2021 BLOG SERIES- WOMAN, MOTHER, SALES EXECUTIVE TURNED PODCASTER
Have you ever heard the expression if you need something done, ask a busy person? For the record, this expression embodies the spirit of our next blog feature, Margaret Weniger. Woman, Mother, and Sales Executive Turned Podcaster.
Margaret and I initially met through a Linking Indy Women networking event. Her inclusive spirit and fun demeanor created an immediate connection for the two of us. However, it was during our second conversation I mentally started to tally up the little snippets of things Margaret casually mentioned. From there, it dawned on me just how much this successful woman is tackling. All of it in the spirit of promoting other women and creating a safe space to follow YOUR dream. Whatever that dream may be.
Margaret shares with us pieces of her journey both professionally and into the motherhood space. A key for Margaret always being in a learning and growth mindset. By no stretch has this been easy for her. In fact, she has gone through being fired from sales executive positions which felt very soul crushing and confusing at the time. She also went through the emotions of resisting her calling because of self-doubt and even some imposter syndrome.
“My inner fraud kicked in when I thought about creating this community for women.”
Even through this though, she has found peace. Additionally, has come to the understanding there is nothing wrong with her (or you). In fact, we’re all quite normal being abnormal. Through working with a coach, validating her thoughts and feelings, self-reflection and visualization, Margaret has a great story to share.
“Whatever you do, don’t force yourself through. You’re just ignoring the problem.”
THE WOMAN BEHIND SALES EXECUTIVE TURNED PODCASTER
Margaret is mother to a son Bodi (5), daughter Dillon (3), and a baby boy due in June. She and husband, Luke, live in Atlanta, GA and enjoy a busy life chasing around their kids while simultaneously enjoying successful careers.
Holding various sales executive positions, Margaret has always enjoyed training salespeople and is drawn to high potential individuals. Without a doubt, a constant learner, who absorbs content from books to podcasts to articles.
“To be honest, I love work. Motherhood, especially in the beginning, has been hard. I wouldn’t consider myself a baby person, so the transition to slowing down in my career came with a little bit of resentment.”
I LOVED her vulnerability in this statement. As a woman who felt a similar conflict at the birth of my own children, the guilt and shame that can follow these natural emotions can be overwhelming. In turn, we don’t share this information due to fear of what others will think or shame in our own admission.
Ironically, if we did, we would likely find others feeling a similar emotional roller coaster of mom and career guilt.
Only after she recognized and acknowledged these feelings did she move into a place of acceptance.
“I got to a point where I accepted the stage we were in with the kids. Not trying to maintain the pace and schedule but rather focusing on this being a season. NOTHING is permanent.”
Her advice for stepping into the career Mom transition…
“We become really good at efficiency and priority. Quality over quantity. Ask yourself what the best use of your time is. And again, remind yourself this is a SEASON.”
RISING TIDE PODCAST- SALES EXECUTIVE TURNED PODCASTER
A networker by nature, sales executive by trade, and women supporter by calling, she found herself immersed in the company of amazing stories.
Alternatively, she recognized a platform didn’t exist to share the women’s incredible stories to a broader audience. As a result, Margaret started the Rising Tide podcast in October of 2020 to fill this void.
Admittedly, she found herself resistant to being that woman. It was not a quick or easy transition for sales executive turned podcaster Margaret.
“I really didn’t want this to be my calling. I had spent a long time in a male dominated industry and establishing myself. Frankly, I didn’t want to be seen as a woman activist. It was a year and a half in the making before I finally stopped resisting what kept getting thrown in my face.”
RESISTANCE TO ALL IN- SALES EXECUTIVE TURNED PODCASTER
Part of the resistance stemmed from feeling like supporting women in the workplace was too big of an issue to tackle. Additionally, to shift from a place of resistance to all in, she changed her perspective on what it meant to be a woman activist.
This is where her sales training supported her. Margaret knew she wanted to keep her platform productive. It’s not a space to vent and complain but rather to share a journey. Solve the root of problems and be authentic.
“I don’t like it when people push air. For instance, sometimes in sales you can have a lot of hype but provide little value. It was important to me to make sure the Rising Tide podcast was more than pushing air. Ultimately, it’s about providing actionable insights.”
