“I didn’t get here by dreaming or thinking about it. I got here by doing it.”- Estee Lauder, Founder of Estee Lauder Cosmetics
A person’s strength is not only revealed in his physical appearance but also his charisma and the aura he gives away; this aura is what leaves a lasting impression in the mind of his admirers than whatever physical qualities he might possess. Everyone involved in business or money making process desires to amplify their strengths before their prospective clients; bearing in mind that this is the first route to making sales as well as profit. Being a woman should not be a limiting factor to attaining great heights and inventing solutions to world problems. To be a successful business woman there are certain personality traits that must not be found wanting within you.
Below are 7 strengths to be portrayed by any woman who is willing to take over the business world:
- Ownership Mentality: A great business woman possesses strong ownership of her business, whether good, bad, ugly or exceptionally amazing. You must be willingly to accept the outcome of whatever decision you made in your business. If it is a bad decision, accept it and do not try to pretend it didn’t happen or apportion blames. Pick up the lessons as you trash the mistake. Everyone goes through some kind of ‘hiccups’ on their way to success and people who are confident enough to admit they are wrong; when something doesn’t go as planned will always be admired. A great business woman is one who can remain the boss in good and terrible times. On the other hand, if it’s a big break, own it as well and give yourself a “thumbs up” for it; celebrate your victory and be proud of it. By owning it and taking responsibility, you are being a true business owner, you are setting a great example and you are saving time and allowing yourself to learn, develop and grow.
- A Never-Give-Up Spirit: This emphasizes on the ability to be resilient and persistent. Keeping a business going is much more difficult than starting one as it takes so much persistent and not giving in to horrible situations. According to Albert Einstein in the middle of difficulties lie opportunities. Every business woman must prepare for those windy times that will almost break her to pieces. Don’t be afraid of a challenge, there is a reason that you have got to the point you are at, and it is because you worked for it. Develop a never-give-up spirit that will enable you walk through some tough times and hard punches, because the pride you will feel when you gets those wins will be worth it.
- Assertiveness: Being assertive is an essential strength to attaining a successful business career. Being assertive commands respect in business. Convey assertiveness by being fearless, speaking with authority and purpose. Adopt a confident manner, deal with any criticism rationally and be calm, cool and considered.
- Tactfulness and Approachability: A successful business woman never tries to make tough decisions at the expense of her workers rather she looks forward to a more team-inspired manner. In a healthy work environment, being able to approach a leader and offer opinions is critical and being able to develop a collaborative workplace where everyone has a respected voice will create the best environment where quality solutions develop. Strong business women know how to counter their weaknesses by building relationships where others show strength. In our modern world today, Keeping the office door open and modeling a strong dose of approachability is a women’s under-utilized gift.
- A Strong Sense of Purpose: A strong sense of purpose emphasizes on your ability to believe that what you are doing will make a difference. There is no point in starting a business unless you possess a strong sense of purpose. You have to believe that you are destined for great (and good) things. Take a look at women like Coco Chanel or Oprah Winfrey – they believed they had a purpose in life. They wanted to make a difference, and they certainly did. To be a successful female entrepreneur you have to believe in yourself and believe that what you are doing is making a difference. That strong sense of purpose will be reflected in your business, which will only stand the test of time.
- Open to learning: This skill will go a long way in helping you grow a business. Be open to learning, you can learn from anyone and everyone. You don’t have to be an expert in a particular field but must acquire different skills to become a success story. So apart from learning from people, keep yourself abreast with things happening in the industry by reading up online.
- Passion: Successful business women are always passionate about what they do because they tend to create businesses around the things they enjoy. Oprah Winfrey suffered a difficult childhood, and then built a career around her passion to help others. Anita Roddick was passionate about environmental and social activism and her company, The Body Shop, was the first to prohibit the use of products tested on animals.
Find your own passion, believe in it and turn it into something you can really be proud of. As Anita Roddick once said; “To succeed you have to believe in something with such a passion that it becomes a reality”.
