How to DISRUPT the Status Quo

By Laura Gmeinder

In a new world, where #metoo and #timesup are the movements of the day, more women are finding their voices to disrupt the status quo. There’s power in numbers. And we are just getting started.

Women often hesitate to assert themselves. The media is quick to say it is because of a “confidence crisis,” but it is so much more than that. From an early age, we are raised to be agreeable and it’s hard to shake the inner “good girl.” (Remember who you were before the world told you who you should be?)  We are taught to be risk adverse and to avoid putting ourselves in situations that will lead to us being judged, or worse, failing.

So, what does it take to push past your comfort zone to DISRUPT the status quo?

  • Harness Your Inner Leader: Believe in yourself enough to dance with fear—and to risk failing. Build on small wins to grow your confidence and embrace failure as a lesson.
  • Take Time to Reflect: Identify a challenge by considering: “What change are you drawn to?”; “What is your solution?”; “What is the personal cost in terms of time and energy?; Potential benefits?
  • Expect the Best, Prepare for the Worst: Put together talking points; it will calm your nerves and ensure that your ideas are communicated effectively. Conduct a mock discussion with a friend or trusted colleague to figure out what your blind spots are. Then adjust from there.
  • Take Initiative: Have the meeting. Propose change. Challenge the status quo. And do it with a NATO mindset = Not Attached To Outcomes. Regardless of the results, trust you did your best and learned a lot. Focus on what you can influence moving forward by asking for constructive feedback. Celebrate taking a risk (Cheers to you!). And repeat.

Get ready to ignite your inner leader toward purposeful action in Gmeinder and Coreyne Woodman Holoubek’s workshop “DISRUPT THE STATUS QUO” at the 2018 THRIVE Conference on April 27. For more info and to register, visit:

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