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CMB Spotlight: Judy Melanson

Posted by Chadwick Martin Bailey

Fri, Nov 13, 2020

Judy Melanson Spotlight Series Blog Opener (1)

In this very special spotlight, we talk with strategic thinker and empathetic leader: Judy Melanson. Judy has worked with some of the world’s leading brands including Hilton Worldwide, Disney, Avis Budget Group, Scientific Games and Caesars Entertainment on some of their biggest and most innovative challenges. After 28 years at CMB, Judy is heading into retirement, with an amazing support group of her family, friends, colleagues, clients, and the clients who’ve become friends and family.

1. How did you get started in your career?

I started my career as a tour guide in London 1984. The company (that’s since gone out of business) was very disorganized, and I spent most of those six months saying, “I’m sorry; I’m sorry you’re on your honeymoon and you have a twin bed; I’m sorry that you’re here but your luggage is in Hong Kong, etc.” After that, I sold timeshares in Newport, RI, and moved on to selling conference event space for a beautiful resort location on Cape Cod. I learned something from each experience, but most importantly I realized I wanted to get my M.B.A. and forge a new path.

These early jobs gave me an intimate look at the customer experience that I needed when I later become the lead of CMB’s Travel & Hospitality practice. I’ve worked with leading tour companies, leading timeshare companies, leading hotel companies, and I think I’m one of the few market researchers who have been in their shoes. I understood their challenges, because I’ve sat at the desk and listened to a traveler’s complaints. I have so much respect and appreciation for the brands who can do an excellent job, and the teams they’ve assembled.

2. What led you to CMB?

The late John Martin, co-founder of CMB, is the reason I started and the part of the reason I stayed at CMB. I met him while taking his market research class at Babson. John had so many stories about the new and exciting challenges he was addressing. I was transfixed by how market research could influence business strategy, and the range of clients he worked with. I basically begged him to hire me.

I’ve laughed (daily), I’ve cried (once or twice), but I’ve never had a boring day at CMB. The types of projects, and the challenges we tackle executing those projects, have kept me very happy and satisfied in my 28 years at CMB.

 

3. Tell us more about John’s influence in your career, and mentorship.

The list is long for everyone I’d love the chance to thank in my career, but John Martin was a strong influence. I learned so much from him, especially in the art of client engagement and interaction. He helped me figure out how to execute research and to manage the wide range of responsibilities expected of me.

Our clients at Hilton used to refer to John as the “mad scientist.” He’d show up to a meeting in the same blue blazer, disheveled hair, and frenzied energy, which would be dormant while he listened to their pain points and questions. But at some point, he’d find a white board, which was his instrument of choice. During the rest of the meeting, he’d channel his energy into these extremely complex challenges we were discussing, and suddenly we’d see clear action items that structured our research and addressed our client’s key business drivers. He was a master of translating research into the language of business.

It’s funny because I saw John’s “white board strategy” in action during a meeting with our colleagues recently. Brant Cruz used it so effortlessly to capture what was on the team’s mind, validate everyone’s voices at the table, and push the group further.

 

4. At CMB, we like to think ahead. What do you think your clients should be addressing for their longevity? How should they/we be evolving?

I think it’s really exciting for travel and hospitality brands to leverage the insurmountable amount of data at our fingertips, and to give that data purpose by creating more relevant, personalized experiences for its users. Netflix and Amazon provide such a nice standard for this. Both these leading brands leverage the products or content you, and those like you, consume, to serve recommendations tailored to your habits, interests, and needs. The curation of products and services—not just content—is so applicable to brands outside of the entertainment and ecommerce industries. Recommendation engines are hard to execute, but it’s possible. And the rewards could be great, leading future travelers to better experiences and stronger loyalty to your brand.

