Cindi Leive

GREAT ADVICE

 

Cindi Leive

Editor-in-Chief, Glamour

 

Quick and mighty bits of wisdom from one of fashion’s greatest champions for women, Cindi Leive, who leads the Glamour Women of the Year Awards.

 

The greatest lesson I've learned…

Is to ask questions. I think sometimes it's easy, especially if you're young, to feel like you need to fake it till you make it, to act like you know exactly what to do in every work situation. But no one's born knowing everything about everything! I regularly pick up the phone to pick the brains of friends in top jobs in other industries to ask how they handle particularly tricky situations.

 

In an interview, what will separate you from the rest of the pack is…

Your enthusiasm. I want to hire people who are dying to work here. Being cool or blasé is not appealing.

 

To me, meetings are…

Essential and often fun but important to limit! We've instituted “Meeting-Free Wednesdays” at Glamour so that people can focus on editing, brainstorming, designing and writing without constant interruptions.

 

My favorite kind of story is…

The kind you want to repeat to a friend over dinner. If there's no nugget or idea in a story that you want to share, I don't want to publish it.

 

My greatest challenge is…

The constant change in the media industry — our business has changed more in the last three years than in the previous 30. It's all thrilling, but there are only so many hours in the day and people on staff — we can't ever do everything that we want.

 

I overcome it by…

Trying to be very principled and strategic — and recognizing that even the greatest brands in the world don't do everything under the sun; they do a few things very well. That's a great goal.

 

The best time management tool is…

To spend a week tracking exactly how much time you spend on what. You'll learn invaluable things — like that email may take three hours of your day and needs to be budgeted for, or that you're spending time on a relatively unimportant part of your business that could be delegated.

 

The most valuable business advice I’ve received…

Ask for what you want. I always say that asking for greater responsibility doesn't guarantee you'll get it, but not asking guarantees you won't.

 

One thing I wish I’d known when starting my career…

That it's OK to take a vacation! Took me a while to learn that one — I only took five days off for my wedding and honeymoon. Now I take every single day I can get and don't regret it, and I encourage my team to do the same. You come back more energized, anyway!