FE: Women warriors

24 Mar FE: Women warriors

“People will forget what you said. People will forget what you did…but people will never forget how you made them feel.” ~Dr. Maya Angelou
Maya Angelou knew how to own a room. And she continued to win over the campus.
I met Maya Angelou in high school after studying her works and honing my own craft as a young writer.
Dr. Angelou wrote and spoke about universal truths. I will never forget that she made time for me to talk about her writing before she spoke to the larger group. She made me feel validated and encouraged as a writer.
As we celebrate women throughout the rest of this month, let’s highlight ways to ad a spring in our step on the path to becoming an entrepreneur.

Confident communication
Some have the gift of confidence and other fake it until they make it.
I had a chance to talk with some Chicago and NYC PR professionals recently. Some interesting topics popped up, and we can put them into practice as you go through pitches and presentations on your path to becoming an entrepreneur.
Tips on Confidence and Communication
Know your room
What brings them there?
Why do they care?
What’s in it for them?
What action do you want them to take?
Know your angle and key message.
Have examples that support your message and lead up to the call to action (what you want your audience to do).
Do you want them to sig up for your email list, or book you as a speaker, or invest in your company?
Share personal stories, experience and anecdotes.
Use simple statistics.
Establish credibility
Why are you the best person to deliver the message?
Write down some ideas. Now how could you bring these in early to show you belong there?
Is there an interesting story of how you got here?
I learned so many tools from my first mentor, a brilliant female executive with American Express in Minneapolis and New York City.
I often refer to this as my “Devil Wears Prada” era since I work with many authors and filmmakers. I’m not shy to say that I started as her assistant in my twenties, because I had moved from LA and needed a job as I worked on what to do next.
I’m not shy about the humble place I was in. It was not my ultimate goal to be an Executive Assistant, but I was willing to work hard and smart. I became an event planner for her team, and eventually travelled the world with her, and then for her.
I went to Europe for the first time, polished my Parisian French and then represented American Express at a global conference on employee survey translations; I was the only American who spoke French, and it paid off professionally and personally. Imagine how your next opportunity or presentation will change your life!
Dive deeper to polish your confident communication:

A key to being a successful entrepreneur is being ready to adapt as business evolves in the 21st-century. Technology changes quickly from smart phones to tablets, to the latest apps to communicate and share our latest ideas. Entrepreneurs can stand out by being open to these changes and curious about how they will work well for their personal and professional brand.
Quick pulse check.
How are you feeling this week about committing to your goal? We hope you’re feeling enthusiastic.

The best entrepreneurs are open to fresh ideas, ready to handle what comes next and flexible enough to work through challenges that pop up. I believe we are passing on intelligent ideas for future entrepreneurs and leaders. We’re showing adaptability by introducing a fun and fresh perspective. Our ideas are grounded in business, but we enjoy the journey as well. Hope you do too! Use your adaptability as a force for good this week.

We welcome your comments.
Thank you to all our readers and to the women in our lives!

Akasha Lin
Akasha Garnier for #TheWishwall
Author, Brand Expert, Filmmaker
Photo: AkashaLin
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