5. What do the researchers of tomorrow need for their success?

I think 2020 has highlighted this for many, but I’d say empathy. It’s so important in insights no matter the tool or technique you’re using. As researchers, we’re required to understand people as comprehensively and holistically as possible so that we can help brands make decisions. It’s a practice. Even though I think I’m pretty good at it, I’m always struggling to be better. The reality is that I’m a white woman of a certain age; the experiences and learning I’ve had are due to the way world meets me when I come into a room. Researchers must work hard to understand who an individual is, the experiences they’ve had, how that affects their decision-making, and to advocate that back to our clients and their stakeholders.

Some of the work that we’ve done, under the leadership of Erica Carranza, has helped at understanding identity. Our BrandFxSM approaches are super helpful in humanizing insights for our clients, and telling their stories, so that they can be truly customer-centric. The more we can integrate the voices of our respondents to our clients, the more effective our research is.

6. What’s the power of developing not good but great client relationships?

We’re so fortunate at CMB to have incredibly strong client relationships with leading brands (some even before my time at CMB!), who call us back time and time again for our best-in-class analytics, qualitative, storytelling, graphic design, etc. Sometimes that relationship is with the brand—because of how intimately we know their business—working with a variety of team members. Other times it’s with a person—because of how we support them—wherever their career takes them.

Part of the magic is the way we work with people, as people, supporting each other throughout the happy and challenging moments. We act as trusted advisors, with the strong objective of making our clients succeed. We all build those relationships in a slightly different way that’s authentic and honest. CMB gives us the freedom to find the right team, the right clients, and the rights accounts that are a match for us. Because we have a vested interest in the people we work with, as well as the business and industry in which they operate, our commitment as a team doesn’t wane.

One of the pleasures of working at CMB for so long is the relationship I’ve been able to develop. I’m so lucky to consider many of my clients, friends. The fact that I can enjoy my work and participate in the life of the people you’re working with has made my career a pleasure.

 

7. What does “The CMB Difference” mean to you?

When I first joined CMB, there were only about 12 of us, and we had to be flexible, proactive, and work closely together to get results. I feel closely connected to the growth that CMB has seen—growing from a small, start-up to a Top 50 market research firm of about 100 employees—and feel very proud of that participation.

We’re an extremely collegial organization. If I ask for advice or help from anyone in the organization, I know within minutes support will come. We hold each other up to a high standard, and work hard for each other because we like and respect one another. It’s a joy to work together. We take advantage of every opportunity to congratulate one another.

 

8. Talk a little bit about the CMB culture.

The essence of CMB comes down to couple of things: collaboration, excellent work, and quirkiness. It’s important to maintain our excellent standard of work…but we got to continue having fun. I hope that our quirkiness, our unique personalities, and our ability to have fun always stays in our legacy.

My favorite memories at CMB are when we’re able to gather together, whether it’s to celebrate our accomplishments at a company update, holiday celebration, or to uplift our community like our Light the Night fundraising. Thanksgiving is a perfect example. For the last 15 years, our management team has cooked and served the staff in our office to express thanks for everyone’s hard work over the year. It’s almost serendipitous that I’m retiring after this year’s (virtual) Thanksgiving celebration.

 

9. What’s next for you, Judy?

The best part of this next adventure is that I have no plans. I’ve been working since I was 15 years old. I’m going to take three months just to rest and reflect because I deserve it.

But I do want to discover where I can best add value in this next phase of my life. To ideate for the future, I bought a book on design thinking during life transitions. It’s super interesting to bring some of the principles we use in our research and apply it to me. The prompts are helping me to reflect on my goals, values, and identify where there may be gaps.

I always imagined having a set plan ready when I announced my retirement—what I would be doing, or where I would be going—but I realized that I couldn’t close this chapter of my life and create that plan at the same time. My days will probably be filled with painting, working in the greenhouse, and/or traveling (as COVID-19 permits).

Some of this exploration started when my youngest daughter went to college. I decided to try a new hobby and signed up for some drawing and painting classes. I’ve learned so much as a result of it. Painting is storytelling. You have to decide what the narrative is, what to accentuate or intensify, and what you want your viewer to experience. I’m excited to see where my story takes me next.

