Insights for HR Professionals

Benefits to attract, engage and retain top talent.'s Sheila Marcelo Shares Her ‘Katniss Moment’ With Google

Posted by Patrick Ball on 28 Oct 2014

“Why do I go back to super heroes,” asks Sheila Lirio Marcelo, founder and CEO of, during a recent visit to Google’s corporate headquarters, where she’d share her “Katniss Moment” in a talk on women and leadership.

“Why these super heroes? Because oftentimes super heroes are underestimated because of that inner strength that they have in here.” SHEILAHIRESAPPROVED

So what’s a Katniss Moment? Referencing the lead character from The Hunger Games, Katniss Everdeen, who uses her strength, sharp thinking and archery skills to save her life, Marcelo describes it as the times someone underestimates you based on what they see. And it can happen anywhere – from in line at the grocery store to a road show with investors.

As an employee, we are challenged by Katniss Moments all the time. Especially, Marcelo would add, as women. Learn how she suggests you rise above them – while using them to your advantage. In fact, Marcelo was once mistaken for an admin while trying to get funding for her company. (Her own Katniss Moment).

Watch Sheila talk to the employees at Google—a Workplace Solutions client—about female leaders, diversity vs. parity, overcoming preconceived ideas and embracing differences as strengths.

Here’s an excerpt:

“I am a female leader, and I do consider myself different. There’s nothing wrong with being different. Diversity’s a great thing. But there’s a big debate among female leaders that if you called yourself out as being a female leader it would mean that you’re different. But isn’t the whole purpose of parity to say that you’re not different, that you’re perfectly equal? I don’t think that’s what it means about gender equality, or parity. I think it’s about owning that our differences are our strengths.”

Read more about Diversity, Productivity and Company Culture 

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