8 Essential Bits of Outrage, Insight, & Inspiration from Chelsea Handler And Issa Rae

 A couple of TV queens, dropping knowledge.

A couple of TV queens, dropping knowledge.

Emblazon these words on your brain. And then, use this advice to get ahead. 

On March 7, the eve of International Women's Day, two titans of television—Issa Rae and Chelsea Handler—addressed a packed room of mostly women at Art of Elysium in the Koreatown neighborhood of Los Angeles. And, as expected, the two pulled no punches when it came to addressing issues of racial and gender inequity in Hollywood.

Presented by LinkedIn and hosted by its managing editor Chip Cutter, the conversation between the two women opened by confronting what it means to finally "make it" (spoiler: the feeling is fleeting). The two women also discussed how their priorities have changed throughout the various phases of their careers, and of course, how we can all do better in support of other women—particularly in light of the #MeToo and Time's Up movements.

Ahead, some of the most mind-bending bits of wisdom these women dropped. Read up, memorize, and carry these gems with you into your all upcoming endeavors.


Issa Rae


On her definition of "success":

“Success is a moving goal post. You celebrate in those moments and then look at what’s next...and [ask] 'How can I do it better than I did before?'”

On making your voice heard:

"This is the time where everyone has a voice. There are so many platforms dedicated to giving the average person a voice, so you can speak out.... In a moment you can be seen and heard. This is an opportune time—if you have something to say, speak out, and magical things can happen.”

On the importance of trailblazers:

"Shonda Rhimes...she made networking executives realize that Black people watch TV, and they want to see themselves. That was amazing. She was also one of the first people to take a chance on me and my own career. I love how many doors she has opened and has kept open.”

On asking for a raise:

“Working in the corporate world, I never asked for a raise… As an employer of men and women, I’ve seen men have no issue, and a lot of the women [don't ask], so I make sure to empower them to ask.... Keeping everything transparent is so important.”


Chelsea Handler


On defining the word "career":

“I’m good at expressing myself and being honest about it. If that’s a career, then anything is a career. You can make a career out of anything. All that matters is that you care deeply about what you’re doing.”

On the importance of taking risks:

“A leap of faith is what leads to big things. You’re not going to find out who you are unless you fall down a bunch.... You just get better at getting back up. But, if you don’t believe in yourself, no one is going to.”

On the push for more inclusivity in the workplace:

"We’re in an emergency situation. And I’m outraged. I’m tired of people saying 'Well, now I can’t hire a woman.' Yes, you fucking can. It’s time… If you’re not being fair to everybody, then how do you expect people to get along?”

On planning ahead:

"I never had a plan. I’m not that kind of person. I like to see what happens, have an evolution. You’re a different person every few years; be true to that, and really just follow what you care about and what your passion is. It’s not just about collecting a paycheck.”

Intro: Deena Drewis
Photos: Getty Images