Furthermore, Rising Tide is designed to support you and what you want in your career. YOU decide and that’s great. The premise being we all have our opinions and likely won’t agree on every detail, but the more exposure women can have, the better, more confident decisions they make for their own path.
Her advice when feeling pulled and resisting…
Decide what it is you are trying to do. Reflect. For example, is it climbing the corporate ladder? Is it starting a new business? Even being a super present mom? Whatever it is, take some time to acknowledge this and then figure out a way to achieve sustainable and amazing results in this particular season. Reminding yourself it can always change. Nothing is permanent.
Margaret has walked through an interesting career path with unbelievable twists and turns and has rolled with these punches like a champ. Coming out the other side not angry and bitter, but rather empathetic and clear headed.
Two times now, she was the first person on staff to become pregnant at software startups. Both companies too new to have an existing maternity policy, much less thoughts on how new parenthood would affect the work environment. Her advice for someone finding themselves in this space…
“Pay attention. My alarm bells were going off, but I ignored them. I also took way too much responsibility for this being my problem. I now realize this was not about my capabilities or even my engagement at work. It’s okay to have the conversation with yourself. There’s a move you can make. What are you getting out of this work experience and is it worth it?”
I definitely can’t wait for you to get your Scaling a Family While Scaling a Startup book published! (My shameless plug for you to get started on this book Margaret!! LOL.) Here is an article she wrote on this subject for anyone finding themselves in this space. It’s amazing!
HIRE MORE WOMEN
One of the problems she sees with companies is a focus on “hire more women” without much thought beyond the statement. While this may be a great start, what is the company doing to ensure women feel a belonging to the organization once they’re in it? Additionally, their ability to be authentic in the workplace. Even training and development for future growth.
And we haven’t even gotten into policies on parental leaves and schedule flexibility for family emergencies. Who hasn’t gotten the dreaded fever call from daycare?! UGH!
Don’t assume you have to know everything. Stand in your power and ask. Before you immediately default to blaming yourself, take a step back and think about it more objectively. As women, we’re so hard on ourselves… what advice would you give your friend? Now be your friend.
RAISING A FAMILY- ADVICE TO HER KIDS
Finally, I asked Margaret what some key pieces of advice are she will give to her children as they grow up.
“Try as many things as you can.”
The more exposure you have, the more you are in the habit of being new to something. It becomes less scary and crippling and more your normal. In addition, more exposure increases the likelihood they will find something sooner than later that lights them up inside.
A second piece of advice was about reputation.
“When you commit to something, do a really good job. This is how you start to build a reputation.”
Lastly, “realize people don’t think like you do.”
This is beautiful actually because it not only makes you a special and unique individual, but it also makes you curious. In fact, this curiosity leads to more exposure and learning more about yourself and others.
In summary, Rising Tide was created as a community for women to understand others have similar thoughts and feelings. Connection through a similar journey or thought process. Even a space where women understand they are not alone and their abnormal is actually quite normal.
“When thinking about what you really want to do, take some time. Suspend logic and ask yourself, if you could have it the way you want, what would this look like?”
Visualizing with no rules and then taking a step back to figure out what steps would need to happen for this to become a reality. This can be with work, a side hustle, family, starting something new, anything.
There are so many things you can do. Set a course and take a step.
Unsolicited (LOL), she also recommends hiring a coach if you have the financial means to do so. Coaching not only creates accountability but also provides time for you to check in with yourself without just floating through life with nothing to give to anyone.
In closing, Margaret’s calling is currently to be the platform for women to share their journeys.
She leaves you with this:
“Continue to show up. Stay open. Your current situation doesn’t stop you from what you want to do. It just might not be on the timeline you originally thought. The key, however, is to continue listening to yourself and taking the best next step.”
Thank you, Margaret, for sharing your story. In particular, the amazing nuggets of great advice. The Mom Huddle community can’t wait to support Rising Tide!
Every day focus on your purpose. Remember why you do what you do. We don’t get burned out because of what we do. We get burned out because we forget why we do it.
– Jon Gordon
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