarah champions corporate marketing as the catalyst for Equifax growth focused on strengthening stakeholder engagement, demonstrating market leadership and optimizing marketing effectiveness globally. 

Sarah joined Equifax in 2013 and has held numerous marketing leadership positions of increasing responsibility, most recently as the SVP, Solutions Marketing and SVP, Marketing Operations where she and her teams focused on creating and activating customer-centric marketing strategies across the Equifax enterprise. During her tenure, Sarah has led lead product marketing, digital strategy and web experiences, product and solutions sales training and marketing operations teams.

Her focus on aligning people, process, tools and team dynamics helps change marketing organizations from reactive, sales support teams to true business partners that enable business growth through delivery of integrated marketing strategies.

Previously, Sarah held other marketing leadership roles including VP Marketing for LexisNexis Risk Solutions and SVP Marketing for AccuData Integrated Marketing.   She has also served in a number of marketing positions for start-up and large enterprises such as Click Commerce, RR Donnelley & Sons and PLATINUM Technology. 

Sarah was recently recognized as the 2018 Marketing Executive of the Year by the Technology Association of Georgia.  She holds a degree in Marketing from Loyola University, and an MBA in Strategic Management from DePaul University.  

Show Highlights

  • Specialized teams vs. a general focus on marketing: how do you solve the challenge of bringing together subject matter experts to generate broad insights and effective teams?
  • How do themes and stories play a role in helping people do self-checks? How can this help with guiding principles of a company in order to keep disparate teams on the same page?
  • Educate, enable, empower. For example, you shouldn’t create from scratch if you don’t have to. Utilize templates to help generate common work such as go to market plans. How does this three word concept help with team cohesion and trust? 
  • The Tiny Book of Teamwork… What is this guide about? How did this guide come about? What are the green boxes of love, and how do they set expectations among teams?
  • Many Ways for Many Brains… How do people consume content differently? Why is it important for marketers to keep this in mind? Plus, other segments of the book and what they mean to the modern marketing team.
  • Check Yourself… Why it’s important not to be a jerk. Negativity in the workplace is each individual’s responsibility.
  • One of the responsibilities of leadership is developing future leaders. Sarah discusses the ways her seven tips help foster this mindset, even subconsciously, allowing leaders to be more thoughtful and get more engagement from their teams by providing a way and framing to have a conversation. 
  • Sarah discusses stories and storytelling and their impact on both listeners and the communicator themselves. 

Like what you hear? Hear more episodes like this on the What’s Your Story podcast page!