In her own words: Girlmade’s Lauren Klein
Name/Title/Company: Lauren Klein, owner/chief inspiration officer, Girlmade
Number of years with company: I bought LLC in January 2015
Number of years in the profession: 20-plus in management consulting and training
Education: B.A. Michigan State University
Last book read: The Art of Social Media: Power Tips for Power Users
Favorite movie: The Well Digger’s Daughter
Favorite musical group or genre: Favorite song: The Girl From Ipanema
Spouse, kids or pets: Bird named Cuzco. Married with two teenage daughters.
Northern Nevada Business Weekly: Tell us about your company and the duties of your position.
Lauren Klein: Girlmade is a female startup accelerator program with one mission: to help women play big. Plus, we lead Girl Empire (for middle school and high school girls), we consult, mentor and train. We provide a home base and launch pad for female entrepreneurs to change the world. I also run a few networking programs called BREKKIE for Bosses, serve as a panelist or judge in various accelerator programs, run workshops for female entrepreneurs, social business, social media, and social leadership. In August, I’m facilitating an event in Reno that provides an opportunity for young women to hear from entrepreneurial leaders, learn about the startup scene and receive guidance on building female networks. These World Learning Students will be invited to network at the private, all-female entrepreneurial business event to learn how to generate and communicate entrepreneurial ideas, build confidence and present themselves in a business environment.
NNBW: How did you prepare for this profession?
Klein: I’ve been working in management consulting for over 20 years. Most recently, I’ve been consulting on social business strategies and leadership coaching.
NNBW: Is there anything that you do differently than other organizations developing women in leadership?
Klein: Yes. We focus exclusively on female business acumen skill development.
NNBW: What do you enjoy most about working in your field?
Klein: Lifting people up is what I enjoy the most. Watching them take flight.
NNBW: What is the most challenging part about your job?
Klein: Inherent gender bias in people and processes is hard to unwind.
NNBW: What advice would you give anyone who wants to get in your profession?
Klein: Learn about inherent bias. Find a coach. Practice new behaviors to allow you to work with gender parity.
NNBW: Your mission is to “help women play big.” What is the most important aspect about “playing big” that young women need to understand?
Klein: Achieving financial independence is possible when you work in your gift zone.
NNBW: What was your first job?
Klein: Organizing events when I was a teenager
NNBW: What are your hobbies?
Klein: Journaling, reading and cooking.
NNBW: How do you spend your time away from work?
Klein: I spend time with my family on vacation.
NNBW: Do you have a favorite vacation spot?
Klein: Anywhere without an Internet connection or wireless device. I find serenity and healthy distance when I take on a digital cleanse and detox.
NNBW: If you had one moment in time to cherish for the rest of your life either professionally or personally what would it be and why?
Klein: Watching my daughter on stage in NYC at the Intrepid Air & Space Museum using audience interaction techniques while pitching to win the national Samsung Solve for Tomorrow challenge on stage.
NNBW: Last concert or sporting event attended?
Klein: My daughter’s solo violin ensemble was incredible this year.
NNBW: What did you dream of becoming as a kid?
Klein: Archeaology and Education.
NNBW: If you had enough money to retire right now, would you?
Klein: Yes from one of my businesses to focus on another business.
NNBW: Why did you choose a career in northern Nevada?
Klein: My husband’s company relocated our family to northern Nevada.
NNBW: What do you like about living/working here?
Klein: Proximity to Silicon Valley and San Francisco.
Heather Ashbridge, who started with Nevada State Development Corporation in 2008, previously served in several roles with the organization, including assistant vice president and loan officer. She is based in NSDC’s Reno office.