The kimono is a traditional Japanese garment that comes in form of full-length robes, usually worn by the Japanese for important festivals and formal occasions. A formal clothing style of Japanese culture that is usually associated with politeness, much like the English black tie code to formal events.
This fashion piece has, in the last couple of decades found its way into the global space of classic fashion, and just like many other classic pieces, it has been designed and remodeled by designers such as Alexander Wang, Herve Leger, and Isabel Marant, to name a few, creating a fora of designs, inspired former. The kimono has become a constant fashion piece in the wardrobe of many women, and almost every woman can lay claim to a kind of kimono or kimono inspired clothing, from the couture dresses with exorbitant kimono sleeves, to the kimono wrap dress, or the famous trendy kimono inspired jackets, and those classy kimono inspired blazers. Yes! You definitely own something inspired by a kimono.
During my final year at the university, I noticed a trend among the girls on campus that was funny and tricky, yet quite beautiful.
The kimono jackets and gowns were trendy amongst many female students, as it allowed them to wear whatever they want underneath while using the kimono jacket as a cover. Tricky as it seemed, it served the dual purpose of style and safety. You could not go wrong with that look, never odd or out of fashion and for this reason; it became a popular piece of fashion among female the students.
The kimono has since the early 2000’s joined the list of the popular fashion pieces that have been modified to inspire different fashion trends. Your first thought at the mention of the word kimono may usually be a colourful robe accompanied by a belted sash, but this fashion piece has long evolved beyond that trend on the global fashion stage.
When we talk about the modern day kimono, we do not refer to the traditional Japanese occasional garment (Kimono) that consists of a bogus upper and lower combination of fabrics that is long, loose, wide, and often tied with a sash. The modern-day kimono is a new trend of clothing jackets and gowns inspired by the traditional Japanese kimono that have been modeled to suit your need through the summer, spring, fall or winter. Yes! Designs that will make your eyes spark up, season after seasons.
he kimono has inspired so many designs that much like its origin, seems have a design for almost every occasion.
Now you might be thinking, “well… a kimono is not for my age”; I am about to shock you on this one.
It may surprise you to know that kimono jackets and its inspired clothing’s are perfect for all women irrespective of the age or size; and you should do a check on your wardrobe too; if you’ve bought something trendy in the last five years, chances are you already have a kimono and a kimono-inspired outfit, because much like that one style fits all jacket that we ladies love so much, they come in different styles, shapes, and sizes, and are perfect for you.
Whatever size you represent, tall, slim, and petite or full figured,you can still rock in a kimono outfit.
I’m guessing the popular American journalist Laura Jacobs did know what she meant after all, when she described a Kimono as – More Than Just a ‘Thing to Wear’– the meaning is indeed as irreducible as the garment.
Zhou Qunfei was born in 1970 and has established herself in the manufacturing industry after founding Lens Technology, one of the world’s major manufacturers of touchscreens. She is known as one of China’s richest self-made women.
While attending Shenzhen University where she took part-time courses, she worked for companies that were close to the university. During her studies, she earned certifications in accounting, computer operations, customs processing and even learned how to drive commercial vehicles.
Growing up, she had dreamed of becoming a fashion designer but found herself working for a small firm run by a family which specialized in making watch parts. With an earning of 180 Yuan per month, she was not satisfied with the working conditions and tendered her resignation just after three months with reasons why she could no longer continue with the firm. Impressed with her resignation letter, the factory chief offered her a promotion instead.
After some time, the factory folded and with the encouragement of her cousin, she went on to start up her own company in 1993 at the age of 22. The business started off as a family business with her brother, sister, their spouses and two cousins all working out of a three-bedroom apartment.
The new company worked towards providing customers with high-quality lenses for their watches with her looking into more advanced designs for the factory’s machinery.
Her growing company was then put on the map when in 2001 it gained a contract from Chinese electronics company, TCL Corporation to make screens for mobile phones. Now, she has started almost 11 new companies.
