For International Women’s Day, we asked 35+ female founders what observations they had since starting their businesses. Quickly, five themes emerged: community, motherhood, bias, self-discovery and resilience.
These founders share what they learned about themselves while building their brands.
Brynn Putnam, Founder of Mirror
"The challenges of being a female founder — being different in your space — are well known. But being different also means you’ll think differently, and that’s exactly what being a founder is all about. So my advice: don’t waste your time worrying about how being different will stand in your way, focus on how being different is exactly what will make you succeed."
Victoria Thain, Founder of Perelel
"Time management is important for everyone, but even more so as a founder and in particular as a female founder with young children. The only truly finite resource is time so making sure every minute counts whether with work or with family has been crucial!"
Ariel Pasternak, Founder of Pineapple Collaborative
"One thing I've learned as a female founder is to balance both the masculine and feminine within me. I try to operate with both my masculine drive ("let's go go go/make this happen/push it") and my feminine desire ("I want intimacy, connection, and to be in the present"), and I feel the most whole when I do this."
Abigail Stone, Founder of Otherland
"You are your best asset: believing in yourself and your unique, authentic perspective yields incredible power. Knowing this, and if it feels right for you, starting to build your social presence early can be a huge asset as you pitch and grow your business. I wish I'd done it sooner!"
Tonya Papanikolov, Founder of Rainbo
"Business is an intuitive process. Intuition is one of those lesser described business skills that gives you incredible leverage. As females, intuition is one of our natural gifts. Honing and trusting it has allowed me to thrive."
Malaika Jones Kebde, Founder of Brown Girl Jane
"Oftentimes we spend a tremendous amount of time ensuring that everything is absolutely "perfect" before moving forward or launching our business. I now fully appreciate that the tweaks, pivots, and gradual fine-tuning are all part of the process of building a successful brand, and the notion of waiting until every element is perfectly aligned has the potential to actually slow growth and creativity in the long run. Just start!"