“Trailblazers are made by women who can see the future…” — JL Pomeroy
JL Pomeroy is an entrepreneur, media executive, producer and super-connector. I am lucky enough to have a mutual friend who introduced me to JL and I’m forever grateful for the amazing influence she has been in my life. She is the co-founder of bridgeLine media, a new venture she created to connect impact investors with purpose-driven storytellers. JL advocates for organizations that support gender equality, climate, and social justice. There is no one I would rather introduce to the next generation of leaders and sharing her wisdom is a real privilege.
Amy Powell: Is there one piece of advice that you wish your 9-year-old self would give you today that would make an impact on your career?
JL Pomeroy: I would tell my 9 year old self that I should always remember that being different is a superpower, and to lean in to things that make me different, and not try to ‘blend in’ or ‘be like others’ around me. To celebrate my uniqueness, to feel confident in who I am, and to tell my self-doubting inner voice to quiet down. Trailblazers are made by women who can see the future and want to light the path ahead for others to join in that vision…be bold, be audacious, be brave.
AP: Was there a time you messed up and felt like you’d failed? How did you bounce back?
JL: Yes, there are many times in my life I’ve messed up and felt like I’ve failed. The way I’ve always been able to bounce back is by processing the situation, really thinking through the underlying reason that caused me to fail and learning from that mistake. If I can feel like there is some sort of silver lining or positive outcome from messing up, it really helps me to feel better about the situation and ‘get back on the horse’ to bounce back and start again.
AP: How did you learn to embrace risk-taking?
JL: I’ve always believed you must take big risks and live outside of your comfort zone if you want to accomplish meaningful things in life. From a young age, I’ve embraced risk-taking because I was lucky enough to believe that if I failed, I could try again. I realize now that I was privileged to have this feeling of a ‘safety net’ that I could try again. Anything that we as adults can do to help young people achieve this feeling that it’s OK to fail, and that someone ‘has your back’ is a wonderful support mechanism for young people just starting out.
AP: What’s the most important leadership lesson you’ve learned and how has it proven invaluable?
JL: The most important leadership lesson I’ve learned is that kindness and empathy are everything. As a leader, one of the most vital attributes is being able to actively listen to your team, and to provide them with a safe space to thrive. Leading with kindness and demonstrating that you are always open to new ideas from your team creates a healthy, dynamic environment, which leads to successful business outcomes. And it has the added benefit of making work a lot more fun!
AP: What is the most fun part of your job?
JL: I love working with creatives to produce films that bring laughter and positive energy into the world. There is NOTHING better than sitting in a theater with moviegoers who are laughing and reacting emotionally to a film I’ve produced. Being on set for shooting days, being in the edit with the director…these are just a few of my favorite things.