Chardonnay in the Conference Room Doesn’t Cut it

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Chardonnay in the Conference Room Doesn’t Cut it.
The Hypocrisy Of Women’s Initiative Programs.

When you take a hard look at corporate support for women’s initiative programs what you see is not always what you get.

A client recently called me up very frustrated. “I am getting push back on our women’s event. They don’t want to spend the money. I had no trouble getting $600 a head for the guys client golf outing but I have to beg for a fraction of that for my women’s program funding even when I invite clients.”

I cannot tell you how many times I have heard a variation on this conversation. Companies love to tout what they do to support women, but when it comes to putting bucks behind the programs the story is very different. “I would rather curl up in a ball and stay home watching TV shows I hate than listen to another speaker talk about work life balance while I drink mediocre wine,” said a prominent female attorney.

Women want support so they can advance their careers but they want it to be meaningful and engaging. There must be an interaction that leads to better relationships and more business opportunities. Unfortunately, women tend to be better at the former than they are at the latter. A passive strategy doesn’t work and does not motivate or challenge women to reach up and break out of their customary comfort zone.

At the risk of tooting our own horn, we need more programs like the PokerDivas Initiative. PokerDivas provides an interactive activity that not only speaks to the skills which help women succeed in business but allows them to literally play out in real time, how it feels to practice those skills of being assertive, reading an opponent, and managing a bully. In addition to learning the strategies of the game extending to life and business, participants walk away knowing how to play Poker. The game is an extremely prevalent business networking activity especially in the financial, legal, technology and entertainment arena, and if women can participate, they will have access to a network that they were previously excluded from.

Recently, we proposed a PokerDivas program to a financial services client, who responded that management would not approve the program because it would promote gambling. (There is no gambling at a PokerDivas event.) Imagine my “surprise” when two weeks later I attended a 300- person poker charity event in New York City where that very same firm spent $20,000 sponsoring two tables. All the seats were taken by men. I guess they wanted to keep their boys club intact.

The Hypocrisy is Rampant.

It would be great to say that all the focus on women’s initiatives is helping but there is a long way to go. Women need to be let into the game, and chardonnay in the conference room is not going to cut it.

We would love to hear about your successes and challenges with your company’s Women’s Initiative programs. Or if you would like some assistance developing one, please reach out at

If you want to learn more about how poker strategy can help you be bold, negotiate effectively and maximize your professional wins, check out the Pokerdivas Program for your next Teambuilding, Sales Meeting or Women’s Initiative Program. Call 646-450-1905 or email

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Don’t forget to book your Women’s Initiative Programs NOW (Men are welcome too) and get your preferred date. Your team will learn assertiveness, leadership, and negotiating skills through the fun and excitement of poker. It’s not about gambling — it’s about learning to be bold and sharpening business skills in a fun and interactive environment. Poker is a great equalizer and encourages networking between all levels of the organization.

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Contact us or book your event today and we will send you a complimentary copy of Poker Woman: How to Win in Love, Life and Business Using the Principles of Poker. Know a friend or business colleague who could benefit from some serious negotiating skills? Take advantage of our Referral Program. Contact us at 646-450-1905 or via email to book your event!

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