"Impossibility is only someone's opinion and not a fact."
This is just one of the amazing messages that we took away from the League of Extraordinary Women's incredible Run the World 2015 conference a few days ago. The beautiful thing about it? It was actually from a male speaker who was stepping in for his wife who had fallen ill on the day. Another message that was expressed at the conference was that the League of Extraordinary Women isn't all about women being better than men or being a man-hater's club - it is simply about women and men being equal and men are always welcome at all of their events. In fact, most of the speakers on the day spoke of their male partners supporting their business journey or in many cases being an actual business partner (and Matcha Maiden itself is in fact composed of a couple who both contribute contrasting but complementary skills to make the business into the beautiful matcha family that it is today).
Life is 10% what happens to you, 90% what you make of it. Gillian Franklin, The Heat Group.
We only started with that reflection to encourage any of our male readers to continue reading, as there were so many invaluable and insightful take aways from the conference this year that anyone and everyone can benefit from. Particularly for those matcha mates who are interested in starting their own business or have already done so, you couldn't have chosen 9 more engaging, wise and inspirational speakers than the ones we were so lucky to hear from. There was such an energetic, positive and infectious buzz in the room over the course of the day as the crowd heard from a range of speakers with different backgrounds, from different age groups, in different industries with different experiences. But all of them were as inspiring and interesting as each other with a wealth of knowledge and insights to share with us all. As with many League events that we have attended, the messages were relevant to people at all stages of their journey too - even if you didn't have a business at all, you would have walked away with renewed enthusiasm and passion for your life and the possibilities laying ahead in the future.
Life is too short not to live your dream. Pia Muehlenbeck, Slinkii Athletic.
Over an 8am to 6pm day, there were just too many themes and messages covered to share them all in one single post. From financing a start up to social media tips, from disaster management to staff strategies, and from personal relationships to work-life balance, every element of entrepreneurial life was covered in some way. We thought it would be best to start with 3 highlight points from each speaker for those who weren't able to be there with the promise of more detailed posts to come over the next few weeks. But first, we must express our gratitude to The League and the role it has played in the Matcha Maiden journey. We were so proud to be a VIP sponsor of the event and also to have a video featured of our mama, Sarah, on the day (hope you all enjoyed your goodies in those epic 5kg+ goodie bags!!!!). The video that was featured can be viewed below and our highlight moments from the conference will follow - enjoy!
Gillian Franklin - Founder and Managing Director, The Heat Group
- Be clear not just about the next step in your life, but the one after. Look further ahead than you are now, set your career and life goals for that point in time and then map your life plan backwards to achieve them.
- The value of networking is infinite - ask yourself, "Who is in my net and how hard am I working them?"
- Life is 10% what happens to you, and 90% what you make of it.
Photo from The League facebook page - professional shots to come.
Jane Cay - Founder and Director, Birdsnest
- "No one cares how much you know, when they realise how much you care." Theodore Roosevelt
- You have to believe in two things - find the thing you believe in and then believe that you can go and do it!
- Beliefs either propel you forward or hold you back. Surround yourself with people who believe in you, because there will be moments of self-doubt.
Amanda Walker Koronczyk - Founder, Lord of the Fries
- Criticism is an opportunity.
- What goes around comes around - you have to GIVE in your business.
- When working with your partner (and I also think this applies to all other relationships too), accept each others' work styles. We don't all have the same methods or habits, so let the other person be their best in their own way.
Elizabeth Briedis - Designer, Spell and the Gypsy Collective
- There are three key factors for business growth - the first is authenticity, funnel your true passions into your business.
- The second is that 6 hands are better than 4 - you will realise you can't do everything yourself and expanding will allow you to work ON and not IN the business.
- The third is that you must embrace the online world. Spell has a 70/30 online retail/wholesale split to secure very strong margins.
Photo from The League facebook page - professional shots to come.
Daniel Flynn - Co-founder, Thankyou Group
- Team work makes the dream work! (Demonstrated by the mere fact that he stepped in for the lovely Justine on the day)
- Success means turning stumbling blocks into stepping stones
- The fear of failure has killed more dreams than failure itself - don't ask "what if it fails?" Ask "what if it works?"
Tammy May - Founder and Director, My Budget
- Educate the market
- What gets measured gets done
- Be genuinely nice to people
Eli Censor - Founder, Nutrition Bar and KX Cycle
- Don't say anything negative about anyone, it will always get back to them
- Make it about the movement, not about you. Leadership is over-glorified - treat your first follower as an equal. (Watch this amazing YouTube video that Eli shared - so insightful!)
- Thinking lucky makes you lucky - everything you do comes back at you
Catherine Van Der Meulen - Founder and CEO, Think Business Solutions
- Build your business based on love.
- Create an emotional contract with your customers.
- Find your purpose - have purpose in everything you do.
Pia Muehlenbeck - Founder, Slinkii Athletic
- You can build a brand without a budget using social media. Create great content and that becomes your currency. Your users are so highly engaged - unlike ads, they CHOSE to follow you.
- Start really small and grow organically, don't wait for perfection or you will never get started. Brands evolve and grow all the time, everything else can be worked on.
- Life is too short not to live your dream.
To read more about the League of Extraordinary Women, visit their website.