Women have always been known for their eye for detail, the ability to read the situation, as well as flexibility, adaptability, patience, and good communication skills. Therefore, traditionally “female” areas of entrepreneurship have been in services, trade, and design. However, there are several exceptions which will be covered in this article. Here are the most famous businesswomen and stories of success that break stereotypes.
Josephine Esther, later known as Estee Lauder, was born and brought up in New York with eight older brothers and sisters. Josephine’s uncle, pharmacist Jon Scotz, taught Josephine to make facial creams.
After marrying Joseph Lauder, Josephine changed her name to Estee and started to work hard. A man was also obsessed with the idea of starting a business to benefit people. The newlyweds barely slept: at night, they made creams, and during the day they looked for clients.
To advertise her products, Estee came to well-known beauty salons and offered clients to try her products for free. She perfectly applied another successful business strategy: this smart and resourceful woman did not approach small shops and pharmacies, but only negotiated with large shopping centers.
Sometimes, she had to use small tricks to get clients. For example, when the shop did not want to work with her, Estee stood close to the place and distributed her samples, sending interested buyers to the same shop.
So Estee Lauder products were being sold throughout America by the 1950s. Now these products represent 45% of the global market for cosmetics, creams and perfumes.
Those who are interested in the success stories of women in business surely know Indra Nooyi, president of the food company PepsiCo. She was born in India, where patriarchal foundations are so strong that it is unacceptable for a girl from a respected family to even study abroad. This is exactly what Indra did – at 22 she went to study in the USA. However, the future business superstar was used to hard work since childhood.
After enrolling in the American School of Management, Indra suffered from poverty for two years. Her scholarships and a secretary’s salary did not make enough for her to even buy a suit, so she had to go to job interviews wearing a sari. However, after some time passed, Indra got a job at a consulting company. She worked for six years, receiving brilliant recommendations. Later on, she received job offers from the established brands like Motorola and, finally, Pepsi.
By 2009, the entrepreneur from India not only became the CEO of the company, but also led the ranking of the most influential women in the world. This way, she proved that a woman in business can achieve a lot. Now she is one of the most famous businesswomen.
There are also women who have succeeded in the fuel industry. Patricia Woertz, head of the biofuel manufacturer Archer Daniels Midland, sets a perfect example.
In the fullness of time, Patricia’s parents helped her to achieve success. They raised the girl as a workaholic. Patricia continued her studies even in the summer and went on educational tours in America, when her classmates went on vacation to the seaside. However, the future businesswoman started her career rather ordinary, working as an accountant in a small firm. However, her talents were not ignored by others. Every three years, Woertz received a new position, each much more serious than the previous one. Finally, she was hired by Chevron. And then she went from the position of a financial manager to being an executive vice president for almost thirty years.
The business world is shocked by the news: Patricia Woertz resigned. What happened? In fact, nothing special – she has already achieved everything she aspired to. A month later, not without the help of her business experience, Patricia took the position as a director of Archer Daniels Midland, in which she remains to this day.
It is widely believed that successful women in business are lonely and have no time for personal life. Patricia Woertz is an exception: she raised three children, all of whom are as ambitious as she is.
These are not the only stories about the most famous businesswomen. Do not believe the stereotypes and do not put internal barriers if you are a woman who wants to start a business.
What do you think about women executives? Share in the comments below.
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