I had a meeting about 90 days ago with a knowledgeable woman who specializes in placing people on Corporate Boards. She works with individuals to build their resumes, coaches them on the types of opportunities that would make them more attractive candidates and ultimately puts them in touch with the networks where Corporate Board of Director searches take place. It’s a fascinating field and a growing need as corporate America ages and the need for succession planning takes place at all levels. We had a great meeting and while I don’t see myself seeking a role on a Corporate Board in the short term, it’s an interesting long-term prospect. As we concluded our meeting, I asked her for a realistic assessment; In 5 – 10 years would I be a viable candidate for a Board of Directors? Her reply?
Yes, you can definitely be a strong candidate. You’re different from most women I meet. You’re confident like a man.
Whoa! What exactly does that mean? Was she referring to my tendency toward short straight-forward answers? Or was their something that hinted at my capacity to argue it out in the conference room and then go have a beer with my opponent? I hadn’t put my feet up on the table nor did I take the newspaper to the restroom. But as I thought about her comment and the context in which she offered it, I realized that she meant it quite complimentary.
Okay. So what about it? How did I get confident like a man?
In thinking about it and looking at the calendar, I have to turn to the man with all the influence over such things – my Dad. While there was probably a little too much “suck it up, don’t cry, be tough” in our house, there was a heaping dose of “you can do and be whatever you want with hard work and tenacity”. And when some of those things that I worked for didn’t come easily and I was on the bench, there was always the adage “be prepared for when the opportunity does present itself”.
On this day and always I’m in awe of the man who owns the roots of my competitiveness and my character. He’s a man’s man who thrives on watching athletic competition, has caused his daughters to know that they can be whoever they want as long as they remember where they’ve come from, and then sneaks away to his computer to write a poem. It’s an amazing gift and one that I hope I can pass along to my own children. Happy Fathers Day Dad!
Huevos a la Flamenca (Dad’s favorite)
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/4 lb. chorizo or smoked ham or canned black beans, rinsed
- 2 sweet red peppers, chopped
- 3/4 lb ripe tomatoes, skinned and seeded
- 1.5 Tbs sherry
- 3/4 cup peas, shelled
- 1/4 lb green beans, snapped in 1 inch pieces
- 8 large eggs
- pinch of cayenne