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Stymied by an offhand or misogynistic comment? Carole Wedge, FAIA, has been there. Now the CEO of Boston-based Shepley Bulfinch, Wedge began her career in the 1980s and received plenty of cold shoulders and condescending remarks from those outside her firm unfamiliar with her capabilities and skills. Formulating a response to such shortsightedness can take time, Wedge says in this episode of our podcast, but the process is one step to becoming a leader.
If you haven't discerned by now or read her opinion piece "Speak Up!", Wedge is not one to sit passively when an injustice occurs. Her firm is one example of how change can arise with strong leaders at the helm. In 2000, Shepley Bulfinch identified diversity as a firm value. At that time, the overall staff makeup was 41 percent women, but at the principal and ownership level, it was only 10 percent women. Today, 53 percent of the overall firm are women and 53 percent of the firm’s principals are women.
In this podcast episode, Wedge describes her path to leadership, starting from the mail room, and why she wishes more architects would "stop talking" about revolutionizing the profession and "start implementing." And, yes, she does offer advice for how to respond to ignorant comments and actions on the jobsite and elsewhere.
Episode 32: Shutting Down Sexism and Other Hallmarks of Leadership, featuring Carole Wedge, is also available on SoundCloud and on iTunes.
Wedge references two videos in this podcast:
- Carla Harris' TED Talk "How to Find the Person Who Can Help You Get Ahead at Work"
- A viral YouTube video in which a woman walks through New York with retorts to catcalls
This podcast episode was produced by Wanda Lau, Lauren Honesty, and Daniel Tayag.