This was an amazing year for Women of FileMaker. Women of FileMaker completed a full redesign of the logo and website with an online directory and blog courtesy of LuminFire. Women of FileMaker also sponsored three people to attend devcon on paid scholarships! We extend a special thanks to all the volunteers and the sponsors that contributed to make it happen.
Dr. Brenda Cimbura hosted and provided a short keynote presentation at the Women of FileMaker Luncheon at DevCon 2017. We got so many positive comments and requests to share it, that we are including the transcript of it here. It seems to have resonated with the group.
Women of FileMaker DevCon 2017 Brenda Cimbura
So have any of you heard of the TED Talk by Brene’ Brown? [applause] She’s really been an influencer in my life in the last couple years talking about what it means to live wholeheartedly.
I think that it’s really appropriate when it comes to a professional development conference to think about what does it mean to live wholeheartedly. So many of us can go through life, and we can actually begin to feel like we’re not worthy of being where we are, and that’s not a real fun feeling. The more women I meet, the more places I go, and the older I get, the more I sense this theme. As I hit my 40s, I want to live wholeheartedly. I want to be as approachable as possible. I want to be friendly. I don’t want to use anything that I obtain, or skills that I have to separate me from people. That has been my mission. To live in the space that I don’t need to compare myself to others. I can just be who I am.
As you go to a professional development conference, it’s really easy to start to think that other people have it all figured out. Especially when it comes to some of this web integration stuff…or that project management stuff…or that other stuff, and it can kind of take a toll on you after days of hearing all of these super intelligent brilliant minds, and you can go “Oh, I hope they don’t find out I don’t know that much yet.”
[02:01] I was thinking about what does it truly mean to build community and to connect, and I think Brene’ Brown has an awesome definition here. It’s something that exists between us. How you can feel it, how you can hear it, and how you can experience the sense of being valued. I hope that’s what you feel when you’re in this space. That there is no judgement here; everybody has a right to be here.
So we’re also going to get something from each other, when we live in this space. I’m a really nice person, and I can accept you right where you’re at. In return, you get the gift of living at peace, and this freedom that’s just so awesome. I hope that we can just permeate the whole culture here with this sense of it is okay to not know everything, but also balance that with it’s okay to be in a place of worth. Because when we are running, we are changing… and change is thrilling and exciting and scary, but there is something beautiful that happens in that space.
[3:10] And so … I went to an incredible session with Sarah Severson. Is she here? Sarah, you’re so smart. 🙂
Sarah comments, “This slide is exactly how I feel most of the time.” [laughter]
She was going through all these wonderful ideas, and the ideas were burning inside my head and heart, and I was thinking about how does this apply to my world…how can I get better? And at one point, I was like, I don’t even want to open my mouth and ask a question because it’s going to sound silly. I have asked so many silly questions in my life, in my pursuit of becoming….and I don’t even know what I’m becoming – it’s very different now than I thought it would be at 20.
[3:58] pause…And I’ve done a whole lot of things that I never thought I would do. Don’t ever say you’re not going to do something; you’ll end up doing it. [laughter]
So I just want to say, if you’re at the pool party, and you hear somebody who might sound a little overwhelmed after listening to the next thing, or the next thing, just tell them, “Hey – Stop it!” Stop comparing yourself to that person or that company. Because you aren’t supposed to be that person or that company. Our job is to increase the pie in the world for FileMaker. Not to try to steal the pie. Does that make sense?
[4:45] So we can focus on adding value, and building people up, and encouraging them, inspiring them to be what they’re supposed to be, and also recognize that nobody belongs to be here more than you. So I’m glad you’re here. We’re grateful you’re here.
So here’s the truth – even though you’re very smart – you can have a lot of credentials behind your name – nobody knows what they’re doing. Nobody. You cannot exist in the tech world, in doing the kind of work that we do, and have 100% certainty that you know what you’re going to be asked to do (because things are changing that fast). Every single week I’ve been asked to do something that I’ve never done before. That’s quite the statement. So how do I overcome that? Instead of saying, “I can’t deal with that, I don’t know how to do that,” I say, “I can keep learning…and I can become what I need to be in order to do this new thing… and I’m really good at “faking it until I make it” (meaning if I give myself the right resource and some time, I can do it … because I am capable of learning “it”, but I may not know immediately how to do “it”).
[5:53] So I want to invite you into this space of community, of growing and learning from each other…asking questions that help you get to where you want to go. Not in comparison to other people, not in comparison to other companies, just you, right here, right now. So as you continue to finish your meal, or eat some dessert … I just want you to think about this, “What am I here for?” because that’s the best question you can ask yourself. And then, “Is there anyone here at this table who can help me get there faster?”
[6:32] That is the whole intention of this community. I wish you great conversations. We will come back up here when we are ready to help you find your next destination spot. So relax, and talk, and enjoy your time together.
Also published on Medium.