Judy Paintings Photo Only


Judy MelansonPlease join us in thanking Judy for her numerous contributions and incredible impact over her career, and congratulating her on her next step. Connect with Judy on LinkedIn here.

CMB's Spotlight Series brings to life the CMB Difference through our people and clients. Read all of our spotlights here.

Follow CMB on Facebook, InstagramLinkedIn, and Twitter for the latest news and updates.

Topics: our people, CMB Spotlight Series

Human Motivations Amid Disruption: 5G, COVID-19 & More

Posted by Chris Neal

Mon, Oct 26, 2020

Question: What do a global pandemic, 5G technologies, and puberty have in common?

Answer: Massive disruption as we know it.

Let’s start with the global pandemic. Like everyone, my household has had to adapt drastically in the face of a pandemic. In addition to stocking up on toilet-paper, our family’s digital dependence has sky-rocketed. It has exposed the limits of our internet access and Wi-Fi functionality, and frayed the fragile fabric of our family’s functionality. Our use of streaming video apps is much higher now, and it’s unlikely to go back to pre-pandemic levels long after the pandemic is gone. And we are not alone—in CMB’s COVID-19 tracking research, streaming video app usage across the US has also increased dramatically, and most people don’t expect it to return to pre-pandemic levels even after the virus is contained:

5G Blog COVID Data

Putting this problem into the Fogg model, we see our motivation to try something different/better for our internet access situation has increased dramatically. But, like most zip codes, broadband ISP competition is scarce. Better internet access is competing with toilet paper now in that upper left-hand quadrant of Foggville:

5G Blog Oct 2020 Fogg Model Internet Access-1

And this brings me to 5G technologies, the fifth generation technology standard for broadband cellular networks and the successor to 4G LTE.* This technology will increase the ability of many people to significantly improve their internet connectivity and potential, either as a fixed internet access substitute alternative, or for some households who may want to use 5G cellular connectivity as their only internet access (both inside and outside the home):

5G Blog Oct 2020 Fogg Model 5G-2

Oh, yeah: and puberty? My household is also navigating this pandemic with two teenagers, which is a miserable time of life to be stuck in the house with your parents pretty much 24/7. GenZ is the first generation to grow up not knowing life before pervasive mobile internet connections. One of their first waking memories was discovering the delights of a mobile fart app on the iPhone. And while I personally thought that was the pinnacle of potential for the mobile internet at the time, the industry has since risen to much greater heights. 5G is going to open a whole new world of application possibilities, and GenZ will be key in determining which of these take off. Video-enabled communications with friends (TikTok, FaceTime, Zoom, etc.), and online gaming will benefit most from 5G in the near-term. Usage has gone through the roof since the pandemic, and is unlikely to ever fully return to “normal”. The next wave may well be driven by Virtual Reality and/or Augmented Reality-enabled applications. Coincidentally, GenZ have the strongest interest in VR/AR gaming, and we know this generation is using online multi-player gaming for socialization more than ever during the pandemic.

UNDERSTANDING HUMAN MOTIVATION IN THE FACE OF CHANGING TECH ABILITIES

Any company trying to capitalize on the opportunities presented by a dramatically increased ability to deliver new and better 5G-enabled services to people can benefit by analyzing which specific human motivations are most important for any given new service, and how the pandemic may have altered these.

BrandFx Four Benefits Pillars

Let’s take basic broadband internet access in my household as an example:

