I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – I love the the phrase “like a girl”. It’s so empowering to take a phrase that was once used to bully and make it empowering instead. I’ve built my business from nothing to a powerhouse technology firm without ever having to think or act “like a man”. I did it my own way. Like a girl.
When I launched Fattmerchant, the first subscription-based payment technology company out there, I was surrounded by male colleagues and executives. My idea was simple and I knew I could execute it perfectly, but I was laughed at instead of listened to. No one took me seriously, mostly because I didn’t want to do it their way.
But here I stand today, just three years into my company, and we’ve already processed over $1 billion for our thousands of members. I’m so excited to share with you my tips on how to stand your ground and execute just the way you want to.
It all starts with your attitude – so make it a good one! Be confident, be strong, and walk into the room with your shoulders back and head high always. Women start off at a disadvantage, and it’s unfortunately up to us to convince the room we’re worth their time. The right body language and tone of voice can mean a world of difference in swaying a room.
Always have a plan. It’s always a good practice, before a big meeting, to try and brainstorm all of the questions the room might have for you – both good and bad – and plan out your answers. People are always going to try and find the one bad thing about what you’re saying, so planning for that and having a good answer is key for gaining trust. And if you don’t know the answer… own it, promise a follow up, and actually follow through!
What you have to say matters – no matter what that little voice in your head might be saying! I know we might not all have that voice, and speaking up might be easier for some than others, but it’ll make the world of difference when you’re sitting in those board rooms, debating the next step for the company you created.
This might sound obvious at this point – but be yourself!! I know how much pressure there is to look and act a certain way, and it’s so easy to assume that if you mimic another successful person, you’ll be successful too – but that’s just not true! People value authenticity and honesty over all else, and embracing your best self in all areas of your life – especially your career – will open doors for you that you never knew existed.
After all that – it’s time to get shit done! There’s no billion dollar ideas, just billion dollar executions, so roll up your sleeves, put the work in, and crush it! Be open about the things you might need help with, build an amazing support team, and never take no for an answer. When you’re building a company or moving up in your career – there are people in every aspect of your life that will have a hand in your success – your partner, your kids, your colleagues. Build a tribe and execute your vision!