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BIG NEWS: The Power of Us, Quantified in HBR

We’re proud to have made it into the Harvard Business Review today, in an article by happiness researcher and Conference for Women veteran Shawn Achor.

You can read the full article here, but here are our main takeaways:

  • People can be cynical about the utility of women’s professional conferences. Achor’s [male] seatmate on a recent flight said “I’m all for equality, but I’m not sure what good it will do.”
  • What good CAN it do? Achor spoke with fellow happiness researcher Michelle Gielan, and the two decided to survey attendees in advance of the 2017 Conferences for Women in Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, and Texas.
  • They wanted to know what, if any, financial or intellectual impacts could be measured among attendees.
  • They surveyed 2,600 women, using prior attendees to study outcomes and first-time attendees as a control group.
  • Among attendees who had never attended the Conference, 18% had received a promotion over the past year. During the same economic period, 42% of women who had attended the Conference received a promotion.  
  • The likelihood of receiving a promotion doubled after attending the Conference for Women.

  • 5% of women in the control group received a pay increase of more than 10% compared to 15% of women who had attended the Conference.  
  • Attendees of the Conference for Women had triple the likelihood of a 10%+ pay increase.
  • 71% of prior attendees reported that they “feel more connected to others.” Achor’s book Big Happiness argues that social connection is the greatest predictor of success and happiness, and tangentially leads to longer, healthier lives.
  • 29% of prior attendees reported that they “agree a lot” with the statement “I feel happier.” 78% of prior attendees reported feeling “more optimistic about the future” than before the Conference. 25% of prior attendees reported that they “agree a lot” with the statement “I feel more capable of handling stress in a positive way.”

“Laurie Dalton White, founder of the Conferences for Women, adds ‘Something special happens when you see that you are not alone. Making connections and building relationships with other attendees and speakers helps women form an understanding of their worth, and then they learn strategies to ask for promotions, seek fair pay, and even become a mentor to others. 

Shawn Achor and Michelle Gielan

Shawn Achor and Michelle Gielan

‘We invite women like Michelle Obama and Sheryl Sandberg to speak at our conferences not just because of their own personal success stories, but because they are role models who inspire women in both big and small ways.'”

 

Achor and Gielan’s findings suggest that business leaders ought to encourage employees to find social connections in a professional context.

The result may be a happier and healthier workforce.

Posted in Blog, Latest News Tagged , |

Watermark Conference App FAQ

How do I download the app?

Just search “WatermarkConf” in your app store, or use the appropriate download link below.

Download now on the App Store   Get it now on Google Play   BB-World-button   Windows-store-button

What if I already have the app from the 2017 Conference?

You do not need to download the app again; simply refresh the app by tapping “Menu” in the top left corner, then click on “Update App Now.”

How do I log in?

Tap “LOGIN” in the top-right corner, then simply type in your email address and click “Continue.”

How do I create a profile?

Once you’ve logged in by providing your email address, you can customize your profile by tapping “Profile.” Fill in as little or as much info as you’d like. You can also auto-fill your profile by clicking “Use Your LinkedIn Profile.”

How do I create My Schedule?

You can only create a schedule if you’ve logged in and have finished a profile. Once this is done, simply tap the session you’d like to add to your schedule from the AGENDA screen, and then click “+ Add to Your Schedule.”

How do I view my schedule after I’ve added sessions?

Tap the Menu icon in the top left corner of the app; then “My Schedule.” OR visit the “My Schedule” module on the Home Screen.

If I add sessions to my personal schedule on the app, does that mean I’m guaranteed space in that session?

NO. We do not require or allow attendees to reserve space in any session. Creating a schedule on the app simply allows you to better plan out your busy day. You are not guaranteed space in a session when you add it to your schedule on the app.

What are the codes that follow the session titles in the agenda? (e.g., POE, W, MC)

Great question! These codes describe the type of session:

     POE = Panel of Experts (a thought leader and three panelists engage in a discussion)

     W = Workshop (one speaker, delivering a presentation and providing takeaways on the topic.)

     MC = Moderated Conversation (these sessions are typically “fireside chat” style conversations, consisting of a moderator, and a main speaker.)

How can I connect with a specific attendee?

Simply tap “Menu” on the top left hand corner of your app, then click on “Attendees.” You can search attendees by name, company, or title. You can also send a direct, private message to someone you’re chatting with inside the Conference Community, by clicking on their name, then choosing “Send them a Message.”

How do I use the Conference Community feature?

Under “Menu,” or on the Home Screen, you’ll find the Conference Community. Here, you have a really unique opportunity to reach out to ask questions, learn about job opportunities, or just network and learn more about fellow attendees. Think of this as our very own “NextDoor.”

What’s the red dot under “Menu?”

When you see a red dot on your home screen, that means the app needs to be updated. Simply click on “Menu” on the top left, then click on “Update App Now.”

What if I have more questions about the app?

Within the Attendees section, send a direct message to Danielle Leshinski.

Posted in Latest News

Additional Ticket Notification List

The 2019 Watermark Conference for Women is sold out and we do not anticipate releasing any more tickets. However, if you would like to be notified if any tickets do become available, please fill out the form below. You may also be interested in our inaugural Workplace Summit. Read More

Posted in Blog, Latest News

Ways to Help #Harvey Storm Victims

Our hearts go out to all the Harvey hurricane and flood victims. If you are looking for ways to help, the New York Times recommends these national organizations:

The American Red Cross is accepting donations on its website. You can also text HARVEY to 90999 to donate $10.

AmeriCares takes medicine and supplies to survivors.

Catholic Charities provides food, clothing, shelter and support services to those from all religious backgrounds.

Donations to the Salvation Army can be made online, by calling 1-800-SAL-ARMY (1-800-725-2769) or texting STORM to 51555.

AABB, which coordinates a task force to manage blood collection efforts during disasters, put out a call on Sunday for blood donations in the aftermath of Harvey. Most in demand: those with type O-positive blood.

If you know of other trustworthy organizations and local drives, please post them in the comments section.


  Read more from the September 2017 newsletter

Posted in Latest News Tagged |

BizBash Selects Watermark Conference for Women as One of San Francisco’s Top 100 Events

June 20, 2017 — From galas and benefits, to entertainment, sporting events, and more, BizBash has announced its 2017 list of Top 100 Events in San Francisco and has named Watermark Conference for Women to this exclusive list. To select and rank these events, BizBash considers the event’s influence within the industry, in addition to innovation, reach, economic impact, and more.

Now in its fourth year, the Watermark Conference for Women has become a leading resource for professional women in Silicon Valley and beyond—hosting outstanding speakers like Madeleine Albright, Sheryl Sandberg, Viola Davis, Hillary Rodham Clinton, Condoleezza Rice, Diane von Furstenburg, Mindy Kaling, and more.

“So many high-profile events call San Francisco home, and to choose the best from this diverse landscape is no easy task,” says Beth Kormanik, BizBash executive editor. “Today’s top events reflect a sharply honed sense of mission, thoughtful production, and engaged guests—factors that all contribute to their success.”

Registration for the 2018 Conference opens in September 2017. Join the mailing list to receive registration updates and speaker announcements.

Posted in Latest News