Business was beginning to pick up for her while she still produced watch lenses as she was approached by Motorola to design and develop glass screens for the Razr V3 mobile editions. This was during the transition in mobile phone technology from plastic to glass display screens.
Following this huge milestone, she decided to establish Lens Technology in 2003. She had chosen the name “lens” for the company so that it would easily turn up on searches when anyone was looking for where to get quality lenses.
Soon after, orders from HTC, Nokia, and Samsung started to come in and Zhou was on her way to becoming one of the outstanding game changers in touchscreen production. This feat was cemented after the company produced the touch screens for Apple’s iPhone during its entry into the market making it a dominant player in the industry. Till date, Apple watches still use lenses from Lens Technology.
Zhou Qunfei has risen to become one of the richest women in the technology sector who is still making cutting-edge advances. With her being also listed in many award listings like Forbes as #61 in 2016 Power Women, #205 in 2016 Billionaires (#9 in Hong Kong Billionaires for that year, #18 in 2015 China Rich List, and #30 in 2015 Richest in Tech. Fortune ranked her #18 on their 2016 Most Powerful Women of Asia-Pacific list, and she is a newcomer to the list. Bloomberg has ranked her as #211 out of the World’s Billionaires.
When asked what her hobby is, Zhou Qunfei has said that she considers her work to be her hobby but will sometimes make time to play ping pong and probably break a sweat while mountain climbing.
Her success story is one that has motivated a lot of migrant workers in China as she continues to leave her mark and make more strides in the world of technology.
Our bodies are hardwired to install habits. By making repetitive behaviors automatic, we free-up processing power for our brains. Instead of having to consciously decide to take each step on the trail home after a hunt, our ancestors adapted so that they could direct their attention to more urgent matters, like watching for predators in the distance.
Today, the power of habits can work for or against us, depending on whether we have Habits of Disease or Habits of Health installed. Something as simple as our posture comes down to habit. With a little bit of mindfulness, correcting your posture can actually ripple into other areas of your health, giving you an extra momentum for your workouts and even your emotional wellbeing.
Here are just a few of the benefits of proper posture:
- Sitting up straight might reduce stress and increase confidence. The idea of “fake it till you make it” might have some truth to it. Assuming a confident posture, like a superhero pose or simply sitting up straight might actually influence your brain chemistry in a positive way.
- Poor posture could lead to pain. According to the Mayo Clinic, leaving your body out of healthy alignment for long periods of time can strain muscles and support structures in your body, leading to aches and pains. Experiencing this sort of steady pain could discourage you from enjoying other healthy activities!
- Variety is the spice of life, even when it comes to posture. If you’re struggling with your posture, the problem might be that you spend too much time sitting, which in itself opens you up to a host of potential problems. If you take the time to stand, and walk around more often, you help guard yourself against a number of challenges associated with long periods of sitting still.
Fully correcting poor posture can actually take quite a bit of work. It’s possible that old injuries have forced your body into poor movement habits. You might also have areas of your body that are overly tight or perhaps even excessively weak that place additional strain on your posture as your body fights to compensate. For these reasons, a complete posture overhaul actually requires a broader lifestyle change that includes a balanced workout routine and a set of consistent maintenance movements and stretches.
To get you started, though, we can start simple. Even a simple win can be a big win, so don’t discount it. Try starting with these four tips:
- When you’re walking or standing, think about having a book on your head (yes, like they might have made you do in grade school). This visualization forces you to align your spines, hips, and shoulders to find a better balance. If you slouch, which is bad, the book falls. So back straight, chin up, and chest slightly forward as you pull your shoulders into a straighter line.
- If you’re sitting, a lot of the principles for walking apply too. Picture a book on your head, square your shoulders, and straighten out that slouch. The environment around you, however, is almost just as important. Use a chair with proper ergonomic support and set your keyboard in a comfortable position.
- Don’t forget about all of the in-between moments as well. If you’re driving, try to maintain proper posture. If you’re sitting for a long period of time, try to stand and walk around once or twice an hour even if it’s just to take a phone call.
