SF Recap: Changemaker Chat with Tiffany Shlain

Finding Your Voice

This month, Changemaker Chats started a conversation about ‘Voice.’ We sat down with Tiffany Shlain, Emmy-nominated filmmaker and founder of The Webby Awards, to talk about her unique voice, what she is doing to ensure that the voices of women are heard after this past election cycle, and her advice to young and powerful women.

We loved hosting an exclusive screening of Tiffany Shlain‘s film,  “50/50: Rethinking the Past, Present & Future of Women + Power”. After the screening, she shared the most powerful lessons she has learned in her personal and professional journeys.

  • We are goddesses: Our history shows that women were on equal footing with men in early societies. We used to be goddess and we should remember that. Let’s take back the word ‘power’ and enable other women — and men — because this is a ‘we’ thing.
  • Take back control of your time with Tech Shabbat: Tiffany and her family turn off all devices every Friday at sundown to be fully present with each other. By connecting to the people most important to her (without the chatter of Twitter and texts), Tiffany finds that her creative energy is replenished and she is ready to tackle the upcoming week.
  • Find your voice: Tiffany had men narrate her films because it was the norm. After successfully delivering a UC Berkeley commencement speech, she realized how important it was to include her own voice in her films about advocacy. What did she learn? Be honest. Talk about your successes and failures. If you’re a mother, talk about it and celebrate it.
  • Toot your own horn: When Tiffany started making films, she found promoting her own films was challenging. She quickly learned that if she did not advocate for herself, no one else was going to do it for her.
  • On being your own boss: As your own boss, you make your own hours. If being your own boss isn’t feasible, work with your boss to create a flexible schedule so you can be a participatory parent. Want more strategies to make it work? Watch Motherhood Remixed for more candid advice.
  • Open up your definition of the word ‘mentor’: Tiffany has a lot of peer mentors — her friends, her parents, sometimes her kids. Mentorship is about the relationship, so talk to people you find interesting and admire. Or share your knowledge by mentoring someone else.
  • “Don’t Agonize. Organize”: Many women in the room acknolwedged that they’re still struggling with the results of the recent election. Tiffany‘s response: The time has come to organize, not agonize.

Want to stay connected to Tiffany and her work? Here are a few ways:

  • Sign up for Tiffany’s newsletter
  • Watch her other films
  • Sign up for 50/50 Day on May 10, 2017 and invite your friends and colleagues
  • Join the Women’s March on Washington on January 21st. Stay tuned for more info on joining women from the DC, NYC, and Boulder Changemaker Networks (and Tiffany and her networks!)
There are many ways to get involved, both with Tiffany and the Changemaker Chat network, in the coming months to ensure that your voice is heard.