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Furman president shares thoughts with women on balancing life and work

By Jim Fair, Editor
Published on Tuesday, September 23, 2014

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Furman University President Elizabeth Davis, left, chats with Karen Corn of Greer State Bank at Tuesday's Women's Forum on Work and Life Balance.
 

Jim Fair

Furman University President Elizabeth Davis, left, chats with Karen Corn of Greer State Bank at Tuesday's Women's Forum on Work and Life Balance.

 



Enlarge photo

A near-standing only crowd attended the Greer State Bank-sponsored inaugural Women's Forum at The Davenport Tuesday.
 
 

Jim Fair

A near-standing only crowd attended the Greer State Bank-sponsored inaugural Women's Forum at The Davenport Tuesday.

 

 

Don’t try to emulate someone in a situation like you and know thyself.

Those were two of the suggestions Furman University President Elizabeth Davis told a nearly standing room only group at a Women’s Forum Tuesday morning at The Davenport in downtown Greer.

The inaugural gathering for women is part of a Work and Life Balance series presented quarterly by Greer State Bank.

Davis, who became president at Furman on July 1, spoke on her principles balancing a life that includes husband, Charles, and children, Chad and Claire. She was executive vice president and provost of Baylor University in Texas, where she oversaw the university’s 11 schools and colleges

Davis’s seven basic principles illustrated how she manages to balance her personal, family and professional life.

• “Know thy self is about understanding what I’m good at and what I do,” Davis said. “We can’t let someone else set our priority. When I first graduated from college I had to work and I considered it a great privilege. My greatest joy is giving people help to achieve their aspirations. I consider myself a facilitator and neighbor.”

• Don’t undermine yourself. “Understand the value you are to your vocation,” Davis asked.

• The partner match is about, “How we manage worth in our lives,” Davis said. “It’s intentional how we figure to get things done. “It’s truly a real partnership when you bring family into decision making.”

• Figure out what doesn’t have to be done. Give yourself permission to let things go.

• Manage technology, don’t let technology manage you.

• Bring your family into your work. It’s a great service to children and family to bring them together to discuss changing environments in work and how it effects them. “Claire was part of the decision when we discussed the move (Waco, Texas to Greenville) every step of the way. She was heading into her senior year and we gave Claire the option to stay or move,” Davis said. “She moved with us, adapted quite well and it may have been the best thing to have happened to her.”

• Decide the non-negotiable ahead of time. Figure out ahead of time what you are not willing to do. Davis illustrated her point by saying she made decisions based on her children’s activities and stayed true to them.

“Think about work and life,” Davis said. “They don’t have to conflict. If work reflects what you are and what you enjoy, then it can become part of your life.”

 

Businesses mentioned in this article.

Greer State Bank

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