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In the Company of Women

In the Company of Women book review
Book image via Grace Bonney on Amazon

Artists, designers, chefs, musicians...makers of all sorts are featured in the book, “In the Company of Women” by Grace Bonney. Each woman featured in the book is an entrepreneur and through an interview style approach, Grace learns information about the women’s views of success, business and working as a female maker.

In the Company of Women Book on Display
Image of book via Grace Bonney on Twitter

In the Company of Women Artist in Workshop Photo
Image via Design Sponge : Seeing the artist in her workshop allows readers to envision working as a maker.  

Designing Your Career with Elaine Welteroth

Masterclass Review Elaine Welteroth
Original image via @ElaineWelteroth
There is design for our homes and our clothes, but there is also design for our careers. To design something means that a decision is made about the look or function of an object (like a building, dress, etc.) and then plans are created before the object is made. Just as a fashion designer sketches out the idea for next season’s clothing collection, you can craft a design for your career journey. 

Elaine Welteroth wearing turquoise power suit for Masterclass
Image via MasterClass: In her class, Elaine takes on the topic of powerful careers while wearing a strong suit in a shade of teal that pops. 

In her Masterclass, Elaine Welteroth tackles this very topic of “Designing Your Career.” Elaine has become an expert in navigating career dreams in her own journey. She made history in 2012 as the first black beauty director at Teen Vogue and again in 2016 for reaching the high profile role of editor-in-chief. Her history making ways did not stop at the acquisition of those titles. While working at the helm of Teen Vogue, Elaine also made a point of helping the publication evolve from solely covering fashion, to incorporating cultural and social topics. 

Elaine Welteroth wearing gingham suit with book More than Enough
Image via @ElaineWelteroth -- Elaine pictured with her book, More than Enough. The book is part memoir, part life and career advice. 

 Many would have believed her career had reached its climax by acquiring such admirable positions with Teen Vogue. But Elaine had other ideas and began making career transitions. Since leaving the magazine in 2018, Elaine has branched out as a book author, public speaker, television personality with The Talk and Project Runway and most recently, as an expert in her career themed Masterclass.

1980s Power Dressing

1980s women's work fashion collage

 
Bright colors. Polka dots. Kitschy phrases. Flowers. Mixed prints.


1980s power dressing by Moschino

These fun looks are not what you would normally imagine powerhouse women wearing when they entered the 1980s boardrooms dressed to impress. However, designer Jeremy Scott at Moschino offered a fresh spin on 1980s era power dressing for the modern woman in his Resort 2021 collection. 

1980s power dressing by Moschino
Pattern plays were used throughout the collection, as seen here with polka dots and vibrant colors playfully juxtaposed against the backdrop of a traditional pant suit. 

Growth Mindset

Growth mindset for your career
Image via Pexels
Growth is a fundamental idea for every part of life, including our careers. What better way to start thinking about the idea of growth than to look at the flowers and plants in our gardens? 

For a plant, the journey begins with the seed. Though seeds vary in shapes and sizes, each seed holds the potential to burst forth new life. But the future of that seed depends on the right conditions. Without the right inputs and environment, the potential of what is possible for the seed never comes to fruition. We will never see the peonies bloom if the seed doesn’t first have soil, water and sunlight. 
  
For many of us, we have a desire to achieve goals and reach our own definition of success. The seed for our future self is present, but how do we get to the end goal we dream about? Scientists have found that mindset matters. Like plants, our brains need the right inputs to steer our life and allow us to grow into the potential we each possess. Mindset may be the most important input our brains need to help us boost growth and move forward. 

The Science
The term growth mindset has its roots in research that dates back more than three decades. Dr. Carol Dweck coined the terms growth mindset and fixed mindset after studying student attitudes about failure in the classroom. During her studies, she found that if students believed they could become smarter they would also spend more time studying and practicing their skills. Their beliefs influenced their actions, which in turn impacted their achievement levels for the better. This belief in the power to transform the brain became known as growth mindset. On the opposite end of the spectrum is fixed mindset, which just as it sounds, does not change or develop beyond current conditions. 

Growth mindset definition

As studies about the brain and mindset continued, neuroscientists discovered that connectivity between neurons (the brain’s messengers) can change and improve. This ability to essentially re-wire the brain with new connections and increased strength (known as neuroplasticity) leads to speedier transmissions within the brain and body. 

The guiding force to recharging the brain with new neuron connections? Mindset. A person’s mindset guides behaviors and behaviors dictate outcomes. 

How Kate Middleton Created Her Professional Brand

Professional branding tips of Kate Middleton
Image of Kate via Vogue UK

 The 7 Ps of marketing is a framework used by companies and brands to sell products or services. Whether you’re shopping for a new shirt, planner or hair stylist, you often experience the story of the product or service as it’s being told through the 7 parts that make up the brand’s marketing. 

Just what are the 7 Ps? They are product, price, promotion, placement, packaging, positioning and people.

What's personal branding list

Not only are the 7 Ps used in commercials and social media advertising for that pair of shoes you’ve been eyeing, but they can also be used to shape your professional brand. Whether you’re working at a retail store, an engineering firm, a hospital or Buckingham Palace as a Duchess, you have a professional brand. 


Your brand is what allows others to gain insight into who you are and what you do. It’s an extension of your reputation and can be purposefully shaped to ensure that it is telling the best and most authentic story about you. 


Some may think of this as a personal brand since it's about you, but as we consider applying this to our careers, it's helpful to think of it as your professional brand.


Why does a professional brand matter? 
Because your story is what connects you to other people and can help ensure your career journey heads in the direction you want.


Kate Middleton, aka the Duchess of Cambridge, provides endless fashion inspiration for royal fans. However, there is more to her image than meets the eye. Though she is a titled member of the royal family, she, like all of us, has a professional brand. Kate's brand has evolved since her days at university with careful cultivation to make her the Duchess we know today. 


To better understand the 7 parts of branding and how to use them for your own brand, we’ll dive into the key aspects of Kate Middleton’s brand as Duchess of Cambridge. As you read through each of the Ps for Kate, think about what each P means in your own brand.