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9 Noteworthy Female Entrepreneurs Who Have Changed Their Industries

9 Noteworthy Female Entrepreneurs Who Have Changed Their Industries

Technology, web applications and the mobile boom, all of these are fast-growing industries and sectors across the whole world. But what’s the one group that’s experiencing just as much growth, that people often overlook? Female entrepreneurs.

Men often get the limelight for business, financial and technological accomplishments. In this post, we’re focusing on nine noteworthy female entrepreneurs you’re probably didn’t know about.

 1. Nicole Sanchez

A graduate of both Harvard College and Harvard Business School, Sanchez brought her talents to multiple companies as a consultant and hospitality expert before venturing into entrepreneurship. Somewhat apprehensive about entrepreneurship in general, Sanchez notes that even after attending a school like Harvard, she didn’t feel fully qualified to start her own company.

Her biggest recommendation to fellow female entrepreneurs is to get started today, even when conditions aren’t perfect. One of Sanchez’ largest accomplishments to date is the creation of TenderCaring, a business that helps seniors remain at home through technology and living assistance.

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2. Heidi Ganahl

Founder of one of the largest multifaceted dog brands in the United States, Camp Bow Wow, Heidi Ganahl is a market leader when it comes to pets. Her venture is unique in that Camp Bow Wow offers more customizable services than competitors at better prices, and each dog supervisor is trained to meet specific benchmarks of excellence.

Ganahl’s $65 million franchise currently serves a wide variety of needs for dog owners at over 130 locations throughout the country.

3. Maria Seidman

Seidman orchestrated accomplishments from mobile teams at MGM, Goldman Sachs and Warner Bros. before launching her own company, Yapp. Her company Yapp is now the go-to site for creating mobile applications in minutes.

4. Heddi Cundle

Before starting her own venture, Cundle worked with global travel and lifestyle brands for over two decades. She now brings that experience and insight to her own company, MyTab.co, a travel gift card service.

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Cundle’s concept is unique in that family and friends can contribute to a loved one’s travel desires, and the loved one can utilize thousands of airfare and lodging options via the app.

5. Judith Faulkner

If you’ve been to any kind of doctor recently, you’ve probably seen a program called Epic Systems on the desktop computer. This efficient and user-friendly software was founded by Judith Faulkner, who bootstrapped the company with just $6,000 in 1979.

In 2014, Epic pulled revenues of $1.77 billion. Talk about an encouraging and empowering story for young female entrepreneurs!

6. Sandy Lerner

Depending on your place of work, your vocation may involve multiple conference rooms, mobile phones and pagers. Cisco Systems may very well be the provider of such technology, as they are now the largest networking technology company in the world.

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As co-founder of Cisco, Lerner worked with then-boyfriend Leonard Bosack on the company for six years before she was fired and they both left. After selling another cosmetics company she started, Lerner is now deeply involved in sustainable agriculture.

7. Anne Bezancon

Previously an executive for PCI and Productopia, Anne Bezancon effectively conquered multiple mobile and consumer marketing challenges. Currently, she is the president and founder of Placecast, a cutting-edge mobile marketing firm.

Bezancon takes her expertise from marketing to customers, how they want to be reached, and provides it for companies who want to increase customer engagement and satisfaction in real-time scenarios. Some of Placecast’s clients include Best Buy, Starbucks, Discover, GAP, Kohl’s, American Eagle and Jet Blue Airways.

8. Sonia Kapadia

A graduate of Harvard Business School and University of Pennsylvania, Kapadia spent multiple years at Pepsi and Gu Chocolate Desserts before deciding she wanted to create her own operation.

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Kapadia’s currently best-known entrepreneurial effort is Taste Savant, an outlet and info hub for savvy diners.

9. Anne Wojcicki

Before her own venture, Wojcicki was likely best-known as wife of Sergey Brin, co-founder of Google. Then in 2006, Anne Wojcicki began 23andMe – a genetic history reporting firm. Users now purchase the genetic reporting package, and – after mailing a small tube of saliva back – receive over 60 customized and personal reports about their genetics and possible disease risk. 23andMe’s pricing has risen over recent years, but the firm also provides more value than previous iterations of their product. If you want to get a highly personalized report of your health, look no further than Wojcicki’s unique venture.

