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As a female-dominated company, we love to champion fellow women in business, as well as learn from them—there’s something truly special about gleaning honest advice from successful, relatable women. In an effort to empower and inspire, we tapped eight female entrepreneurs in fashion, beauty and wellness to share the sage wisdom they’ve found helpful in furthering their careers.
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Yael Aflalo, founder and CEO of Reformation "Find your own way. The more you define your own method and voice, the more important what you do becomes. Your point of view and your vision are the things you have to offer, so use them."
Lisa Williams, founder of Lisa Says Gah "Here's the truth: There is no secret hack to success. You simply need to do the work and see it through. You won't do the work if you don't love it, and you'll hate the work if you're just not that good at it, either. When you find something you love, it will come easy because you're (surprise!) already good at it. For me, the road to success was working for other companies I loved for years before going off on my own. No success story is the same, but finding something you truly love, putting in the work and maintaining a good reputation are key. Furthermore, warm up to rejection. It's absolutely going to happen if you put yourself out there, whether it's a job interview, a pay raise request, cold-calling or emailing, starting a business or sharing an idea. Rejection means you're making moves, and with each rejection, you learn and make tweaks. Each big win often comes with a handful of mini rejections that got you there."
Vicky Tsai, founder and CEO of Tatcha "Young women often ask me how to find a way to enjoy their work. I would say that happiness is a choice, and this applies to work and to life. For me, being happy began with self-awareness—learning my strengths and weaknesses, what energizes me and what drains me, and taking control of my career. Once you have the self-awareness to find the right industry, company, and role, you are in a good place to start working hard."
Daina Trout, CEO and co-founder of Health-Ade Kombucha "When the world feels overwhelming—like when the challenge is so big, you get the feeling it’s too much, or you’re stuck—all you have to do it forget about the 'bigness' of it all, clear your mind and ask yourself: What is the best next thing to do? You only have to think of one thing, the best next option, and then you just have to do that one thing. After that’s done, the next move will become clear. This advice has gotten me through many tough times at Health-Ade—at all stages. When you focus on just one thing, it’s not too hard, and the staircase will soon come into focus again (Oprah taught me that!).”
Tyler Haney, founder and CEO of Outdoor Voices "My best ideas often occur when I’m physically moving, so I try to incorporate casual activity into everything I do, from bike-commuting to walking while taking business calls. Exercise is a great way to stay creative, centered and keep your brain happy."
Aurora James, creative director of Brother Vellies “I was told very early on that you absolutely must be passionate about what you do. The longer I continue my journey, the more I realize that passion is contagious, and people will catch that passion and the fire will spread. Life is too short to spend 40 hours a week dabbling in the mundane. Sometimes your only mode of transportation is a leap of faith.”
Kirsten Kjaer Weis, founder of Kjaer Weis "More than anything, balance is essential. If you want to perform your best at work I don't think it’s honorable to deprive yourself of sleep and energy. I believe you have to take care of yourself first and maintain balance in your life to be successful. When starting your own business, I think it’s really important to stay true to your vision and to not cut corners. You might run into people along the way who will tell you to get out there fast and try to rush you, but you cannot compromise [your vision] even when you feel like you’re running out of steam."