- Talk to your physician about your health history and for tips about improving your posture that is specific to you. If you are experiencing chronic back pain or neck pain, some physical therapy or corrective exercises could potentially alleviate some of that discomfort, and your physician will have the insights into your health history to help you identify those opportunities.
I hope that you are sitting up straighter by now. That’s great! Keep it up!
Once upon a time in the city of Fajardo, Puerto Rico, a pathfinder was born. Her parents, Ana Delia and Antonio Coello named her Antonia Coello; the first of three children, and now known as Antonia Novello, she went on to become the first woman and first Hispanic to serve as Surgeon General of the United State.
Antonia was diagnosed with a medical condition at birth, which caused her so many pains while growing up, and interrupted the beautiful moments of her teenage days. She suffered congenital megacolon, an abnormality of the large intestine, which could only be corrected via a surgery procedure, she was made aware of the need for the procedure at age eight (8), but having lost her father at the same time,which lefther widowed mother with Antonia and her three siblings to take care of, it took another ten (10) years for the surgery to take place, frequently landing her in hospitals through her teenage years.
Ana Delia, Antonia’s was a schoolteacher who later became a junior high school and high school principal, primarily raising Antonia and her sisters on her own, she often stressed the importance of education. Delia later remarried.
Antonia’s health condition which was supposed to be corrected at the time when she turned eight put her through so much pain because her family could not afford the long trip to the surgical hospital, and she had to spend part of every summer getting interim treatment at a local hospital.
During this waiting period, Antonia was never deterred as she took her studies seriously, and made up her mind to become a doctor so that she could help other children suffering from health problems.Her experience with the disease left such an impact on her that she vowed to become a doctor so that “no other person would have to wait 18 years for surgery.
Life has so many challenges that may never end if we refuse to do something to it, but when we decide not to let our struggles define us, we are set for victory. Another interesting part about being great is using your struggles as a stepping stone to your great future.
In spite of the long-lasting sickness, Antonia was diligent with her studies, a bright student who excelled academically. Perhaps the sickness must have caused her to be reserved and sensitive because she was known as that rational child who had a good sense of humor and was very active in school activities.
Being the daughter of an educationist, she was well guided academically, and Delia, who always stressed the importance of education,stood by her daughter making sure that the disease was not a barrier for her to excel. She personally took her daughter tutorials on math and science, making sure that she was properly managed irrespective of the plague.
At age 15 Antonia graduated from high school and was admitted to study at the University of Puerto Rico – Rio Pedras. At age 18, she took a surgery to correct her medical condition which was not successful but the surgery was repeated when she was 20 at the renowned Mayo Clinic and this time, it was finally resolved to make her free to live normal after 20 years of waiting.
Anthoniagraduated from the University of Puerto Rico in 1965, with a Bachelor of Science degree. She decided to fulfill her dreams when she went on to study medicine at the same university. In 1970 Antonia graduated and got married to Joseph Novello.
Novello was a U.S Navy flight surgeon who changed to being a psychiatrist and a radio talk show host. The couple continued to live in Puerto Rico until Antonia was ready to begin her pediatrics internship training in nephrology (the study of the kidneys) at the University of Michigan Medical Center. The young couple moved to Ann Arbor in Michigan.
A year after she started her internship, Antonia won the Pediatrics Department Intern of the Year Award, as the first woman to receive the award. She remained at the pediatrics in Michigan until 1974, and continued her postgraduate work at Georgetown University before joining the private sector.
Antoniastarted her own private practice in Springfield, Virginia in 1976 where she worked as a pediatrician. She however came to the realization, that she did not have enough emotional detachment for the job,and sheeventually terminated her practice. In an interview thereafter, she stated that “When the pediatrician cries as much as the parents do, then you know it’s time to get out.”
