It was a packed house on the 44th Floor of New York City’s Hearst Tower this afternoon for Marie Claire‘s annual Power Women lunch, honoring 50 members of the “New Guard” — also known as the “most connected women in America.” Natalie Morales, Girls actress Allison Williams (daughter of Brian Williams) and Marie Claire‘s Nina Garcia were just a few of the famous faces in the crowd. Speakers included Harvard associate professor Amy Cuddy (of Ted Talks fame), who discussed the impact of body language when it comes to getting ahead in life and in your career. The gist was to exude confidence by taking up space (arms outstretched, head held high) rather than striking a cowering pose (crossed arms or legs). And if this feels unnatural, she said, “Fake it until you [not make it, but rather] become it.” For women especially, Cuddy said, “Having power makes you more present.”
Next, a panel consisting of Morales, Williams, Sallie Krawcheck (CEO of 85 Broads, a network of Wall Street women) and Sophia Amoruso (CEO of fashion ecommerce site Nasty Gal) discussed leveraging your connections. Morales stressed the importance of networking. When I met her before the panel, Morales told me it’s much easier for women to break into media (especially the digital realm) now than when she was getting started. And in fact, she was sidetracked doing a stint in banking before she was able to pursue her true passion of journalism.
Among those honored this year by Marie Claire were Emily Gannett, co-founder and president of IRL Productions, the go-to gal when The Wall Street Journal, the creators of Angry Birds or top consumer brands want a party planned; and Angela Rye, a former senior adviser on Capitol Hill who now runs Principal Impact Strategies, which helps advance leaders in the D.C. area via forums, workshops and networking events.