“What could George Clooney do for my career?”
Yesterday, I met the most amazing woman.
I’m currently at the Women in Automotive conference in Orlando, where I gave a keynote on salary negotiation. The auto industry is sorely lacking women, who account for a mere 16% of all workers in the industry.
But then there’s Lisa Copeland.
Lisa wears a gold nameplate, and she clearly subscribes to the “higher the hair, the closer to God” school of thought. Originally from Dallas, Lisa started in the auto industry in the ’80s and unsurprisingly, all of her co-workers were men, and they were less than friendly. They even went so far as to put a baby alligator on her desk.
But it was Lisa who would have the last laugh, as she would go on to become a force in the automotive world.
Lisa, the owner of one of the first FIAT dealerships in America, challenged the organization, setting ambitious goals for her team, goals no one thought they could reach. Her one condition was that if they did, Fiat Chairman Sergio Marchionne would visit her dealership.
In just four weeks, Lisa and her team became the first FIAT retailer to break the record of selling more than one hundred new FIAT 500’s.
When they asked Lisa if instead of meeting with Sergio, would she prefer being flown to Italy to have dinner with FIAT spokesperson George Clooney, she declined. Her reasoning? “What could George Clooney do for my career?”
She impressed Sergio so much that he gifted her a diamond watch as well as a hot pink custom FIAT. Not only that, when she wanted to open up a new dealership and needed a multi-million dollar loan, guess who gave it to her?
Now go get paid.