It’s National Female CEO Mentor Day and we’re celebrating all the inspirational, high-achieving women in our lives today including our latest badass babe, Lacy Merrick Conway, CEO of Latter & Blum. Not only is she the CEO of the largest real estate company in Louisiana and the Gulf South, she’s also a mother of two, an avid equestrian and fully committed to the success of other women.
We got a chance to talk to Lacey and learn what it takes to be a female CEO and the people along the way that supported her. Here is what she has to say to all our future female CEOs out there!
Was there a particular mentor that shaped you?
Like most, I have been shaped through a combination of life experiences and people. I’d say today, I am a good cross product of my artsy, literary mom and philanthropic, gifted business father.
“When that spot opens up, go for it.”Lacey Merrick Conway
What is your advice for women seeking to advance in their careers, particularly to the C-suite?
Plenty of studies have shown that men tend to run after opportunities when they open up, whether they’re qualified or not… whereas women tend to feel like they aren’t qualified even when they are. When it comes to pursuing the C suite, I feel like women could do themselves a favor by reaching higher even when they might not feel ready. So much of life is timing…when we wait and wait and wait, we fall into the mindset that we’re not “yet” qualified, that we need just one more year of experience, one more leadership class, etc. These are just ways we trick ourselves into playing small. When that spot opens up, go for it.
What is your leadership style?
I identify most with servant leadership. I am supportive and empathetic but also reserved. I think good leaders can change their style depending on the moment and the situation. At times you have to be demanding, direct, reflective or quiet. I am accessible to our management team as well as our agents and enjoy the frequent calls and emails.
Tell us three things about yourself that most people don’t know.
- I am an avid horse lover
- My first name is Caroline, but I have always gone by my middle name, Lacey. This is a source of a lot of confusion!
- Ancient Aliens is my favorite television show.
What is the best business advice you’ve ever received?
Don’t be afraid to make a decision.
Why is New Orleans special to Latter & Blum?
Latter and Blum was founded in New Orleans in 1916. We take pride in being a family owned New Orleans based company. While this is where we are based and where our corporate office is, we have offices across the Gulf South and every place we are is special. I realize that it sounds corny but in truth Louisiana is a remarkable place due to all the diverse cultures and influences that you can experience with all five of your senses.
What do you love about the real estate business?
Real estate affects almost everyone no matter how diverse their backgrounds. It also allows for success in many forms. The real estate business is not one size fits all. I also appreciate the many interesting and lovely people I have met through real estate.
Describe your charitable work and / or favorite causes that you are directly involved with and why.
I serve on the boards of Greater New Orleans, Inc., United Way Southeast Louisiana and Anti-Defamation League. Our company created a virtual series, “At Home” to support local entertainers who lost their income due to Covid-19. This platform helps showcase artists doing what they do best from the comfort of their home straight to ours. We feature a variety of Louisiana artists ranging from musicians, to storytellers, to chefs every other Thursday on Facebook Live and provide details of their Venmo or PayPal account for a virtual tip jar, and all proceeds go to support them. Our agents throughout Louisiana tune in and invite friends, family and clients to each performance.