Last week, I had the opportunity to sit in on an insightful leadership talk with Shelly Lazarus — Chairman Emeritus of the international advertising, marketing and public relations agency Ogilvy & Mather. It was the first event in Fuqua’s Distinguished Speaker Series for the academic year, and Geneen Auditorium was packed with students, faculty, and staff. We all listened intently to the leadership talk between Shelly Lazarus and Dean Bill Boulding.

I wanted to take the opportunity to share a few takeaways from Shelly Lazarus that struck me:

  • Ask questions. Be inquisitive. More often than not, the questions you ask will drive the team to a better, more thoughtful solution.
  • Ambition will drive your career. Always ask for challenging work and additional opportunities that will make a difference for your client or your organization. The promotions will follow naturally.
  • Be authentic. As a woman ascending the corporate ladder in a time when she had few role models, her only hope was to be authentic. (I would love to read her “25 Random Things”!)
  • Today’s leaders must be resilient. In a recent meeting with CEOs of leading companies, many cited “resilience” as the necessary trait to be a successful leader in the current business environment.
  • Build your brand. In today’s world, companies and individuals must build their brand. The authenticity and good will built will be essential when facing adversity.
  • Great ideas take time to sell. If you truly believe in the idea, keep selling!

Overall, it was a great opportunity to hear from such a successful and dynamic female leader. She shared very personal and tangible insights that gave me a lot to think about as I am in the midst of my second year, debating where I should take my career!

video Watch a video of the Shelly Lazarus talk.