The Women’s Leadership Podcast is now LIVE!

PODCAST (1) Big news here!

The Gaia Project for Women’s Leadership now has its own podcast!

The Women’s Leadership Podcast is hosted by Elizabeth, and features advice, information and interviews covering all aspects of women’s leadership.

The first three episodes are now available right here on iTunes.

If you love the podcast, please do review us on iTunes, subscribe to the podcast, and share it with anyone you know who might be interested!

And if you’d like to see a topic covered on a future podcast, just email us at

We hope you enjoy The Women’s Leadership Podcast!

Stepping Into the Light

MakersLast week, I spoke at the most significant event to date of my career.

As you may know, MAKERS is an AOL-led conference which honors women who make the world.

This year, honorees included Gloria Steinem, Sheryl Sandberg, Annie Leibovitz, America Ferrara, Abby Wambach, Caitlyn Jenner, Katie Couric, Halle Berry, and many other extraordinary women.

I was invited to speak at the wrap-up MAKERS event for Verizon/AOL, wherein I presented to the 60 most powerful women at Verizon/AOL on the topic of leading change as women leaders in a 24/7 world.

As you might imagine, stepping into an arena this big, with these kind of names, requires some serious preparation.

And while I’ve gotten used to what it takes to grow one’s profile at a highly accelerated pace in the last few years, I still needed more preparation for this event than I’ve needed for any other.

So what does it take to step into the light of an event like this?

Here’s a few things that I learned about what you need to do to get ready for a huge professional opportunity like this.

Preparation is everything.

I spent weeks getting ready for this event. Weeks. I read new books on public speaking (more on that below), framed out the content of my talk, had numerous conference calls with the folks at Verizon/AOL about where my talk would fit into their programming, and practiced my speech at least a dozen times.

Why does preparation matter so much? Because you never know what might happen on the day of an event like this.

In my case, the program was running long, and I was asked at the last second by one of my contacts at Verizon if I could try to get them back on schedule. Because of preparation, I knew exactly what to cut from my speech to get her where she needed to go, and pulled it off without a hitch.

Know what you don’t know.

Even though I speak in public on topics of women’s leadership at least once a month, I knew that I might need some extra help on this one.

Fortunately, I had an easy source to turn to for advice: a book written by Michael Port, entitled Steal the Show.

In Steal the Show, Michael shares all his best public speaking tips and all his best preparatory advice for a high-profile appearance.

And while some of what he shares in the book has always come naturally to me, much of his advice provoked me to prepare and plan my speech in new and different ways.

When you know what you don’t know, you’re able to fill the gaps. And then, your weaknesses can be converted into strengths as well.

Trust your gut, and don’t be afraid to change on the fly in response.

Two days before the MAKERS event itself, something in my speech didn’t feel right. I couldn’t put my finger on it, but I knew something wasn’t resonating as I’d hoped.

I reached out to several high-profile entrepreneurial friends, gave them a rough outline of my speech, and asked for feedback.

Result? The day before the program, I scrapped the organization of my original speech and rearranged the content entirely.

Now while that may sound scary, my intuitive alarm bells knew that if I didn’t pay attention, I wouldn’t resonate with the audience. Something needed to be fixed to get the result I wanted and share the best of my knowledge with this amazing audience.

Despite this last minute shift– or perhaps because of it– my final speech was met with a standing ovation and rave reviews from everyone in the room. The panelist immediately after me took the stage and said “we’ve seen some great things in the last few days, but Elizabeth was, to me, the home run.”

Which leads me to the final thing I learned from this event.

Accept praise and compliments with grace.

This is a reminder to all of us: when we’ve succeeded and performed well at a new level we’ve never hit before, it’s important to not downplay our hard work and achievement.

I was thrilled to hear the feedback I received on my speech. I also accepted the compliments with grace and without minimizing them.

You, like me, work hard for your success. The next time you hit a pinnacle, remember: no one got you there but you. Bask in it. You’re worth it.

With gratitude for all the ways in which you step into the light,






Announcing The Gaia Project for Women’s Leadership!

Stocksy_txpf24b4d3aJsZ000_Medium_718139I’m thrilled to announce the upcoming beta program, running for four weeks this October, of my new endeavor: The Gaia Project for Women’s Leadership.

The Next Generation of Women Leaders Will Change the Working World Forever.

Are You Ready to be One of Them?

