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Athena @SXSW: Finding Talent That is Right for your Vision

I will be at SXSW next week to talk about our findings from our The Athena Doctrine project. We will talk about how feminine traits are a strategic advantage in today's economy.

For many of the start-ups and entrepreneurs that will be attending the conference, success has as much to do with the people they bring together and how they inspire them as it does with intelligence, the idea or the technology. This applies to investors too by the way, a passionate investor is much more powerful that one with just deep pockets. So how do you find people to work with that share your values and how do you motivate them through passion?

There are many things you need to do, which we'll talk about in our talk, but for now let’s talk about hiring. Candidates may look good on paper and have all the right answers in an interview, but then be totally out of sync with your vision or the culture you are trying to build. So, why is the job description still a list of tasks and preconceived notions about professional and educational requirements?

Somewhere, a Berlin-based start-up, is taking a different path from the traditional resume. Somewhere has curated a group of interesting start-ups, design and advertising agencies from Berlin, London, Copenhagen, Amsterdam and San Francisco (with more cities on the way) who are in the market for new talent, but instead of simply asking candidates to send resumes, each company holds a conversation with the interested party. These conversations ask questions like “when did you go too far, or not far enough?” or “show us a picture that will expand our minds or that is important to your future,” in order to gauge the personality of the candidate, rather than the more traditional analysis of their static skillset.

If a candidate piques the company’s interest then they take the conversation to the next level and bring them in for an interview. Somewhere is flipping the typical recruitment process, first getting to know the personality or the candidate, then going more deeply into the professional accomplishments to see if there is a real fit.

That is what we call Athena leadership. It embraces intuition, a traditionally feminine trait, as the first filter, in place of analytical judgment. During my speech I'll talk about many more entrepreneurs and share some key findings which show that to succeed, to make great companies and to change the world, men and women need to embrace their feminine side.


The Athena Doctrine: Rise of Feminine Values

Sunday March 10 - 3:30-4:30PM

Austin Convention Center, Room 10AB

More info


See you there!