This is #OurTime

One of the best parts of the week after Generation W, at least for me, is regaining the ability to SLEEP. You know how it is when your endorphins are flying, and your cortisol is raging? SLEEP, as they tell us, is a vital activity and it has been sweetened all the more with the amazing feedback that we have been receiving from so many who attended Generation W. There are many things that stand out for me: the appreciation and recognition for the diversity that makes up the W community, the many stories shared of personal transformation, and the collegiality of so many professional colleagues who came thanks to companies understanding that this very special team experience is one that is a difference maker for employees and employers.

Each year we are graced by incredible speakers. They come with such generous spirits. They are experts, passionate about contributing, and by the time they leave they have built a bridge to this W community (with attendees from over 25 states), and a real appreciation of Jacksonville. Their experience here is telling – as they share:

“We each matter. I was reminded of this by each woman and man who stopped me at Generation W to say she/he was touched by my story. You each touched me too.”—Lisa Maxwell, Vice President Product Marketing, Mastercard

“It was such a gift to present and be with the GENW community. Their energy and enthusiasm were contagious. But most I was struck by the incredibly supportive environment that was created. What a delight.” —Maryam Banikarim, Global Chief Marketing Officer, Hyatt Hotels

“What an amazing experience!”–Wendy Borlabi, Performance Coach, Chicago Bulls

“Generation W, made me feel so connected to others, all the women I met fighting different fights around the country. Generation W reminded us that we all deserve to celebrate the women, mothers, sisters, daughters, and teachers in our life.”–Basma Alawee, Florida Refugee Organizer, Florida Immigrant Coalition

As we say “thank you” for all those who put an exclamation point on this year’s Generation W, we want to emphasize, that this annual destination, this inspirational and motivational refueling station, allows for us to reimagine and refocus. But the work and the effort does not begin and end here. And so this is a call out to all who have told us that there is much to do. We are with you. W’s mission is to elevate voices and opportunities for women and girls and in that process elevate ALL of us who know in our bones that there is a greater good that only happens when we are all included!. This is the backbone of community building!.

This past year we have learned just how important it is not only for our stories to be shared but for our faces to be recognized. In just one year, we have moved from #MeToo to #TimesUp and now #OurTime.

Yes, #OurTime.

As our voices as women are being increasingly heard, we need to continue to advocate for others, but also we need to do what we can do better, and that is to advocate for ourselves. It is #OurTime to be bold, to be brave and to shift the paradigm that will yield the positivity that unleashes talent, resources, and our and others better angels. As I said in my opening remarks, the need to come together is a priority now more than ever. To make a difference is to look beyond differences and to know that different does not equal divided.

#OurTime.

Lots more to come on this as we want to explore how we continue and expand this conversation to create what #OurTime looks like for you, all of US, and how we make it happen!

THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!

We are ALL Generation W,

 

 

 

Donna
@DonnaOrender