2021 Honoree

Molly Langstein

CEO, Chico's FAS, INC.

“You do not have to have all the answers…you just need to ask all the right questions.”

In your opinion, what qualities make a “Power Woman”?

Determination, passion, accountability, honesty and vulnerability.

With all the different issues one could focus on, how do you balance your efforts in pursuit of gender equality? Is it a global approach or a specific issue that you are passionate about?

I am passionate about equality and business thrives with diverse points of view. Developing an intentional hiring strategy and individual development plan for diverse associates is how we approach and create equality in the workforce.

Can you tell us a short story in which you encountered a block due to your gender?

A key obstacle from me early in my career was being taken seriously. Having the most popular dog name as your name, a tendency for a high-pitched voice and being small in stature or made more challenging when a leader used to refer to me as “little Molly”. I learned to physically take up more space and watch my pitch. When I became a VP I asked the leader privately how my new team could take me seriously when he referred to me as “little Molly”, especially when he did not refer to my peer as “little Rob”. Knowing when and how to approach people is important as this leader remains a mentor.

There are many studies that support the idea that a female presence in the board room increases the
bottom line and leads to healthier work environments. What can we do to continue to support and enhance the growth and presence of women in high profile positions?

Hold companies accountable to meet diversity metrics and measure through ISS and glass Lewis.

Was there a defining moment or experience in your life that led you to where you are today? What was it?

Many moments prepare you for leadership and taking every opportunity to learn from past experiences to shape the leader you want to be is key.

If you could have someone else’s job for a day, who and what would it be? Why?

This past year has taught us many things including living in the moment. Therefore, I am enjoying the job that I currently have. I’m honored to lead three unique brands, an amazing group of people and to service a fierce and fabulous loyal customer base.

What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?

You do not have to have all the answers, you just need to ask all the right questions.

What is your favorite book (fiction or non-fiction)?

I recently finished “The Beautiful Fall”What do you most value in your friends? and I am currently reading and enjoying “Think again; The power of knowing.”

What do you most value in your friends?


What do you consider the most overrated virtue?

I do not have or see an overrated virtue.

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