The Executives' Club Of Chicago
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Episode 004 - Julie Smolyansky, CEO of Lifeway Foods

Julie Smolyansky, CEO of Lifeway Foods, shares her journey of becoming the youngest woman CEO of a publicly traded company at just 27 in 2002. It’s a journey that taught her many lessons along the way about the power of family, wellbeing, and staying true to who you are. Listen to hear more about Julie’s story and how she finds meaning outside of work to contribute to a safer, more equitable society.

1:09 – original career path in psychology and social work//lessons learned
4:20 – behavioral economics and marketing
6:45 – how Julie got her start as CEO, personal journey
11:45 – Pivotal decisions to grow the business exponentially – labelling, hiring, networking
15:00 – training others to take your job/delegating
15:47 – COVID impacts on the business
22:45 – self care and investing in the wellbeing of your workforce
30:15 – Modeling leadership from the top down and customizing wellness for employees
34:00 – CEO Burnout
38:45 – Chicago as a business partner – positive
42:08 – Chicago as a business partner – challenges/changes
45:25 – something not everyone knows about Julie
47:20 – Julie’s life hacks
50:27 – forecasting, intriguing future things
53:15 – proudest moments

Follow Julie on Instagram @juliesmolyansky and Lifeway at @lifewaykefir

Check out Lifeway's website.

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