Conclusion

Hopefully learning about these female entrepreneurs has inspired and encouraged you to keep moving forward to your own goals. As many of these women have revealed – dreams don’t happen overnight, the biggest step you can take towards entrepreneurial success is to simply commit yourself and keep pursuing your passion with hard work!

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Brad Johnson

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Last Updated on December 3, 2019

7 Powerful Steps to Achieve Career Success

7 Powerful Steps to Achieve Career Success

I often hear people say, “I want to be successful but don’t know where to start” or “I’ve achieved career success yet I’m not happy.” And then I ask, “what does career success mean to you?” And many have a hard time articulating their response with much conviction.

It’s common that people lack clarity, focus, and direction. And when you layer on thoughts and actions that are misaligned with your values, this only adds to your misdirected quest to achieve your career success.

A word of caution. It’s going to take some time for you to think about and work on your own path for career success. You need to set aside time and be intentional about the steps you take to achieve career success. In my opinion, this step-by-step guide is apart of your life philosophy.

1. Define Career Success for Yourself

Pause. Give yourself time and space for self-reflection.

What does career success mean to you?

This is about defining your career success:

  • Not what you think you ‘should’ do
  • Not what people may think of you
  • Not adjusting to friends and family’s judgements
  • Not taking actions based on societal or community norms

“A flower does not think of competing to the flower next to it. It just blooms” – Zen Shin

When you strip away all your external influences and manage your inner critic, what are you left with? You need to define career success that best suits your life situation.

There’s no fixed answer. Everyone is different. Your answer will evolve and be impacted by life events. Here are a few examples of career success:

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  • Work-life balance
  • Opportunities for growth and advancement
  • Feeling valued that my contributions had an impact

Now even as you reflect on the examples above, the descriptions are not specific enough. You’ve got to take it deeper:

  • What do you mean by work-life balance?
  • What do you consider to be opportunities for growth and advancement?
  • How do you like to be recognized for your work? How do you know if your contributions have had an impact?

Let’s take a look at some potential responses to the questions above:

  • I want more time with my family, and less stress at work
  • I want increased responsibilities, to manage a team, a higher income, and the prestige of working at a certain level in the company
  • I’d like my immediate leader to send me a thank-you note or take me out for coffee to genuinely express her or his gratitude. I’ll know I’ve made an impact if I get feedback from my coworkers, leaders and other stakeholders.

Further questions to reflect on to help narrow the focus for the above responses:

  • What are some opportunities that can help you get traction on getting more time with your family? And decrease your stress at work?
  • What’s most important for you in the next 12 months?
  • What’s the significance of receiving others’ feedback?

Now, I’m only scratching the surface with these examples. It takes time to do the inner work and build a solid foundation.

Start this exercise by first asking what career success means to you and then ask yourself meaningful questions to help you dig deeper.

What types of themes emerge from your responses? What keywords or phrases keep coming up for you?

2. Know Your Values

Values are the principles and beliefs that guide your decisions, behaviors and actions. When you’re not aligned with your values and act in a way that conflicts with your beliefs, it’ll feel like life is a struggle.

There are simple value exercises that can help you quickly determine your core values. This one designed by Carnegie Mellon University can help you discover your top 5 values.[1]

Once you have your top 5 values keep them visible. Your brain needs reminders that these are your top values. Here are some ways to make them stick:

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  • Write them on cue cards or notes and post it in your office
  • Take a picture of your values and use it as a screensaver on your phone
  • Put the words on your fridge
  • Add the words on your vision board

Where will your value words be placed in your physical environment so that you have a constant reminder of them?

3. Define Your Short-Term and Long-Term Goals

When writing your short-term and long term life goals, use the SMART framework – Specific Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-bound. Treat this as a brainstorming exercise. Your potential and possibilities are limitless.

How you define short-term and long-term is entirely up to you. Short-term can be 30 days, 90 days, or 6 months. Maybe long-term goals are 4 months, 1 year, or 10 years.

