Women, Leadership & Power

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For the Day of Conversation - Women, Leadership & Power Women in Leadership Overview, links to resources and conversation guide for the day of your conversation.
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Women, Leadership & Power. In our day, women are increasingly sought out and encouraged to assume leadership positions today in many walks of life from business to community organizations to politics. While some call for further changes towards greater equality, others raise cautions about erasing any gender distinctions in an attempt to "make everything the same." Are there ways the further expansion of women's rights can complement traditional structures in society - or are they destined to be at war? This broad topic on women and leadership can lead to many other conversations.

Initially, this conversation was designed for a group of women of diverse backgrounds to discover what works for women in leadership and what, if any, common barriers exist in our current systems. During this initial conversation with women, we discovered a strong desire to include men, since most solutions seemed to require partnership and systems wide changes. In subsequent conversations between liberal and conservative-leaning participants, we learned how widely different the views of women's roles are still in society. Any and all of these aspects of the conversation (and more we haven't explored) could be highlighted in your own LRC. Here is potential background material: New York Times interview with four executive women


Rounds/Questions: The Living Room Conversation Starts Here
A Living Room Conversation flows through 5 rounds of questions and the closing. During some rounds, each question will be addressed. In other rounds, the multiple questions are intended as conversation starters and you need only respond to the one or two that matter the most to you. In the event the conversation wanders off track, we will refer to this Conversation Guide to get it back on track.

Round One: Getting Started / Why Are We Here?
● What interested you or drew you to this conversation?

Round Two: Core Values
Answer one or more of the following:
● What sense of purpose / mission / duty guides you in your life?
● What would your best friend say about who you are and what makes you “tick”?
● What are your hopes and concerns for your community and/or the country now and long-term?

Round Three: What are your biggest concerns about the topic area selected?
Remember that the goal for this Living Room Conversation is for all of us to listen and learn about where we have different opinions and where we have shared interests, intentions and goals. Answer one or more of the following questions:
● What is power?
● What is a powerful leadership moment you’ve experienced?
● What are the other issues around women, power and leadership?
● What is your hope or aspiration for women, leadership and power?

Round Four: Reflection
Answer one or more of the following questions:
● In one sentence, share what was most meaningful / valuable to you in the experience of this Living Room Conversation.
● What learning, new understanding or common ground was found on this topic?
● Has this conversation changed your perception of anyone in this group, including yourself?

Round Five: Accomplishment and Next Steps
Answer both of the following questions:
● What is one important thing you thought was accomplished here?
● Is there a next step you would like to take based upon the conversation you just had?

Closing – Thank you! Please complete the feedback form to help improve Living Room Conversations.