Author: Lily Herman
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I have heard that from dozens of women who attended last year’s Chairman Mom Flee. The event was one where women built life-long relationships, and many made substantial career changes. This video kinda says it all.
For those new to Chairman Mom, the Flee is our big annual event. We take over an entire former gold mining town in Northern California, and for four glorious days, there are only women in this town. (Even the staff!) We have epic speakers, epic food and epic music. But mostly it is a time for women to unplug, leave all the BS and obligations at home, and just be with other women sipping rosé, dangling legs in the Feather River, doing morning yoga, or aggressively looking to boost their careers.
I’ve got a PhD in Aladdin at this point. Not only have I seen the cartoon a million times, and the regrettable straight-to-DVD follow ups, but we saw the play in London last week, and the live-action remake the day after.
Aladdin is hands down my kids’ favorite movie and Jasmine is their favorite princess—so much so that we have a cat named after her. One of the highest compliments I’ve ever received was one night when I was going out to meet a friend and Eli told me I looked like Jasmine when she goes to the market.
I write a VERY HONEST monthly founder diary on my Patreon page (go here not to miss an issue). This month, I wrote about our process redesigning our logged-out homepage.
Recently, Chairman Mom has been working on a re-tooled homepage. We wanted to have a fresh look and everyone on the team liked the idea of illustrations. Paul and I come from a newspaper background so we’re always suckers for illustrations, and we wanted something that looked different. Too often stock photography is the easy, affordable cop-out.
Despite all of the amazing advice on this thread, Evie still struggles with tangles. It is not nearly as bad, and I haven’t tried all the remedies yet. I just ordered the dry conditioner, several of the detanglers, a tangle teezer, and a silk dream cap for her after re-reading the thread. French braids at night helped dramatically.
But sometimes we forget to braid it, or her dad doesn’t, and I inherit tangles again. The end result is she still screams the second I come at her head with a brush. I think it’s as much the fear of it as anything. But it’s our least favorite time in the morning. She grits her teeth and screams and cries and hits the air or the table with her fists.
Several months ago, the American Psychological Association released new guidelines on treating boys and men. They laser-focused on how toxic “traditional masculinity” is, causing widespread stress and anxiety for men. This month, the APA released new guidelines for treating girls and women, and it contained similar warning signals of the rigid parameters of “femininity” and in particular “motherhood” and how they can be damaging as well.
From a write-up in USA Today, that I read in Fortune’s daily Broadsheet newsletter: “Mothering puts tremendous pressure on women. If things aren’t working well in your life, if you’re feeling overwhelmed, the message you get is you need to be trying harder. … It’s a profoundly toxic perspective, and for mothers in particular it fails to take into account the systemic factors that we don’t have the language or vision to explain.”
Our community has been growing so fast this spring as our first corporate customers have been rolling out Chairman Mom as a benefit or trying us out as a pilot, that it’s been a while since I have asked a question.
Today I want to know your thoughts and advice on the fine line between giving your kids a better life than you had and spoiling them.
This is on my mind after our epic trip to London last week where the kids did everything from Sherwood Forest to a way-too-expensive Mad Hatter Tea Party in Soho to Legoland in Windsor to fifth row center seats at Aladdin at the Prince Edward Theatre to even buying up Disney Lego min-figs whenever we saw them in Evie’s mad pursuit to get a Steam Boat Mickey. (For some strange reason?)
“YOU CAN’T JUST GO AROUND KISSING SLEEPING GIRLS!”
That’s what Evie screamed out during a Legoland ride featuring Sleeping Beauty last week. That’s right: She’s just as much of a buzzkill as her mom.
I was thinking about this during our Chairman Mom Preach event last night, featuring Rebecca Hanover, the author of young adult The Similars. Rebecca was in conversation with our own Catherine Connors, who was once on the “Disney Princess Task Force” and was a former academic studying storytelling and fairy tales.
Newsletter editor Lily here, coming at you with a quick reminder.
Are you in the San Francisco area? I know what you’re doing tonight: Heading to our FREE June Chairman Mom Preach event featuring best-selling author Rebecca Hanover Kurzweil. Rebecca is talking about how to turn a passion—in her case, becoming a YA author—into a reality. If you ever needed that last little bit of inspiration to get going on your dream, this is the event you won’t want to miss.
The Preach starts at 6:30pm at The Assembly tonight, and you can get tickets HERE!
Um…how is June already here???
Monday is our monthly Chairman Mom Preach event with free wine, food, and badasses for CM members! This month it will include an extra dose of inspiration: Our guest is Rebecca Hanover Kurzweil, author of the young adult sensation The Similars, which was published early this year.
Reserve your ticket now!
Rebecca is another one of those amazing women I went to high school with who keeps popping up at Chairman Mom events. I reconnected with her maybe a decade ago when she’d moved back to the Bay Area after a stint in New York writing for Guiding Light and basically living a teenager in the 90s dream life.
This week, we’ve been breaking down the results of our survey into women and family support groups at companies. (Called “employee resource groups” or ERGs.)
We talked what’s good about them. (They have a dramatic impact on moral, retention and recruitment.) We talked what’s bad about them. (In the vast majority of cases, women aren’t paid to run them.)
Today, I want to talk about what women we surveyed want from ERGs and how companies can pretty easily do better. And there’s a lot of upside potential even for the 28% of companies that have an ERG. Even though nearly 90% of women aged 18-60 said being part of an ERG had made their lives better at work, only half of them felt that companies did enough now to support ERGs. Imagine the impact if more companies properly supported these groups!