  • FUNCTIONAL (what I want to do): our existing internet access is insufficient now that two teenagers are doing remote learning most days and two adults are teleworking: all four individuals are spending much more time on video streaming platforms, often simultaneously. This impacts the adults’ work productivity and the kids’ learning. Additionally, we are all streaming more digital entertainment (TV shows, movies, and online gaming for the kids) now that we don’t go out anymore. The Functional motivation is very clear.
  • SOCIAL (where I want to belong): Other people I know have switched to a 5G internet service. I’ve heard through online forums from people I don’t know about their experiences with 5G.
    • My kids rely on fast internet service with low latency for social connections. Problems with Facetime glitching or high ping/latency while playing Sea of Thieves with friends increases their (already high) sense of social isolation.
  • IDENTITY (who I want to be): I’d like to think I’m smart, leading edge, and open to change. I won’t keep to the status quo just because it’s familiar. And I solve practical problems around the household.
  • EMOTIONAL (how I want to feel): I am very frustrated and annoyed by my current internet service plan: the internet quality and reliability doesn’t meet my family’s current needs during this pandemic, I don’t feel like I’m getting value for the price I am currently paying, and I don’t feel respected when I call customer service.
    • I feel anxious, however, that switching to 5G may compromise the security of my internet access. And I am concerned that it may be unreliable (e.g., glitchy when there is severe weather, because I’ve heard about this with satellite TV connections).

Across many industries and products, we have found that the emotional, identity, and/or social motivations are just as—and often more—important determinants of a new product’s success than the functional ones. And the interactions across different types of motivations can be highly prescriptive for laying successful go-to-market plans in the face of extreme uncertainty.

We are neither soothsayers nor oracles, but we do know how to leverage the power of psychology to help navigate a future that promises to be full of change and more disruption.

*No, this is not another conspiracy blog about how 5G technologies caused the Covid-19 outbreak. They did not.


Christopher NealChris Neal, VP of CMB's Tech & Telecom Practice, has over 20 years of experience in high tech, online, consumer electronics, telecom and media insights, analytics, and consulting.

Follow CMB on Facebook, InstagramLinkedIn, and Twitter for the latest news and updates.

Topics: technology research, strategy consulting, technology solutions, mobile, business decisions, consumer insights, millennials, internet of things, marketing strategy, Consumer Pulse, emotional measurement, brand health and positioning, customer experience and loyalty, growth and innovation, Market research, emotion, Artificial Intelligence, BrandFx, consumer psychology, technology, Gaming, Gen Z, AR/VR, collaborative intelligence, COVID-19, consumer sentiment, Next-Gen Gaming, customer centricity, AI, Habit Loops

CMB Spotlight: Lori Vellucci

Posted by Chadwick Martin Bailey

Mon, Oct 19, 2020

Spotlight Series Opener Lori

Lori brings more than two decades of insights experience to her work with leading brands—translating business challenges into action, providing the voice of the consumer for both strategic and tactical initiatives to build brand and drive business results. Lori delivers insights, and the ever-important “now what?” through a deep understanding of consumer behavior, that’s always translated through the lens of business needs and realities.

Lori earned a B.S. in Business Administration from University of Connecticut, is Synectics® trained in brainstorming facilitation, and is a recurring guest lecturer at Stonehill College on Practical Marketing Research Methods and Creative Brainstorming Facilitation.

1. You have a lot of experience in market research. What keeps you excited about your work?

I love being on the vendor side; it’s never boring. I like knowing my client’s business challenges but I also have a broader industry perspective that I can bring to bear. It enables me to better serve our clients because I’ve been able to apply industry insights to new business challenges, and connect those learnings in meaningful ways. The icing on the cake is when we’re able to incorporate consumer psychology frameworks into a project and really dive deep to understand motivations, engagement, and behavior. I also never get tired of hearing our clients share how they implemented our research and the impact on their business and customers.

2. What advice do you wish you received earlier on in your career?

I wish I tackled the art of presenting earlier. I used to be scared to death of it, but somewhere along the line that changed. I love presenting to my clients now and helping others to build that skillset. It pushes me to think on my feet. If you have a challenge or shortcoming like that, understand that it’s not forever. You’re going to grow. You’re going to learn. It can be addressed through time, effort, and help from others.

I also tell younger researchers to get as much broad experience as they can. Raise your hand, ask for challenges, and do projects that are a little bit out of your comfort zone. People will notice that you’re interest and motivated, and it will set you apart. That’s important early in your career, so be sure to find an environment that’s conducive for your growth.

