Q: What have you been up to since you got your new MBA?
A: Since completing the MBA program in 2014, I've launched a new early-stage impact investment fund focused on funding startups addressing global social and environmental challenges in education, health, financial services, sustainable agriculture, and energy. My husband and I also moved back to San Francisco from Brooklyn, bought a house, and are now expecting our first baby this summer (all goals I was envisioning 12-18 months ago during the MBA program)!
Q: How do you want to feel? What do you do to feel that way?
A: Purposeful, happy, fulfilled, present, grateful. I try to balance doing the seemingly-endless number of tasks on my plate professionally with keeping a much bigger, longer-term view of why I'm working on what I'm working on. I've tried to stop blurring the boundaries between work time and personal/free time so that when I'm not working, I'm actually dedicated to recharging and not feeling distracted by work anxieties. I try to take stock of progress, actually talk about the things I'm grateful for rather than just complain about what I'm frustrated with, and thank people.
Q: What does success mean to you?
A: Professionally, success to me will mean that our investment fund demonstrates that our companies can make significant impact on some of the world's greatest challenges and generate returns to investors.
Personally, it will mean that I'm doing something that I feel good at, am proud of, that I have a bigger purpose in doing it, and am also able to support the kind of life I want to lead outside of work.
Q: What’s stuck with you most from the new MBA Curriculum?
A: Self-compassion, self-compassion, self-compassion.
Not reverting to a worst-case-scenario mentality in thinking about the future, which has helped me get a lot more comfortable with ambiguity and problem-solving in the present rather than getting caught up in anxiety about "what-ifs".
That short spans of meditative breathing and mindfulness on a regular basis can really help me stay grounded, and generally are most important when I feel like I have the least amount of free-time to do them!
Q: What are the 2 or 3 things that help you stay on track?
A: I find myself coming back to the "I am" practice regularly -- I think because it is so simple and easy for me to remember!
I still try to have a glass of water and take a moment to breathe first thing in the morning before I dive into getting ready for the day / responding to email / etc.
Q: How can the new MBA community help you?
A: I would love to connect more in person with the MBA community in SF, and particularly would love to find ways to work with anyone interested in investing and/or starting new impactful ventures. I'd also love to engage with moms-to-be or new moms as I start this new chapter myself, which I know will bring new challenges and joys of creating success with ease!
Q: What advice would you give other women on how to create success with ease?
Q: At the risk of using a clichéd adage, you can't give from an empty cup. Focusing on self-compassion and kindness has been a great re-set for me to then be able to focus on what really matters most to creating success, rather than just striving frenetically.
Q: Anything else you want to share?
A: Thanks Lisa and Vanessa for continuing to build such a great practice and community dedicated to powerful women! You are wonderful!