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The Broad Experience

Author: The Broad Experience

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Women’s experiences at work can be challenging, rewarding, and downright ugly – sometimes in the same week. The Broad Experience sparks candid conversations about women, men, careers, and success. We discuss the stuff everyone’s thinking about, but not always talking about. Leaves you feeling more enlightened, less alone. Hosted by journalist Ashley Milne-Tyte.


150 Episodes
You're commuting to work and you start overheating; you're suddenly feeling more anxious about everything; you can't sleep properly, and your colleagues and family are driving you nuts. Many women in their forties start feeling these signs of peri-menopause. And in the UK, some employers are actually moving to support their female staff as they go through this transition. But menopause still remains largely under-discussed, particularly in the youth-obsessed US (why would you admit you're menopausal when the workplace is already sexist and ageist?) In this show we meet a menopause coach and an employee who are both determined to bring more transparency to one of the last workplace taboos.
In this show, originally released in 2016, we look at how class can play out at work. Each of my guests works in a professional setting but both grew up in blue-collar households. Each has had trouble navigating the white-collar workplace and some of its attitudes. We also meet Daniel Laurison, a sociology professor at Swarthmore. He co-authored a study on the 'class ceiling' in Britain. It showed that on average, people in high-status professions who began life in a working-class household earn less than their more privileged peers.
We all need inspiration in the form of successful women. But sometimes the pitches I get about the latest amazing, do-it-all star who's 'killing it' can make me feel tired rather than inspired. Financial Times columnist Pilita Clark is in the same boat. She argues that true equality means not having to be utterly stellar to receive recognition. In this show we discuss her theory that women should be allowed to be as mediocre as any man.
More and more working women are taking care of an ill or aging parent. And while there's plenty of discussion about working mothers and what can be done to support them, there's almost none about working daughters. This episode aims to change that. In it we meet three women who've become caregivers. Liz O'Donnell is the founder of online community Working Daughter; Maria Toropova is part of that community and was just 29 when her mother got sick; and Kate Schutt let her music career slide as she cared for her mother during the last years of her life.
A few years ago I spoke to former Vermont governor Madeleine Kunin for a show called Politics is Power. When I took some of her career advice and wrote it up in a LinkedIn post, it got hundreds of (positive) comments. So when I heard she had a new memoir out about being in her eighties, I couldn't wait to talk to her again. In this show we discuss what it's like to officially be an old woman, and talk about some of the highs and lows of reaching your eighties. We discuss how she's changed as a person and go back in time to her childhood, to parts of her career, and to the time she became single again at 60 after years of marriage. She found love again at 71. Being 85, she says, 'is not what I pictured in my mind.'
This is the second of two shows on women and the coaching industry. This time we find out about one novice coachee's first experience of leadership coaching at work. We talk to management expert Anne Libby and coach trainer Terry Maltbia about why coaching has become so popular in the last couple of decades, especially among women - and why anyone picking a coach should ask questions first. And we meet Christine Whelan, a professor of consumer science and an expert on the self-help industry.
The coaching industry has been exploding over the last several years. Life coaches, wellness coaches, career coaches, executive coaches - it can seem like everyone's hiring a coach for something. And the industry is dominated by women. This is the first of two shows in which we look at why coaching has become so popular and why women in particular want become coaches, and clients.
Right now a lot of us are thinking about our intentions for the new year. Plenty of people have a side project they're hoping to get off the ground - it could be a novel, a new business, or perhaps you just want to learn to paint. Whatever it is, you have to make it happen on top of the rest of your life. Which is where the problems start. In this episode cartoonist, teacher, and author Jessica Abel talks about how to bring focus to a crowded life so you can actually turn your idea into a reality.
In this show we take on a taboo topic - pregnancy loss. Around a fifth of pregnancies end in miscarriage, and many women are dealing with the after effects alone, while they're at work. Some go to work as if nothing had happened. Others (especially outside the US) take some time off. But it can be awkward when they get back. As a culture we're not great at comforting people who've been through a loss of any kind. But we can always learn. In this episode we meet three women from three different countries, each with a different experience of pregnancy loss and the workplace.
So many women stick around in jobs they've had for years, unsure of their next step. In the first part of this episode we look at why it can be so hard to move on even when we know we should. In part two we talk about emotions in the workplace. Is it OK to cry openly (really?) or should we stick with the conventional advice to flee to the bathroom? We learn about gender and the science of tears. And we meet someone who has to watch her tone of voice and expression pretty much all the time for fear of being misunderstood.
Comments (1)

Heather Glenn

Did not like the guest speaker. How about having some compassion?? Next..

Jan 12th
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