She joined the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps in 1978, working with the National Institute of Arthritis, Metabolism and Digestive Disorders at the National Institutes of Health. She was eventually made the deputy director of the Institute of Child Health and Human Development, where she focused on pediatric AIDS. She stayed with the pediatrics at Georgetown University Hospital and in 1982 earned her degree in public health from Johns Hopkins School of Hygiene and Public Health.
She drafted legislation for the Organ Transplantation Procurement Act of 1984, while serving with the U.S. Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources.
In the year 1990, on the 9th of March precisely she began her tenure as the Surgeon General of the United State, appointed by the former President George H. W. Bush.
Antonia became the very first woman and the first Hispanic to hold the position.
She served in her capacity dispatching her duties as she was required.
There is nothing impossible for the determined person who is persistent in doing what is right and at the right time.
Eleanor Roosevelt, the renowned American politician, activist, and longest-serving First Lady of the United States, once said; “We gain strength, courage, and confidence by each experience in which we really stop to look fear in the face … we must do that which we think we cannot.”
In recent years, there have been records of elected young persons into prominent leadership positions in countries around the world, such as therecent ex-president of the United States, President, Barack Obama who ruled the country at age 42 and Emmanuel Macron, the current president of France, who was elected in May 2017.at the age of 40.
Youthful leadership which is the “in thing” in many political scenes across the globe, is gradually invading the political scene of Africa without putting out the women.
On the Trailblazer category for this week, we celebrate the young fresh flower in the political scene of Botswana who is no other person than Ms. BogoloKenewendo, the newly appointed Minister for Investment, Trade and Industry Ministry.
Gender inequality is evidently being worked on but there is still too much to be done. So we do not hesitate to celebrate unique stories like that of BogoloKenewendo, as a way of pushing for gender equality in the world.
While we celebrate the matriarchs who have gone ahead to confirm the statement that says “what a man can do a woman will do better”, we also commend our young and emerging diamonds who are on the scene, making way for the next generation. So that their stories can serve as a gear to motivate other women,that aresimilarly blazing the trail of leadership.
Bogolo is a woman in her very early 30’s who hails from Motopi, a little village in Botswana. She was raised in Botswana and she had her early education there.
She is an alumnus of the University of Botswana, where she graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Economics, after her Bachelor’s degree, she moved to Brighton, England to obtain an MSc in International Economics from the University of Sussex being a recipient of a prestigious Chevening Scholarship in 2012.
Passionate about her profession, she worked as an economic consultant at Econsult Botswana.
Bologo is a trailblazer, who is passionate about what she envisions, she stands as a driver of development in areas like poverty eradication, reducing inequalities and empowering women and youth. In the course of her career, she lived and worked as a trade economist at the ministry of trade and industry in Ghana.
Bogolo started to steal the world’s attention when she became the youngest member of parliament in Botswana in 2016 being appointed by the former president of the country, Ian Khama.
Her uniqueness makes her eligible for authentic positions and she is always the best candidate for the job, having handled several high-level positions and projects in Botswana. In September 2009 Bogolo was one of two Botswana youth delegates at the 64th Session of the United Nations General Assembly and was nominated to present a statement of African youth to the Secretary-General of the United Nations.
She has been privileged to partake of prestigious programmes including the Foreign and Commonwealth Office International Leaders Programme in 2016, A variation of the US President Obama’s YALI for Young Women Leaders in 2011.
Also in 2011, she was part of the young African women leaders’ forum which was hosted by Michelle Obama.
The forum inspired her to establish MolayaKgosi Trust, a women leadership and mentorship programme which aimed at mentoring and exposing young women to experienced and successful women in this country.
She was also part of the former president Ian Khama’s Private-Public Dialogue structure, the High-Level Consultative Council which is a structure aimed at addressing the challenges of the private sector in Botswana.
And the list is numerous.
Recently, she became the first youngest Minister ever appointed in Botswana’s cabinet, a position that gladdens the heart of many African who look forward to the replication of such development in other African states.
Still blazing the trail, Bogolo continues to shine the light on Youth Leadership, on the African continent.