3. Tell us about a project/initiative you’re particularly proud of. What about that experience helped you to adapt, innovate, and/or grow?

We recently sought to understand young investors—those in their 20s and 30s who haven’t invested yet—in a new way. The research included a multi-pronged approach including online and in-home qualitative research, as well as quantitative. It was fantastic, and we got a lot of good insights that can be used to build products and services and talk to consumers in specific ways that resonate and meet consumers wherever they are in their investment journey. One takeaway that was particularly impactful was being able to group like-minded young investors and predict how they will treat their finances moving forward. It’s valuable information to have to fully meet young investor needs and also provides a lens for future studies.

4. At CMB, we like to think ahead. What about this project can Financial Services brands take away from? How should they/we be evolving?

There are so many new offerings, and ways to manage finances—they keep expanding and exploding. Companies with a long history in this business are now competing with those who have been “born online.” Changing the way these organizations work, what they focus on, and how they compete is really important. It’s clear that the investors of tomorrow are going to invest in a different way than we did, and certainly different from our parents and grandparents. They desire social connection online, so their investment journey is starting online, and on newer platforms like Venmo and Mint. Established companies really need to pay attention to this sea change, especially as people are hyper-focused on their finances and investments thanks to COVID-19.

5. And what about market research? How should we be evolving?

Like our clients, a lot is shifting in our industry. But one thing remains the same: we need to talk to the right people, at the right time, to get the insights we need. To get to that, the researchers of tomorrow must be well-versed in using different tools, and ways of doing research, including online (that’s obviously not going away). More importantly, how to work with these new tools and approaches. Many of our clients are finding ways to do some of the research themselves, and that’s ok. It just makes it that much more important for us to translate these insights into actionable results. There will always be new platforms, ways of looking at data and data mining, etc., but someone will always need to be there pulling it all together and extracting the insights.

6. Sounds like another reason to have strong client relationships! What’s your secret to developing not just good but great client relationships?

It starts with delivering superior work. It’s trust; trust that what we’re recommending is the right direction; trust that what we’ll deliver will be insightful and meet their needs and objectives. From there, it’s about knowing their business. We spend a lot of time at CMB understanding the trends, and individual businesses at a macro and micro level. How does our project fit into some of the broader initiatives or challenges that our clients have?

Also, when it’s all said and done, it’s our job to make our clients look good to their own clients and stakeholders. We must deliver insights that help our clients position themselves, and the work, within the organization. It’s so important for market research to show that focused, practical value. For example, for segmentation work, we go the extra mile and do socialization and activation sessions, and provide dynamic and interactive deliverables than can live on within the organization. All of these are quite powerful in helping an organization fully embrace and utilize a new segmentation, making it the framework for all communication and product development.

7. What does “The CMB Difference” mean to you?

It’s our culture and the way that we engage our employees. CMB strikes a good balance between using processes that work throughout the organization, without constricting growth, collaboration, or flexibility. For example, I recently had a proposal draft that I asked my colleagues to look at. Having that freedom to bring in colleagues who aren’t on my business unit because of their expertise is helpful. We delivered a proposal that didn’t miss a beat because of everyone’s ability to stretch into a different job that day and bring their skills to the table. CMB brings great minds from different disciplines to ensure that what we’re delivering is fantastic and insightful. Our clients always have a team working together on their behalf.

8. Tell us something we may not know about you. How does this make you a better insights leader?
My house is full of non-immediate family members. I foster cats, and mentor kids in foster care. These kids tend to be teens who’ve aged out of foster care, and sometimes end up living with me for a period of time. Currently, I have a young woman living with me whom I’ve been mentoring for about seven years, and some very hiss-y kittens.

My interest in fostering started in high school. I was interested in social work, but ultimately chose to pursue marketing. But that desire to help has never left me. About 10 years ago, I told myself “it’s now or never.” Fostering is about patience and perseverance. These are individuals and animals with challenges, and you have to find a way to help. It’s always different; there’s not one formula.