For generations, a masculine model of leadership— one that values overwork, 24/7 engagement and Machiavellian models of domination and control— has led the corporate world.

As more and more women take control of corporations and small businesses, however, the need for a new model of leadership is emerging— one that mirrors our values and propels us to new level of success as individuals and as women.

As role models and game changers of women’s leadership, today’s generation of women executives know that a new skill set— one that mirrors our internal development as leaders and prepares us to shift the working world to the benefit of women everywhere— is absolutely required.

The Gaia Project for Women’s Leadership is a new endeavor helmed by Elizabeth Cronise McLaughlin that will empower you, as a key member of the next generation of women leaders, to change your life and your work forever so that it permanently aligns with your values, and that will propel us all toward a new model of women’s leadership for years to come.

The Gaia Project for Women’s Leadership kicks off with a beta program running for four weeks in October 2015, of which you are invited to be a part.

Here’s what the Beta Program entails:

  • The Program kicks off with an opening group coaching call on Thursday October 1 at 3 p.m. ET.
  • Thereafter, every week for four weeks, we will focus on one critical area of Women’s Leadership.
  • Each Monday of the program, you’ll receive worksheets and inquiry points for that week’s topic.
  • Each Thursday of the program, we’ll convene for a ninety-minute group coaching call at 3 p.m. to cover that week’s material, answer questions, and share successes, with plenty of time for Q&A.
  • All coaching calls will be recorded in case you need to miss a week, or want to listen in later.
  • You’ll get access to a private Facebook group where we’ll discuss our progress, our goals and our plans for the future.
  • Along the way, we’ll have some special guests and surprise bonuses for you on today’s hottest topics in Women’s Leadership.
  • And as a bonus, you’ll also receive a free 45 minute private coaching call with Elizabeth to address any individual challenges you might be facing as a leader and/or in your career (a $500 value).

So why this program, and why now?

Elizabeth Cronise McLaughlin is a storied Executive Coach and serial entrepreneur who has dedicated her life and career to uplifting women in the workplace. Elizabeth founded the Gaia Project for Women’s Leadership as a way to propel forward women executives who want to change their lives, their work and their world for the better as the next generation of women leaders.

Here’s what others have said about her:

“A celebrated career coach” and “fearless entrepreneur.” -Ivanka Trump

“Elizabeth Cronise McLaughlin knows what it’s like to be a powerful woman in the workforce, [as well as] the financial and emotional challenges.” -HuffPost Live

“Elizabeth McLaughlin . . . is helping women from all walks of life . . . .” -Ali Brown

As an ex-Wall Street lawyer, the CEO of her own consulting firm and the executive Director of 40 Percent and Rising, an organization dedicated to primary breadwinner women, Elizabeth has faced down the masculine model of leadership for her entire career. She believes that empowered, enlightened women have an incredible opportunity at this critical juncture in history to effect change that benefits all of us, by lifting up other women, changing policies and workplace culture, and rising to new heights of success.

The Gaia Project for Women’s Leadership is designed to get you, and all of us, to that place.

Schedule and Topics for Beta Program

Here’s what the Beta Program entails:

Kickoff Call: Thursday October 1 at 3 p.m. ET

Week 1: You as a Leader: Tackling Your Skills, Strengths and Weaknesses

Monday 10/5: Weekly Email with Worksheets and Thought Points

Thursday 10/8: 3 p.m. EDT weekly group coaching call

Week 2: Creating Your Team: Allies, Alchemy and Assets

Monday 10/12: Weekly Email with Worksheets and Thought Points

Thursday 10/15: 3 p.m. EDT weekly group coaching call

Week 3: Productivity, Purpose and Communicating Your Goals

Monday 10/19: Weekly Email with Worksheets and Thought Points

Thursday 10/22: 3 p.m. EDT weekly group coaching call

Week 4: Leading Change in Your Workplace and the World

Monday 10/26: Weekly Email with Worksheets and Thought Points

Thursday 10/29: 3 p.m. EDT weekly group coaching call and final wind-up

What results can I expect?

By the end of the program:

  • You’ll have an integral understanding of how to excel as a leader, and what makes your leadership unique.
  • You’ll know how to communicate effectively to get the results you want from everyone you work with, and how to give constructive criticism when you don’t.
  • You’ll have developed your leadership style, and know how to project it with confidence.
  • You’ll have all the skills you need to build a great team that supports you and is loyal to your goals.
  • You’ll be more productive and on purpose in your work than ever before, and your work and world will be more easeful as a result.
  • You’ll know how to work for change in your workplace and in the world for the betterment of women everywhere.

