Life And Leadership Lessons From Liz Elting

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Liz Elting, Founder and CEO of the Elizabeth Elting Foundation and is a force.

I had the chance to meet with her and my three women business school interns: June Lui, Jessica Flam and Taylor Theis, recently so we could all benefit from her experience as an entrepreneur, mother and philanthropist.

Liz is the founder and former Co-CEO of TransPerfect, the world’s largest translation company, appearing on Forbes’ list of “Richest Self-Made Women” every year since its inception. Her work helped transform her entire industry, and she saw her company through world-shaking global crises, including 9/11 and the 2008 financial crisis, emerging stronger from both. Her experience offers a fresh perspective on how to face the current uncertainty. Instead of shying away from new ideas, Liz suggests getting creative and if you’ve been thinking about starting a new venture, now is still as good of a time as any. 

Liz is focused on always giving back and is the recipient of the 2019 Charles Waldo Haskins Award for business and public service from NYU’s Stern School of Business. And now, making the world better is her full-time gig through her foundation. Her mission there is “to promote progressive and feminist efforts to eradicate systemic barriers, promote public health and education, achieve workplace equality, rise beyond the glass ceiling, and open the doors to economic independence for those society has far too often shut out.”

That may seem like an impossible undertaking for one organization, but one of Liz’s partners with other organizations with the same values to move the ball forward. For instance, she is currently working with NOW, The American Heart Association Circle of Red and NYU Stern Women in Business Women’s Leadership Initiative.

The Halo Fund, part of her foundation,  is a comprehensive COVID-19 response and relief initiative. It aims to identify the areas where her team can have the most significant impact, helping vulnerable and underserved communities, those hit hardest by the pandemic and economic downturn, and the healthcare and essential workers putting their lives on the line for us every day.

In the interview with my interns that you can access here, Liz tells us more about her history, her foundation and, coping during these unsettled times. Here are some of her great tips from that conversation:

1. Follow your passion.

2. Take the time to connect to the people you care about.

3. If you are not being treated respectfully at an organization, do not be afraid to leave.

4. Take care of your health. (Despite her busy schedule, Liz walks five miles a day.)

5. Reengage with activities you love. (Liz is baking a lot these days.)

Thank you Liz, for your commitment to making the world better and for sharing your insights with my young team.