Spicy kittens


Lori VellucciLearn more about Lori here.

CMB's Spotlight Series brings to life the CMB Difference through our people and clients. Read all of our spotlights here.

Follow CMB on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter for the latest news and updates.


Topics: our people, CMB Spotlight Series

TMRE 2020 Takeaways

Posted by Kate Zilla-Ba

Wed, Oct 14, 2020

Post TMRE Oct 2020 Blog Opener

Planning a virtual conference is a job you couldn't pay me enough to do. From what I heard in chatting with this year’s TMRE attendees, sometimes the tech works and sometimes it doesn’t. However, those of us who attended witnessed a great willingness to get the most out of the event and a lot of positive energy. So for sanity’s sake, let’s keep the elephant in the room that is COVID-19 to the side, skip the things we have all heard already, and focus on the most interesting takeaways from this week’s event:

  • What’s Next for Preparedness? Some speakers said you should’ve been prepared for the chaos that is the current  business environment. But most said, “…umm who could have REALLY been prepared for this insanity?!?” For me, the key is how to be prepared for next month and next year. Thankfully, there were lots of tips on what alternative research tools (aka virtual) have been applied successfully and behavioral data was front and center.
  • A Warning for “Agile” Researchers. Talk about being "agile" was everywhere, but in many cases the word was used as a synonym for "fast". While fast can be great, it's not always best. Iterative agility in the traditional sense of the term for research can be amazingly impactful. An iterative approach– develop, measure, change, retest, rinse, repeat– clearly has a role to play in improving the research of tomorrow. But being quick is only as good as being smart. On this note, Abby Finnis, Sr. Director of Portfolio Insights & Analytics at PepsiCo Beverages, made the point of needing to embrace hybrid solutions that bring a variety of sources to bear during her panel session, “How Dunkin’, PepsiCo, and Unilever are Shaping the Future of Research.” To me, that feels more like the best type of agile.
  • How to have a seat at the table. This classic question was reframed a bit for 2020 as how to bring together disparate business users and uses of research to maximize the utility of insights and ensure successful socialization and implementation. Sure, some of this was looking for ways to ensure insights can be efficiently developed once, and be used in a variety of settings and applications. But more importantly, TMRE addressed how we can be more consultative. For some, being more consultative meant forgoing a degree of certainty, which is not necessarily a comfortable space for a researcher, but in the end we must “elevate” the most relevant themes to each stakeholder in order to make an impact, and to have a seat at the table.

These themes were particularly relevant in my colleague Lori Vellucci’s presentation “Wealth of a Generation | Get Inside the Minds of Young Investors,” which explored investors under 40. Her research on young investors, which leveraged our BrandFxSM approach, is a strong example of how brands can understand a diverse and important demographic, based on four pillars of human motivation: functional, emotional, social, and identity. Research like this can help people across disparate organizational silos create roadmaps for change – there’s a way to get your seat at the table; measuring in a focused ongoing way allows brands to keep insights relevant and quick-turn – that’s a way to be responsive to the oft-sought agility; and in a rapidly changing environment where being prepared means predicting right, understanding human motivation sets brands up for future success by, to quote one presenter at TMRE “building resiliency into business strategy.”


Kate Zilla-BaKate Zilla-Ba, Account Director

Don't forget to immerse yourself in our latest financial services research: Get Inside the Mind of the Young Investor. And stayed tuned for more of our findings—experiential and beyond.
Immerse Yourself
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Topics: strategy consulting, financial services research, conference recap, Market research, agile research, COVID-19, financial services

Leading 2020 in Mind, Body & Soul

Posted by Courtnie Hallendy

Fri, Oct 09, 2020

Chase Womens Leadership Day 2020 Blog OpenerFor me, 2020 has really solidified the importance of slowing down and listening to yourself – your mind, body, and soul – to be the best possible leader that you can. This was a resounding message throughout JPMorgan Chase’s Women’s Leadership Day—an annual event to fuel female ambition and advance financial equality for all.

