Penrod Blog

WITness Success 2019

09/23/19

Each year, countless tech conferences dot the landscape. Some we bookmark as “maybe,” some we pass on, and some, like WITness Success, are a solid “Yes, book those tickets now!”

In 2019, our Penrod crew of four stormed Nashville, Tennessee for WITness Success, the third annual Salesforce Women in Tech conference. It’s a globally organized, community led conference devoted to Salesforce. Not only does it help attendees excel in their careers, it empowers, supports, and invests in women in the tech space.

WITness Success is a strong community that encourages leading women to engage and connect. Throughout the event weekend, engaging, talented speakers shared real-life insights. During inspiring keynotes, breakout sessions, and panels, attendees were encouraged to open up, be vulnerable, and share their experiences as women in tech. After hours, the Penrod team had the opportunity to network with other WITness attendees at a Secret Ohana happy hour, an Allies dinner, and dancing to live music in downtown Nashville.

The prior two Salesforce Women in Tech conferences were memorable, but the third time was definitely the charm for the Penrod ladies. Each day began with them stating their intentions, which helped set the tone for a powerful, transformative weekend of learning and growth. Check out their takeaways:

Nicole Cook, Project Manager: “My favorite conference moment was during the Tap Into Your Innate Superpower session led by Suporia Anthony. Suporia said something that resonated so deeply with me: ‘In every interaction we will either choose to claim value or contribute value.’ The idea that we are making active choices to give without worrying, or to take without worrying in our conversations and interactions with other people is so powerful, because it’s something we have full control over.“

Beth Eckman, Client Engagement Manager: “The two biggest takeaways I had were given to me by Rakia Finley, who led the Courageous Communication session. She said, ‘I need to get so in love with myself that I don’t need permission.’ That was one of the first of many, many times I had to fight back tears at this conference by and for women. How many of us are truly in love with ourselves? Particularly women. And I don’t mean self absorption or even confidence, I mean true self worth.

“At the end of the conference when she spoke for the final time, she made us all stand and say phrases aloud like ‘I am a superhero.’ I am reminded after this conference that we have a community of brilliant, proud and vulnerable women! And we have a lot to teach the wonderful men in our professional and vocational lives, too. What an incredible conference. I’m grateful to have been a part of it.“

Mary Ganchar, Project Manager: “My favorite session was ‘Mind Like Water’ presented by Jason Atwood. He discussed tools to help improve productivity and reduce stress. The one line that clicked for me was “Don’t worry about something until you need to worry about it. Water doesn’t panic before a thrown pebble hits it.” As a busy Project Manager working on multiple projects at once, it’s difficult to not get caught up in the little things. Jason went over the GTD methodology – Getting Things Done – which is a tool I’ll use going forward to help me determine what my daily focus should be.”

Lacey Van Syckle, VP Delivery: “The WITness conference had my heart so full. It was packed with an immense amount of learning, inspiration, bonding, live music, dancing, empowerment, and moments where I looked around and thought, ‘Damn, we are part of such a powerful community!’ Some key moments and quotes that resonated with me were from Rakia Finley. She said, ‘Imagine what a push can do, it can lead to a push, another push, another push and then you’ve made change’ and ‘When I’m in the room everyone is going to know why, but then I realized I needed to know why.’”

Inspiration, Empowerment and Gratitude

The Salesforce Women in Tech conference was a fantastic experience full of inspiration and empowerment that extended far beyond the weekend. That’s why the Penrod ladies want to send a special thank you to the conference organizers and sponsors.

“As we reflect on the inspiration and empowerment from WITness Success, our hearts are so full. Thank you to the sponsors, the leaders of WITness Success, and finally the support we have gotten from Penrod to be surrounded by love and the inspiring Ohana women in Nashville for WIT Conference 2019. We can’t wait for WITness Success 2020!”


Ready to join a community of driven, supportive, authentic women (and men)? We’re hiring!