As a business, dealing with assholes can be annoying. As a small business, dealing with assholes can be derailing -- if we let them. And we know firsthand that they will try. It's taken me years of practice, and sadly, much too much experience to even feel like I have enough expertise in this department to write this "how to" post.
When I set out to create my own brand, I didn't want just another tagline. I wanted a rallying cry. A call to arms to start aligning our careers and businesses with the values that matter to each of us. So of course, my tagline had to reflect my own core values. It had to be brave, fun and real: me.
True success of an entrepreneur comes not from their ideas, but from their inner mindset and character traits. It takes a certain type of leader to endure startup life and persevere past the hurdles that will inevitable lay ahead in their efforts to inspire disruption or bring a new innovation to life.
Celebrity endorsements are as old as the advertising industry itself. But in the past few years a new type of celebrity endorsement has emerged: we've moved from celebrity as spokesperson to celebrity as "global brand ambassador," someone who aims to raise the global profile and is an ongoing evangelist for the brand.
Luck is a word that very often is used with a negative connotation. "Oh, she's so lucky she had the chance to..." or, "He's so lucky he was at the right place at the right time." Jealousy comes to mind quite often when I hear the word "luck" used. Luck as it relates to business is something I think can be a self-fulfilling prophecy.
For years, I've tried to do it all as a maverick. I've turned down many opportunities to collaborate with people or organizations that stray even slightly from my purist intentions. But if I've learned anything over the past year, it's that the more vulnerable I'm able to be, the more the world becomes vulnerable.
I started a 30-day cold shower program after I realized that many of my other entrepreneurial heroes like Tony Robbins and Tim Ferriss also use cold showers to prime themselves for their day. Why? Because, as I discovered first hand, a cold shower is like a Rorschach ink blot test for all the crap you carry around in your mental backpack. The crap that holds you back from greatness.
Today women are starting businesses at a blistering pace with survival rates higher than men. When compared to their male counterparts, women are routinely lauded for having better team-building skills, being more intuitive and for being smarter money managers than their male counterparts. But none of this matters when you become an entrepreneur. So what does matter?
As we get busier and take on more tasks and challenges just to get by, we are increasingly finding comfort in many icons of our time who tell us that failing is ultimately the best way to learn and move forward. They say that we must celebrate our strengths and weaknesses and not worry about how others judge us.
Simply put, rather than reinventing the wheel, entrepreneurs need to find the wheel-maker, and leverage the wheel-maker's expertise and experience. There are four key practices to embed this into the enterprise. First, build a network before it's needed. I'm convinced that the single most important asset any entrepreneur can build is their Rolodex.
At 23 years of age, Nasreen Sheikh radically redefines what it means to be a Nepali woman. She is a Sunni Muslim living in a predominately Hindu community and is the founder of a fair-trade sewing collective called Local Women's Handicrafts. Nasreen is an outlier in her community. Typically, most Nepali girls marry between the ages of 15 and 18. The pressure to have a married daughter began to increase with each year Nasreen remained single however, and in 2014, Nasreen's parents decided that they had to take action. For Nasreen, this arranged marriage would have meant the end of Local Women's Handicrafts.
If you're anything like me, the moment you tell someone that you're a side hustler it elicits a response of awe and wonder...or maybe it's well disguised pity that you're filling every waking moment with work. Filling your days with extra projects in the hopes of kick starting your passion or transforming that passion into your paycheque is foreign to some, but its steadily becoming a reality for many.
The definition of a traditional career does not lend well in today's innovation and technology driven economy. Workplaces are changing. No longer must you come into the office everyday for business meetings when you can stay at home and with a click of a button, video conference with executives around the world.