Missed it? We got you, girl (and supporters of girls everywhere)!

INVESTMENT

  • Mentorship: Dr. Condoleezza Rice, the 66th Secretary of State and a woman who represents the art of possibility to so many (well said, Thasunda Brown Duckett), spoke a lot about creating a legacy—not for yourself, but for others. Be the first so that others can be the second, and the third, and so on. It’s cause for celebration, in spite of the external and internal pressures you feel. Mentorship is a vehicle to carry this legacy, and it starts with building a genuine relationship. Personally, I have two or three trusted mentors in my life and those relationships were cultivated and have evolved over the course of my career. As Dr. Rice says, mentorship must be earned, gradually and organically in order to reach a place you can encourage each other to be twice as good, and twice as confident. It starts with small steps.

WLD_Rice

  • Spread the Wealth: Sharing our wealth of knowledge includes finances. Janet Alvarez, Personal Finance Expert for the Ascent, emphasized the importance of social connection to empower and educate our community, which as we know, is a particularly important driver for young investors. Start with your #GirlTribe! Use a portion of your zoom book club or virtual wine night to share budget strategies, and investment lessons. Recently, I’ve been sharing with any friend that will listen how the advancements in financial services technology have made making and managing finances so easy.

#POWERHER

  • Power of the Consumer Voice: From trusting your inner voice to lifting the voice of your consumer, humanity is in everything we do. Adrienne Stewart-Gorgon, Co-Owner of Pound Cake Society, shared how her company changed its business model to meet the needs of their community (i.e. making face masks). In this journey, they heard from their newfound customers: vet clinicians, healthcare workers, and their families. In feeling their love, concern, and gratitude, Adrienne felt compelled to share their beautiful stories across the organization to keep them going, from her vendors to volunteers.
  • Rock the Vote: Speaking of beautiful stories (and beautiful voices!), LaTosha Brown, Co-Founder of Black Votes Matter, shined a light on just one of the strong women who’ve empowered her: her grandmother. Her grandmother, a woman denied the right to vote herself, brought LaTosha to the voting booths, instilling in her the “power of the sister vote.” She reminded us that women have always been at the forefront of transformative times in our nation’s history, and we mustn’t forget that. Dr. Rice affirmed this when she challenged the dismay and burnout that many Americans feel. To Dr. Rice, the only way to honor the generations before us, and they progress they made, is to do the work because democracy is hard work. We should be optimistic because the opportunities for further progress have been identified, and we’re building a roadmap forward.

WLD_Brown

HOPE

  • The Essence of Transformation: LaTosha posed the question “What is your radical reimagination of the future?” and “What’s your role in that transformation?” For Mindy Grossman, President & CEO of Weight Watchers (WW) her role is to galvanize hope so that her organization, and its people, can emerge stronger than ever—a message shared by Armin Molavi back in May. Amid disruption, brands must focus on what’s right for their consumer to ensure progress is made in a way that’s authentic, and just. This sentiment was echoed by Ginni Rometty, Executive Chairman at IBM, who urged organizations to recognize their obligation and power to solve the issues we face, and to do so by leading from their core purpose.

All in all, I hope you don’t feel alone in the stresses and anxieties you feel. Because our matter [body] matters, we must view the health of our mind, body, and soul as essential to helping the health and wellbeing of others, as women so often help to manage. Whether that means taking an extra-long shower because it’s the only place you can find some peace and quiet or having a daily dance break (sorry not sorry!), bring joy to your life and #POWERHER.


Courtnie HallendyCourtnie Hallendy is an Account Director at CMB, with more than 15 years of experience in market research on both the client and vendor sides of the business.

Follow CMB on FacebookInstagramLinkedIn, and Twitter for the latest news and updates.

Topics: storytelling, conference recap, growth and innovation, professional development, COVID-19