Friday, September 26, 2008

ATHENA International 2008 Northeast Ohio ATHENA Awards Honors and Encourages Women to Reach their Leadership Potential

ATHENA International honors those who support and encourage the leadership potential in women. Shown here are the two Finalists of the ATHENA Award with Norma Rist (center) who is chairman of the board of directors of ATHENA International.

Susan Berger (left) Development and Community Relations Director of Positive Education Program was the 2008 Cleveland Recipient and Ilene Shapiro (right) Vice President Summa Enterprise Group of Summa Health Systems was the 2008 Akron Recipient.

Eleven women were honored with a banquet of over 300 and a 7-minute video describing their professional achievements, community service and leadership roles in assisting women. They each received a framed article from Inside Business magazine that described their devotion to helping other women in Cleveland, Akron and throughout Northeast Ohio.

The ATHENA Award finalists for Northeast Ohio were Vivian Celeste Neal, John S. and James L. Knight Foundation; Marie Covington, Covington Communications, Inc.; Laura Culp, Brockman, Coats, Gedelian & Co.; Dr. Giesele Robinson Greene, UnitedHealthcare; Terri Hamilton Brown, National City Corp.; Janet L. Miller, University Hospitals Health Systems, Inc.; Dr. Angela Neal-Barnett, Rise Sally Rise, Inc./Kent State University; Carole Sanderson, Herschman Architects, Inc.; and Chris Yuhasz, Akron Metropolitan Housing Authority.

Founded more than 25 years ago, ATHENA International is known for building women leaders and recognizing leadership initiatives among women. The organization is headquartered in Chicago and is well known for its award programs that honor women leaders in more than 220 locations throughout 5 countries. For more information, visit the organization's website at or call 312.580.0111.

Don't miss the Women's International Leadership Summit in March 2009!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Women Gain Valuable Tools From PowerLink

I saw an interesting article in Entrepreneur magazine recently that talked about a great program for women called PowerLink -- it matches women-owned businesses with a custom team of advisors who help them achieve growth objectives.

The progam helped one young woman reach a sales goal of $80,000 which may seem small by most business standards, except the business owner was 14 years old. She was paired with a seasoned business woman who had experience in the same industry and had also received the benefits of an advisory board.

For more information about this PowerLink success story, follow this link: GIRLS' CLUB - Club Power Lunches Aren't Just for the Guys Anymore.

To learn more about the international program of PowerLink, visit the ATHENA International website.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Interviewing Tips to Get that All Important First Job

Yesterday I talked with a recent graduate who is job hunting. He did several things right at the interview:
  • Showed up on time
  • Shook my hand, smiled and seemed pleasant
  • Wore a suit
  • Brought work samples from school projects
  • Brought an extra resume
  • Had a few prepared questions to ask the interviewer

Although before we even set the interview appointment, I told him we didn't have any openings, he was still very nervous. Being shy is a fact of life for some people. But there are still three things he could have done to improve his interview, which would help him feel less nervous and more confident:

  1. Prepare answers to the "standard" questions at a networking interview: tell me about yourself, what was your favorite class, what type of work are you looking for, what part of this project did you work on, how can I help you in your job search?
  2. Practice the interview by role playing with a trusted friend. Visualize the potential room. Practice answering the questions out loud. Three sentences is a good length generally for an answer. Saying "that's a good question" buys you some time.
  3. Practice presenting the work he completed in school by saying one or two statements about what he learned by doing the project.

Interviewing is an important job hunting skill just like writing the cover letter and sending a thank you note following the interview. If you aren't sure about interviewing questions, check out some of the websites that have sample questions and examples of good answers.