Personal Branding That Creates Impact & Becoming an Advocate For Change in the Workforce With Erika Wykes-Sneyd

This week’s episode is one for the books. Ellen sat down with Erika Wykes-Sneyd, the Global Head of Brand Experience & Innovation at PayPal, Venmo and their family of brands. Through her work at corporate giants like Uber, Google, Sony Playstation, Toyota, and now PayPal, she has dedicated her career to building purpose-driven brands that serve the customer, shareholders, and their communities. She shares her insights on how personal branding leads the way for business expansion, how to build a dynamite network that strengthens your career, and the importance of being an advocate for inclusion in the workforce. 

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Favorite Takeaways From This Episode:

In order to see the opportunities you want in your career, you have to hustle and work for them, have a seat at the table and know your worth. When you are moving through life and your career, make sure you listen to both your head and your heart. Don’t ignore your gut feelings. They are right more often than not. 

Success in any career involves being comfortable in chaos. Being comfortable in the ups and downs of any business means you have to understand the motivation of the decision makers you work for and with, and continually think of ways to improve the business. 

 “No” is an answer that we should get used to hearing. Effective strategy says, “no.” This answer is not personal, it simply keeps everyone on a team on the same page, and working with the same vision. Keep asking questions to find the reason behind the “no” answers and what would make them “yes” instead. When you think in systems, viewing your business as a machine, you can figure out how to “grease the wheels,” and make things run more efficiently. 

Brand is more than your business alone. Brand enables you to have a meaning, a role, and own a part of someone’s heart and mind that’s bigger than simply what you do. Business is a constant tension between what you stand for and what you focus on to drive revenue. Brand is what differentiates you from your competition. 

Creating cultural change associated with your brand involves reaching out to the influencers involved in the conversations that you want to be involved in. That is how you connect a cultural conversation to your brand and your business, and then advocate for change. 

As women in the workforce, it’s important to advocate for equity beyond pay. Don’t get hung up on the salary, ask about the total comp package and create space for them to get creative about how they can support you and come back to you with a bigger offer. 

 Making lasting change means linking arms and prioritizing community and collaboration over competition


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