The group coaching calls, materials and bonuses included in this program are valued at over $3000.

As the first program offered by the Gaia Project for Women’s Leadership, however, this Beta Project is available for just $99.

Are you ready to become the leader you are meant to be?

Registration is now closed.

For more information on upcoming offerings, make sure you’re on the mailing list by subscribing in the box on the home page.

Got questions? Just contact us here.

How to Resolve Workplace Conflict in Four Easy Steps

shutterstock_148465586Lately, I’ve been working with a number of clients who are struggling mightily with workplace conflict.

And as we all know, conflict in the workplace makes our jobs harder, ruins our morale and impacts our productivity dramatically.

If you’ve got conflict on the team you manage, or conflict with a co-worker, chances are good that you’ve got challenges in your communication style that are contributing to that conflict.

So how can you make your workplace more easeful by creating a conflict-free environment?

Read on.

In recent months, I’ve been exploring quite a bit with both my private and corporate clients something called Non-Violent Communication.

This communication style, pioneered by Marshall Rosenberg, has been everywhere from racially charged neighborhoods in conflicts with police to the highest levels of government as a means to resolve conflict, eliminate anger, and reach agreement and understanding.

So how does it work?

Rosenberg’s work suggests that there are four steps to resolving conflict and reaching a place of understanding in any conversation. They go like this:

1) Start with your observations.

In any conversation that is potentially conflicted, start by clearly expressing how “I am”– and do it without blaming or criticizing. For example, when dealing with a co-worker who belittles his assistant, one way to start might be to say the following:

“When I see you yelling at your assistant outside my office door . . . ”

I is the most important word in this sentence. Starting with “when you yell at your secretary . . .” is more confrontational.

2) Next, state your feelings.

Here, you must critically focus on your emotions or feelings rather than your thoughts. So continuing on with the above example, you might say:

“When I see you yelling at your assistant outside my office door, I feel anxious and stressed out . . .”

Note how different this is from, for instance, “You need to stop yelling at your assistant!”

3) Then, express your needs or values.

This is where it can get tricky, because the key to communicating effectively here is expressing what you need or value that you are not getting as a result of the conflict. It is important that rather than stating a preference, you instead state your needs and values explicitly.

So, again continuing with the above example:

“When I see you yelling at your assistant outside my office door, I feel anxious and stressed out, because I value a peaceful, respectful workplace.”

4) Lastly, state your request.

The final step in the non-violent communication process is clearing requesting something that would shift your experience, without demanding it.

So, our example would wind up as follows:

“When I see you yelling at your assistant outside my office door, I feel anxious and stressed out, because I value a peaceful, respectful workplace. Would you be willing to communicate with your assistant without yelling?”

As you might imagine, the results you would get from applying this process would be very different from something that went along these lines.

“You need to stop yelling at your assistant! You’re making everyone miserable! You need to cut it out, or I’m going to report you!”

Consider the different potential outcomes. Obviously, one is more likely to get a positive response than the other.

One last point on this style of communication: you can also use it when receiving information about how you are, without hearing blame or criticism. How might that work?

Let’s take another example: your co-worker is upset that you cut her off in a meeting. After the meeting, she storms into your office and says: “I can’t believe you did that! I had a really important point to make and you didn’t even let me finish! And now our boss thinks I didn’t have anything to contribute!”

Using the strategies of non-violent communication, you would respond as follows:

“So when you heard me interrupt you, you felt devalued and angry, because you value having your ideas heard in our meetings. Do I have that right?”


“Would you like me to be more patient and not interrupt you in the future?”

“Yes.” (exhale.) “That would be great. Thanks for understanding.”

As you can see, this is way better than responding to your colleague’s upset with something like “Stop being so sensitive!” (LOL.)

Bonus hint: these four steps apply not only at work, but not in life. Try them the next time you’re arguing with a partner. Defusing conflict through non-violent communication can benefit your work environment, your home life and even your parenting.

In the comments, I want to hear from you: how have strategies like these impacted your life for the better?

Wishing you a productive, conflict-free week!

All the best,


PS. Do you struggle with workplace conflict? I can help. Click here to set up a free consultation and learn more about what private coaching can do for you.