"All of your roles are equally important," Linda Bethea from Danone

Apr 16, 2024

Welcome to the Pass the Mic and the Defining Moments series. We’re giving powerful women the opportunity to make the world their mentee. These rockstars are joining us to share their stories and sage advice with up-and-coming women.

Meet Linda Bethea, Head of Marketing, COE at Danone North America where she leads a team of over 80 strategy, media, design, and creative professionals to deliver best-in-class marketing plans across the enterprise. Linda has over 20 years of experience in key leadership roles across various food & beverage companies. She has won numerous awards, adding to her proven track record of growing both established and fledgling brands. Linda is passionate about the art and science behind marketing, and has the unique ability to marry data and design, developing integrated marketing plans that exceed business objectives. When she’s not at work, Linda plays a huge role in her daughter's life as a mother, mentor, and support system. 

Linda sat down with Deirdre Locksley, Associate Director, Content Marketing for a Pass the Mic interview. In it, she shares her advice for women looking to find a balance between everyday life and work. (Spoiler alert: life outside of work is still important.) Check out her full interview, and then dig into the highlights.

Pass The Mic with Linda Bethea - Full Interview

I think it's incumbent upon all of us to normalize the fact that we have lives outside of work.

Linda BetheaHead of Marketing, COE at Danone North America

The juggle is real.

The Juggle is Real, Linda Bethea - Pass The Mic

Highlight: “The juggle is real. I honestly don't believe in work-life balance. I believe in work-life integration, and I've always been very intentional about exposing my daughter to what I do. I love her, she is my number one priority, but I also really love my job. And it's okay to say that.” - Linda Bethea

Normalize life outside of work.

Normalize Life Outside of Work, Linda Bethea - Pass The Mic

Highlight: “I think it's incumbent upon all of us to normalize the fact that we have lives outside of work. Again, I love my job. I give 100% to my job, but I'm also a mom and a daughter and a friend, and those roles are equally important… The more we talk about them at work and normalize them, the easier we make it for other people to feel comfortable doing the same.” - Linda Bethea

Set your own boundaries. 

Set Your Own Boundaries, Linda Bethea - Pass The Mic

Highlight: “It's really important that everybody set their own individual boundaries, because it's not one size fits all. For me, I organize my day around my daughter's school schedule. I drive her to school every day and I pick her up from school every day. That schedule may not work for someone else… It's important to know what your boundaries are and communicate them to your team, because when everybody is aware of them, it's much easier to respect them.” - Linda Bethea

Understand what matters most.

Understand What Matters Most, Linda Bethea - Pass The Mic

Highlight: “You can't have it all, and that's fine. I don't think having it all should be the goal. I think it's really about understanding what matters most to you at this point in your life. And that changes throughout the course of your life based on the situation you're in, your life stage, the age of your children, your marital situation, whatever it may be. And so being really clear on what those priorities are and making it work personally and professionally, I've found that's the key to success.” - Linda Bethea

Define your own success.

Define Your Own Success, Linda Bethea - Pass The Mic

Highlight: “It shouldn't be about what everyone else defines as success. And it doesn't always have to be linear. It doesn't always have to be about climbing the corporate ladder. There could be a lateral move that makes sense for you, because you're going to be more fulfilled and challenged learning a new skill, or it may be joining a company that has more flexibility. Again, if you really focus on what you want and need at any point in your life and career, you'll be more fulfilled and able to make that happen.” - Linda Bethea

Toot your own horn. 

Toot Your Own Horn, Linda Bethea - Pass The Mic

Highlight: “As a woman, you have to advocate for yourself. Oftentimes, women don't want to rock the boat, and don't want to speak up, and don't want to toot their own horn, but if you don't, nobody else will. So, you have to really be a self-advocate and stand up for the work you've done.” - Linda Bethea

Linda can toot her own horn, but we’re here to sing her praises after hearing so much of her inspiring and actionable advice. Are you ready for more motivation from kickass women in leadership? Check out our Pass the Mic page.

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