‘People Don’t Expect A Boss To Look Like Me’: Elaine Welteroth On Leading Teen Vogue And Challenging Our Biases

By Heidi Stevens
Chicago Tribune

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) Elaine Welteroth, who in 2017, became the youngest person ever hired as editor-in-chief at “Teen Vogue” shares what she thinks workplaces need to do to create more space for underrepresented groups. 

Chicago Tribune

On her summer book tour, at the beginning of the audience Q&A portion, Elaine Welteroth would invite people to the front of the room to answer the following:

“My name is (blank). I am claiming space for (blank). No matter what (blank) may say.”

It was a nod to her book title, “More Than Enough: Claiming Space for Who You Are (No Matter What They Say),” but it was also a way to get the crowd talking about challenges and naysayers they bump up against day after day.

“A lot of times it’s the voice in your own head telling you you’re not capable,” Welteroth, 32, said. “Sometimes it’s people literally telling you, ‘You can’t do something you want to do because of the way you look, where you come from, what you have or don’t have.’ ”

The exercise is a little scary at first, she said.

“But once it gets going, it is absolutely so powerful to see what comes to the surface when you create space for people to feel safe and seen and heard,” Welteroth said. “When you invite vulnerability to the table and lead with your own vulnerability. Every single time, it would blow my mind.”

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