Women’s advancement can start in the home. Jan Frolic, our vice president, shares a heartwarming story of support from her father, and is putting a call out to every dad with a daughter to offer not only encouragement, but action.
By Jan Frolic
I am always amazed but not surprised by the number of our keynote speakers who credit their fathers with inspiring their success. To be honest, I am also always slightly annoyed….so few mention their mom. However, I am no different. I have a mother who is inspirational, who instilled all of the power in me and stayed up at night crying with and for me as I moved through life. I have that mother.
But when I became President of my own company and colleagues and peers whom I had worked with for several years all of a sudden started to tell me I had an ‘edge’ (which was a nice way of saying ‘you’re a bitch’ now that you’re the boss) it was my father who said these words:
“Consider the mountain….it is beautiful, it is respected, it can endure the changes of time, it has hard edges. Take it as a compliment Janice. You have what it takes. You have confidence, you have chutzpah, you have a sense of people, business and a general savvy beyond your years. You have what most people will never have…being a loving caring person who is intelligent, respected, funny, empathetic, lots of integrity and a great smile. Having an edge does not in any way mean that you are a hard-nosed so and so. It is a positive trait and a poorly worded way of saying that you are truly an exceptional business woman. Consider the beautiful mountain with its hard edge. Love Dad xoxo”
I carried those words in my day timer for about 15 years. It is now taped to my wall so my own children can read it.
With that in mind, I would like to invite fathers like mine to our next two events. I want the fathers who want to be engaged with their daughter’s successes. The ones who believe in their daughter’s potential. The ones that know it’s not going to be the easiest path. The ones who know they have powerful, smart women that they have been given the opportunity and privilege to raise.
I am offering you the ultimate father/daughter date.
On October 27, bring your daughter to our Women of Influence Evening event and listen to Natalie Panek, a space-robot-building rocket scientist and an advocate for girls and women in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics), and tell your daughter that you’ve got her back and she can do anything. Dream big girls…your dad believes in you.