Hello Inner Circle readers!

I’m so excited to share that the inaugural Girls’ Lounge @ Shoptalk was a huge success! At last count about 500 women (and men!) walked through the doors of the Girls’ Lounge @ Shoptalk, and by all accounts everyone enjoyed their experience!

Besides some fun activations (e.g., free professional headshots) as well as just being a fun and comfortable place to hang out, the Girls’ Lounge @ Shoptalk offered four panels discussing important, timely issues such as “The Power of Women in Retail,” “Why it’s Important for Women to Engage Male Allies,” “EQ, AI and the Female Consumer,” and the “State of the Retail Industry.”

The Power of Women in Retail panel offered some great inspiration from speakers like Tina Sharkey, co-founder of Brandless; Rachel Drori, founder of Daily Harvest; Marisa Bertha, director of business development and 7-ventures at 7-Eleven; and Sophie Miller, head of shopping partnerships, Google AR/VR.

As this Adweek article described, the women discussed everything from not having it all as a woman to everything they’ve learned in their careers about retail and e-commerce. Shelley Zalis, CEO of The Female Quotient, acted as the panel’s moderator. (The Female Quotient, along with the Network of Executive Women, were co-sponsors of the Girls’ Lounge @ Shoptalk.)

Want to check out what was discussed? Check out this Facebook post to view the Power Women in Retail panel in its entirety.

The Girls’ Lounge wasn’t the only place women were highlighted at Shoptalk. The fast-growing event did a great job representing women throughout the conference. In its conference guide, Shoptalk noted that it’s “acutely aware of the need to ensure that the perspectives of women leaders are heard on stage and consider it one of its most critical responsibilities.” The conference featured more than 100 women speakers. In 2017, 30 percent of Shoptalk speakers were women; that percentage increased to one-third in 2018.

Bravo Shoptalk! And bravo to the Girls’ Lounge @ Shoptalk!

Here’s to next year!

Melissa Campanelli
Women in Retail Leadership Circle

Pictured above in the Girls’ Lounge @ Shoptalk: Sarah Alter, CEO, Network of Executive Women;  Julie Janckila, Director of Corporate Partnerships, Network of Executive Women; Jennifer DiPasquale, Executive Vice President, Total Retail, and Co-Founder, Women in Retail Leadership Circle; Simran Rekhi Aggarwal, Founder and President, Shoptalk; Melissa Campanelli, Co-Founder, Women in Retail Leadership Circle, and Editor-in-Chief, Total Retail; and Shelley Zalis, CEO, The Female Quotient.