I grew up in a conservative Indian household in Pennsylvania. I wasn’t allowed to play with the boys in the neighborhood. In grade school and high school, I had guy friends. I was deathly afraid of what to say.

The irony is, for the last 20 years, I’ve made my living on national and local television. I’ve been a broadcaster for two decades on networks such as CNN, ABC and Bloomberg. And guess who all my comrades were?


Today, I head up a South Asian executive network with 1800 women. We are a culture where women were seen and not heard. We were taught to succeed in the home. Not outside. That doesn’t help us in the workplace, when we have to be our own best advocates.

Here are examples of challenges my clients have faced:

“I don’t have stage fright on stage. I buckle to my knees when I get done. I’m worried about the audience judging me.” –V

“My biggest pain point is figuring out my niche. So many people are thought leaders. They are expressing themselves and doing it well. They figured out their strength. The space feels so competitive and saturated.” –A

“Imposter syndrome. So many other people are qualified to speak. Why am I speaking? It comes from my history. In college, I was always on eggshells because people questioned whether I should be there.” –N

“When I’m not prepared, then I tend to sprinkle in a lot of filler words.
What do you think the filler words are about? Maybe it’s like the fear of that silence or that pause, or like not knowing what to do in that moment. and trying to fill it with something, but you know, and I’m doing it right now with you, but like, I just, uh, this is how I naturally talk.” –S

I’m happy to work with you so you can show up more powerfully and with authority in the workplace.


Dr. Sonali Khanna Lal, LadyDrinks member and sport medicine physician