Here are a few self-reflection questions to help you write your goals:[2]

  • What would you want to do today if you had the power to make it the way you want?
  • If no hurdles are in the way, what would you like to achieve?
  • If you have the freedom to do whatever you want, what would it be?
  • What type of impact do you want to have on people?
  • Who are the people you most admire? What is it about them or what they have that you’d want for your life or career?
  • What activities energize you? What’s one activity you most love?

Remember to revisit your core values as you refine yours goals:

  • Are your goals in or out of alignment with your core values?
  • What adjustments do you need to make to your goals? Maybe some of your goals can be deleted because they no longer align with your values.
  • How attainable are your goals? Breakdown your goals into digestible pieces.
  • Do your short-term goals move you towards attaining your long-term goals?

Get very clear and specific about your goals. Think about an archer – a person who shoots with a bow and arrows at a target. This person is laser focused on the target – the center of the bullseye. The target is your goal.

By focusing on one goal at a time and having that goal visible, you can behave and act in ways that will move you closer to your goal.

4. Determine Your Top Talents

What did you love doing as a kid? What made these moments fun? What did you have a knack for? What did you most cherish about these times? What are the common themes?

What work feels effortless? What work do you do that doesn’t seem like work? Think about work you can lose track of time doing and you don’t even feel tired of it.[3]

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What are your desires? Try it out. Experiment. Take action and start. How can you incorporate more of this type of work into your daily life?

What themes emerge from your responses? How do your responses compare to your responses from the values exercise and your goals?

What do you notice?

5. Identify ‘Feeling’ Words You Want to Experience

Do you have tendencies to use your head or heart to make decisions?

I have a very strong tendency to make rational, practical, and fact-based decisions using my head. It’s very rare for me to make decisions using my emotions. I was forced to learn how to make more intuitive decisions by listening to my gut when I was struggling with pivotal life decisions. I was forced to feel and listen to my inner voice to make decisions that feel most natural to me. This was very unfamiliar to me, however, it expanded my identity.

Review this list of Feeling Words. Use the same technique you use for the values exercise to narrow down how you want to feel.

Keep these words visible too!

Review your responses. What do you observe? What insights do you gain from these responses and those in the above steps?

6. Be Willing to Sit with Discomfort

Make career decisions aligned with your values, goals, talents and feelings. This is not for the faint hearted. It takes real work, courage and willingness to cut out the noise around you. You’ll need to sit with discomfort for a bit until you build up your muscle to hit the targets you want.

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Surround yourself with a supportive network to help you through these times.

“These pains you feel are messengers. Listen to them” – Rumi

7. Manage Your Own Career

Not to be cynical, but no one can make you happy but yourself. If you don’t take control of your career and manage it like your own business – no one will.

Discern between things that you can control and what you can’t control. For example, you may not be able to control who gets a promotion. However, you can control how you react to it and what you’ve learned about yourself in that situation.

Summing Up

For many who have gone through a career change or been impacted by life events, these steps may seem very basic. However, it’s sometimes the basics that we forget to do. The simple things and moments can edge us closer to our larger vision for ourselves.

Staying present and appreciating what you have today can sometimes help you achieve your long-term goals. For example, if you’re always talking about not having enough time and wanting work-life balance, think about what was good in your work day? Maybe you took a walk outside with your co-workers. This could be a small step to help you reframe how you can attain work-life balance.

Remember to take time for yourself. Hit pause, notice, observe and reflect to achieve career success by getting deliberate and intentional:

  1. Define Career Success for Yourself
  2. Know Your Values
  3. Define Your Short-Term and Long-Term Life and Goals
  4. Determine Your Top Talents
  5. Identify ‘Feeling’ Words You Want to Experience
  6. Be Willing to sit with Discomfort
  7. Manage Your Own Career

“When you stop chasing the wrong things you give the right things a chance to catch you.” – Lolly Daskal

Good luck and best wishes always!

More Tips on Advancing Your Career

Featured photo credit: rawpixel via unsplash.com

Reference

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