ATHENA Valley of the Sun presents Katharine Halpin, whose role on the AVOS Leadership Team is to lead the ATHENA Women in Technology program. We are looking for senior women, C-level women, executive women in Arizona that are going to help transform our world.
Katharine has continually overcome obstacles in her life by turning them into opportunities. She is now a management consultant helping leadership teams build team and organizational-wide alignment. Katherine loves facilitating and working with Fortune 500 companies, middle-market companies, and small businesses for the past 25 years. “I love it; I haven’t worked a day in 25 years.
After doing all the work on myself and getting rid of all that baggage that I brought with me from Mississippi, I practiced self leadership, self alignment, and management.”
Katharine had to grow up fast. She demonstrated leadership in her home and was an advocate for her younger siblings at a very early age. Growing up in Mississippi, Katharine faced dysfunctional family dynamics and career limitations since there were so few women professionals in her little town, Vicksburg, MS. She became a CPA because her dad was a CPA and put her to work in his firm at the age of 9. By the time she turned 15 years, she was a key player in his CPA firm. In 1995, she formed her firm, The Halpin Companies, to fill a void she saw everyday in her career. In one of the companies she worked for, part of management training was, “Don’t be nice to people, be rude to them, be caustic.” “That is where I developed my passion. Leaders are typically only focused on financial and legal aspects of growing their companies instead of the people aspects”.
“Part of the secret sauce of the Halpin Companies and why I’ve been able so successful for these 25 years, is that I make every team, every time they meet with me, start their meetings with acknowledgements to celebrate the successes. It is easier to build on what IS working instead of beating ourselves up on what’s not working. It’s a basic human need, right above food, shelter, and safety, to feel appreciated, to feel valued, and to feel like we’re part of something bigger than ourselves. By doing these acknowledgments it helps everybody get their needs met and, most importantly, help to identify what people are good at, so you can give them more of those kinds of projects and fewer of those they aren’t good at.”
Katharine was the Keynote Speaker at the AVOS Fall Conference, How Women Lead, September 26, 2019. Katharine shared about being resilient enough to advocate fiercely. Katharine is passionate about people and the work she does and said AVOS was a perfect platform to share her excitement
“It was an honor and a privilege for me to be the keynote. I just love all the ATHENA Principles. I talked about What does it take to be resilient enough to Advocate Fiercely. That’s my personal mission statement. I’m so passionate and enthusiastic about so many topics, so it was just perfect… I knew many women in the audience from being in Phoenix all these years; it was a great experience. The only thing I wished for was to have a magic wand, so 3000 women in Arizona would be in that auditorium hearing the content of every speaker that was so rich”.
Katharine’s clients have consistently grown 2-3 times within a few years simply by using her practical, simple, and timely methods to build alignment with stakeholders at all levels. She harvests the intact teams’ talent and helps leaders communicate higher expectations, which drive historical results.