Σου έχουμε ξαναγράψει για το She Succeeds Entrepreneurial retreat που διοργανώνει η εταιρεία Shefari, 5-10 Οκτωβρίου στην Κέρκυρα. Θα είναι μια μοναδική ευκαιρία να μάθεις από καταξιωμένες γυναίκες από το χώρο της διεθνούς επιχειρηματικότητας, να ανοίξεις τους ορίζοντές σου, να δικτυωθείς, αλλά και να απολαύσεις -κι εμείς ζηλεύουμε πολύ που δεν θα μπορέσουμε να είμαστε εκεί. Γι' αυτό και ζητήσαμε από τις ξεχωριστές ομιλήτριες του retreat να μας απαντήσουν σε τρεις ερωτήσεις -που ίσως σου δώσουν κι εσένα έμπνευση για τα πρώτα ή τα επόμενα επιχειρηματικά σου βήματα.
Παρακάτω θα διαβάσεις (στα αγγλικά) τις απαντήσεις των: Julie Theis - Business Coach, Julie Theis Coaching & Consulting | Lisa Furuland Kostianis - CEO and Founder of Dockatot | Christina Papavlasopoulos - Co-Founder of Shefari | Kristina Headrick - Copywriter, Yoga Instructor, Experience Creator | Marina Vasilara - Global Communications Director, APIVITA
Μπορείς να διαβάσεις περισσότερα για την επαγγελματική πορεία τους εδώ και, αν θέλεις να τις γνωρίσεις από κοντά, να διαβάσεις στο τέλος αυτού του ποστ πώς μπορείς να εξασφαλίσεις τη θέση σου στο retreat με 250 ευρώ έκπτωση στην αρχική τιμή και να στηρίξεις παράλληλα με τη δήλωση της συμμετοχής σου τις επόμενες δράσεις του Women On Top!
Is it feasible for a Greek new or prospective entrepreneur, without an inherited fortune to support her, to aim for business success that is not confined within the Greek market?
JT: It is absolutely feasible. Growing up I was homeless on and off, I’ve been in foster care, I’ve lived without lights and without hot water at times. Not only was there no fortune to inherit, I first had to dig myself out of a 6 ft hole just to be on the ground level with everyone else. I’ve since then built a 6-figure company and have had my services based all over the world. I wasn’t supposed to be successful but I chose to be. Whatever reason you’re telling yourself for why you can’t, it’s just an excuse. The reality is that someone out there has done more, with less. If you want it bad enough, you will find a way, and if you can’t find a way, make a way.
LFK: I am a Swedish national, married to a Greek and living in Greece permanently for three years now. Coming to live full-time in Greece has been an eye-opener with regards to people’s reliance on family money (and contacts). I often meet people who say that things are impossible, as they lack that kind of backing. As a consequence, they don’t even venture to give their ideas a go. My husband and I have no such backing. Quite the opposite. We are truly self-made. And if you’ve got the grit and skills that it takes to run a successful international business, you will make it based in Greece just as easily – or painstakingly (because it is hard; don’t fool yourself) – as anywhere else. In fact, I have found that Greek companies - suppliers and manufacturers - can be more flexible than elsewhere, because the country has suffered through a financial depression, which has made them truly appreciate my business. However, I have to reiterate that starting a business is no walk in the park. Anywhere. One needs to be prepared to work double, triple… until a start-up is financially stable and profitable to draw a salary for oneself.
CP: Absolutely! Today, most businesses can be run online and clients can be sourced via digital marketing. She simply needs to ask herself: What can I do to add value based on my unique talents, and how can I reach the people who can benefit from this? Leverage what you have or what you are that is unique, rather than try to be someone else. Everything is doable with a dose of creative thinking. Whether her business is product or service-based, the opportunities for growth are endless. Some ideas (which are completely free) include related Facebook groups, business buddies who refer one another, networking in local professional groups, collaborating and cross-marketing with brands who have a similar audience, Instagram giveaways, and more.
MV: This is a difficult question to reply and in my opinion it is not limited to men or women. Being an entrepreneur is hard by definition. It Is one of the hardest paths in working life. By reading interviews or hearing talks of many entrepreneurs in Greece, you realize how many obstacles they have.
However, it is feasible and we can find successful examples in our country with companies that managed to grow outside Greece as well (APIVITA, the company I work for, is a good success story). Therefore, for someone considering this path, the question is not if it feasible but if he/she has the character of being an entrepreneur. An entrepreneur will definitely have to make many sacrifices and especially in the early years he/ she will have to live with limited resources.
Keep in mind that there are some great venture funds around that look for teams with global ideas to support and what they also stress is that a strong team (capability- but also willpower- wise) is of outmost importance.
What's the most crucial professional or life advice that you've ever been given and how have you applied it during your own journey?
