Linking Indy Women Presents: #iwillclosethegap
GUEST SPEAKER: Jill Trimmel
After graduating from Ball State, she applied her Bachelor’s degrees in Corporate Management and Human Resource Management to a waitressing position at Applebee’s and as a receptionist in a hair salon. The intent was temporary, before her move to California with her best friend, Terra.
Terra enjoyed California. Jill moved back to Muncie for her now-husband, Paul, who was finishing his Bachelor’s at Ball State. Understanding it was time to start her career, and with the encouragement of friends, she joined Enterprise Rent-A-Car, a company that touted a true Enterprise perspective, learning all aspects of leading a profitable operation while focusing on service.
Promotion at Enterprise was based on measurable performance, or that is what she thought. Competition was fierce. The company had a reputation for hiring athletes. Jill also noted few women maintained the performance needed for advancement, and of those who did, very few were promoted on the first attempts. Jill quickly learned the hours and effort needed to advance meant drinks after 12 hour days and golf lessons on the weekends. Even after being one of the least-tenured females promoted to leadership, her branch garnered “Branch of the Year” based on profitability and customer experience results.
After one year, Jill moved on from Enterprise after being recruited by Progressive Insurance, and transitioned to what would be a long ride in leadership in the insurance industry. Progressive recognized her talent and promoted her quickly.
Shortly after, Jill was at their annual leadership conference. Among the meetings was a free day; you pick – a day at the spa or golf. Jill golfed. The only woman playing on the course, she was first to tee off in front of seven men, including the Head of State. Taking a deep breath and realizing there was no place to go but forward, she nailed it – 200 yards! As they all headed back to the “men’s tee,” Jill realized her core was still trembling and at the same time felt herself becoming stronger.
Jill pressed through her career often the only woman at the table and, the first woman at the table. Sometimes realizing the only progress was the men at that table knowing where the women’s bathroom was located relative to the boardroom. That was change, right?
Her success continued, as she led a firm within the industry to expansive growth and margins. Jill was well positioned to enjoy the result of her ridiculous hours and endless travel; with a strong team in place and a lucrative contract. Then, something was said and she could not or chose not to release it.
Shortly after, a position sparked her interest – she returned the recruiter’s message. The thought of working in Manhattan’s Financial District seemed appealing in and of its self.
Finalizing an employment agreement with a large international company was complex. Knowing nearly everyone thought she was crazy to move on, Jill knew the real risk…the Australian news rumored the company to sell a quarter of their U.S. portfolio. Which they did – she was released.
In the summer of 2018, Jill took two months off with her family and friends, while keeping her options open by fielding calls and listening to the opportunities. After the self-prescribed time to breathe, she relented to a consulting stint. Sitting in a room for twelve hours, you got it, the only woman… she asked herself:
“What impact have I made after twenty years, if I am still the only women in the room?”
Her journey to understand where women stand and what she could do to progress the position for all women began!
Jill was bewildered by her findings, and more so how little was being done and how few wanted to talk about action. She committed to ongoing research; studies, books, articles, opinions, policies, etc. on Equal Pay.
As her understanding developed, she created #iwillclosethegap. A platform to transform where women stand.
7:30am Coffee & Bagels!
8:00 Welcome Guest Speaker, Jill Trimmel
8:30 Q & A
9:00 See You Next Time!
About Linking Indy Women
Today, Linking Indy Women has over 900 women who have joined the journey. I look forward to meeting you and hearing your inspiring story.