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Karen Edwards Blogger

The New and Improved ÖWLI 2017

Posted by Karen Edwards | January 26, 2017

Happy New Year!

Welcome to a new year and to the start of an exciting year of growth within our initiative. It has​ been beyond exciting to watch the seed of the idea of supporting women in the O&P profession grow into a reality that has reached so many people. Thank you all for your participation, support an​​d your feedback!

Speaking of feedback, thank you to all of you who completed our recent survey. Your responses and comments are invaluable in helping us provide the most useful and targeted programs. Your responses told us the following:

  • 94% say our initiative is educational and relevant
  • Over half read our blog and participate in our webinars
  • 87% say our blog is educational and relevant
  • 89% say our webinars are educational and relevant
  • 89% follow us on Facebook
  • 100% say support of women is important to the future of O&P
  • 83% feel the profession currently supports women at least somewhat
  • While almost 50% say there is at least a little more discussion about equality within their workplace since ÖWLI began, 47% say that still isn't the case
  • 100% agree that AAOP and AOPA should offer at least some type of education on gender equality or gender equitable business practices
  • 83% say Corporate Social Responsibility is important in their workplace or something they are interested in implementing
  • Leadership Development, Career Development and Networking are your top three areas of educational interest
  • 100% are interested in attending a local ÖWLI event

Your feedback confirms that women's leadership education and support are still wanted and needed in our profession and that our educational methods are useful overall. They also tell us there is some room for improvement, and WE HEAR YOU! To improve this initiative, we have formed a Steering Committee to provide more focused education and a broader range of input. We are researching new topics, new speakers and new forms of education that will empower your career and our profession. We are continually looking for ways to make ÖWLI more actionable and personally relevant to you.

Additionally, you will see more contributors to our blog, providing a more varied and expansive list of topics and perspectives. We plan to continue our "Profile of Women in O&P Leadership" series each quarter, and we have received several nominees. Please continue to nominate those leaders whom you think should be recognized!

We are also thrilled to once again offer the Össur Women's Leadership Conference. Your survey feedback regarding the location was split almost evenly across several city options (primarily Chicago, Raleigh and Orlando). It was also expressed that cost is an important concern. For that reason, we have chosen to host it once again in our Orlando facility which will allow us to offer the conference at the lowest cost and, subsequently, to cover the cost of extras like food, special events, and a shuttle between the airport, hotel and conference location while still providing you the most outstanding speakers possible. We will keep you updated as we get more details in place, but, for now, mark your calendars now for Sept. 28-30.

One new focus for improvement this year is ÖWLI on social media. We have closed our lesser followed sites on Twitter and Linked-In and are focusing on building our presence on Facebook. Please join us on our Facebook page titled "Össur Women's Leadership Initiative." Please use this page to share articles, thoughts, ideas, leadership opportunities, etc. FYI, we are carefully monitoring who requests membership to this page to avoid (and immediately block) those unaffiliated with O&P.

Please continue to provide us with ideas, feedback and suggestions for topics, speakers, and forms of support or education we can add. Let us know what your challenges are, what topics you would like education on, how our initiative can help and how we can all support and sponsor each other so that we reach leadership roles. WE ARE LISTENING! As our quote of the month says, we hope this initiative has planted a seed that will make this profession not only equitable, but strong and sustainable for the future.

MARK YOUR CALENDARS: Reserve a spot on your schedule for the following upcoming ÖWLI events…

Mar. 10, 2017, 12-1pm EST:
ÖWLI Webinar Series: Contagious Confidence. Our ÖWLI Webinar Series for 2017 is privileged to present international speaker and author Monica Wofford who will kick off with our 2017 webinar series with her presentation of "Contagious Confidence." A lack of self-confidence can rob you of objectivity, good decision making, and quality work, making you spend more time worrying about what others think about your work than doing your work. The Contagious Confidence webinar will not only keep you from taking what others do personally, but it will give you proven techniques to keep from riding the downward spiral to doom and gloom, and build your own self-worth and self-respect. Monica is a leadership development expert who writes, speaks, trains, coaches and consults on how to become a better leader in life and work. She is the author of six books including "Contagious Leadership" and "Make Difficult People Disappear."

Sept. 28-30, 2017:
Össur Women's Leadership Conference, Orlando, FL. More details and sign up info to come!

Best wishes for an amazing month,

Karen Edwards
Director, Össur Women's Leadership Initiative

ÖWLI Quote of the Month: "Someone's sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago." -- Warren Buffett, American business magnate

Talk to us!! Your feedback is welcomed and encouraged! Please let us know what you think of our initiative, share your ideas, share your victories, or just say "hi" by emailing us at ÖWLI@Ö

And join the ÖWLI Facebook Group today!