JT: The best way to be successful in business, is to be in business. I started my first business at 20 years old, I started my next at 21, and another at 22. They were sloppy, they weren’t perfect, I made so many mistakes and often bit off more than I could chew, but I knew done was better than perfect. I was learning skills from failing as young as I could, when others were to scared to even try. By the time I was 24, I was making a consistent $10k a month income from mastering online marketing. The only reason I had that expertise was from years behind the scenes struggling.
CP: I would say I have two of equal importance. The first is to be thick-skinned and stick to your gut instinct on your business amidst the naysayers. You may receive a huge amount of no’s before you get a yes on your sales, investment, or whatever it might be. Dr. Suess and JK Rowling, both internationally-renowned authors, were rejected 20 and 13 times by publishers, respectively. Had both given up after the first few rejections, we wouldn’t have the beloved children’s books or the world’s first billionaire author. Secondly, remember that there is room for your idea in any market, something known as Blue Ocean Theory. The theory states that even in a crowded market, known as the metaphoric “red ocean”, you can differentiate yourself and swim to clear blue waters where your business stands out from the others. This is proven time and time again when someone new innovates in the most congested of markets. Maria Hatzistefanis, founder of Rodial, is a perfect example of applying both pieces of advice. She forged her own identity with unique branding in the very crowded beauty industry, but also personally went to retailers and didn’t let the initial no’s stop her until she had some retail deals. Another last one is truly listen to your client. While sticking to your instinct is important, you may need to pivot a bit to accommodate what a client really wants.
KH: Stay in your own lane. This advice came to me through an artist, and I believe artists speak the truth more than anyone else, in a sense. He is an older Greek man, in fact! In the age of social media, we are all constantly, obsessively scrutinizing each other and comparing ourselves. It can completely inhibit your progress and still creativity - I feel like every company that launches now has the same aesthetic, same marketing, etc. This artist told me that when he’s working on something, he won’t even go see other art exhibitions as it hurts his process. I realized I myself need to take breaks from social media. I post, but I don’t spend much time scrolling and “stalking” others. It confuses me and has kept me from going after things in the past.
MV: The best advice was given from one of my professors on how to deal with the fear of not having a job during times of crisis or in a highly competitive environment. He said we should always choose jobs that give us the opportunity to learn new things continuously and we will never be obsolete. I am always seeking knowledge. I constantly ask questions to my colleagues, teams and suppliers of services and I am curious to learn new things. I have no fear at all that by making questions it will look as if I do not know something in depth. Also, it is a great way and tool to develop a collaborative idea and result during group meetings. Also, this advice is always on my mind when choosing a new job or when staying in a company. If I stop learning it is a sign that I need to change my working environment.
Three books, three newsletters and three social media accounts (and any podcasts) that you would suggest to your friends.
Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill
The Magic of Big Thinking by Dr. David Schwatz
Secrets of a Millionaire Mind by T. Harve Eker
For the others I have a rule where I to try to consume as little as possible. My job already constantly puts me on social media, so I stay in my lane on my off time. I create my own theories and practices and I learn from my mentors. The only podcast I listen to is the MF CEO Project. The main social media account I’m on is my group Intentional CEO on Facebook that is filled with over 1000 worldwide entrepreneurs and has 80 countries represented. It’s my favorite place to hang out -feel free to join, we would love to have you!
CP: I’m a reader, so I love books and newsletters. There are so many incredible titles for Some of my favorites would be:
How to Be an Overnight Success, by Maria Hatzistefanis
Αν σου άνοιξε η όρεξη για περισσότερα, μπορείς να δηλώσεις συμμετοχή στο retreat της Shefari εδώ.
Και: αν δηλώσεις συμμετοχή με τον αποκλειστικό κωδικό του Women On Top, εξασφαλίζεις:
Έκπτωση 250 ευρώ στη συμμετοχή σου και
Την ευκαιρία να υποστηρίξεις το έργο μας, με τη δωρεά που θα κάνει η Shefari για κάθε δήλωση συμμετοχής μέσω της πλατφόρμας του Women On Top
Εισάγοντας τον κωδικό WOTGR στο αντίστοιχο πεδίο της φόρμας εγγραφής για το «She Succeeds Entrepreneurial Retreat”.
Έχεις απορίες; Μπορείς να διαβάσεις περισσότερα στην ιστοσελίδα του retreat ή να επικοινωνήσεις με την ομάδα της Shefari στο +30 210 895 2870 (για την Ελλάδα) και +1 727 253 6948 (για τις ΗΠΑ) ή στο firstname.lastname@example.org.
Είσαι έτοιμη να δηλώσεις συμμετοχή; Κάνε κλικ εδώ και μην ξεχάσεις να χρησιμοποιήσεις τον εκπτωτικό κωδικό σου WOTGR πριν από την πληρωμή.
Αν θέλεις να παρακολουθείς τα νέα και τις δραστηριότητες της Shefari, τσέκαρε τη σελίδα τους στο Facebook και στο Instagram.
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