Lesley Jane Seymore sat at the helm of the women’s magazine world for three decades serving as editor-in-chief of some of the most beloved and best known publications including: Marie Claire, Redbook, YM, and More.
Moving around the publishing industry required Lesley to learn some important reinvention skills, but not necessarily the types of skills she would need when she saw her career in publishing come to an abrupt end two years earlier than she had planned.
Lesley shares how she reinvented herself as an entrepreneur, the tools she used, and the challenges she faced in doing so. Since her departure from More, she created Covey Club, where she’s sharing what she’s learned on her own journey to help other women navigate these challenges. Perhaps even more impactfully, Lesley has built a community of “lifelong learners” which she says, “is held together by people who are always trying to better themselves, are willing to learn, to read, and investigate. It’s a certain type of person that attacks the world through educating themselves about the challenges they see.” That’s Covey Club.
A few highlights from our conversation and what you’ll learn from Episode 108:
- How and why Lesley started Covey Club;
- Where to start when you don’t know what you want to do next;
- How to stand out from the competition and get noticed;
- How to get others who’ve been part of your tribe on board, especially when they may have trouble seeing you in an entirely new vocation or career.
The topic of reinvention, which we often talk about on She Said/She Said Podcast is especially timely now given the gigantic jump in unemployment and economic shift we’ve seen — practically overnight. So many people are or will find themselves facing further uncertainty and potentially significant shifts in careers and jobs. For women at mid-career that can be a pretty vulnerable population.
Lesley said, “If you come out of a successful career where you knew everything, one of the things you have to be ready to accept is that you’re going to go back down to the bottom of the rung, and you will not know what you’re doing. You’ll have to be comfortable with that. And when people say, ‘You don’t know what you’re doing,’ you can say, ‘You’re right. I don’t. And I’m going to learn.’” The trick is to not allow self doubt about what we don’t know take over!
Lesley also talks about the impact she hopes to have with this current chapter. “My goal, or through line, is that I’ve wanted to help women. I want to educate them. I want them to feel less alone. And, I want them to know that there is a future for them and that they need to own that future, and own their own life. You know it ain’t over until you say it’s over. I think that’s the most important thing.”
Lesley’s advice for midlife: “Aging is not a disease. It’s not something that you can outrun or take something for. It’s not going to go away. Everybody ages. It’s going to happen. No one has the right to tell you just because you’ve gotten older that you are irrelevant. Some people have allowed themselves to become irrelevant,” but that, she says, is not inevitable.
Check out Covey Club and join Lesley for Coffee and Conversation on the CC website. And, when you’re not listening to She Said/She Said Podcast, be sure to check out Lesley’s podcast “Reinvent Yourself.”
If you’re enjoying She Said/She Said Podcast, please be sure to send me a email at Laura@lauracoxkaplan.net and let me know. And, be sure to log into Itunes and leave a review. Your feedback is greatly appreciated and incredibly helpful, and it helps others find our great content!
I’m grateful for your time! See you next week!
And, please be sure to check out our You Tube channel where you can watch many of our podcast episodes, including my conversation with Lesley!