Does the Forbes 30 under 30 list inspire you like it inspires me? Sometimes it makes me feel woefully under accomplished, but most of the time it gives me a nice little boost of motivation, seeing the game-changers, leaders, and outside-of-the-box thinkers that are changing their respective industries and making a difference for the future. They’re going to be successful, no matter what. And that’s really motivational.
Who says that you need experience to change the game? Most of these women are under thirty, defining their roles for themselves and showing up to get sh*t done, no matter what. If you weren’t inspired by the 30 under 30 list, consider yourself about to be. Because this year, the women in the list are showing us how it’s done.
Here are a few of our favorite lessons from this year’s 30 under 30 in Europe and the U.S.A.
1. Stay true to yourself
Gilda Ambrosio became known first and foremost as a fashion influencer and stylish It-girl. The brand she created with Georgia Tordini, Attico, is the reason why she’s made it to the 30 under 30 list. “We didn’t want to do any kind of pre-launch research into what consumers respond to or what the market wants,” Gilda and Georgia admitted, “We just did what felt true to us. As romantic or trite as it seems, we like to think that the recognition we’ve gotten so far is as much people’s [sense] that we’re being true to ourselves as it is their attraction to the clothing.”
Often, in an attempt to create something new, people fall into the trap that they have to be exactly the same as everyone else. Gilda and Georgia knew they could create beautiful dresses that were unlike what had been seen before and, using their social media channels, could promote the brand well. It’s a smart strategy to build up a following and use it to promote a business, and one that paid off. Matches Fashion snapped Attico up, and saw demand for the brand rise.
2. Don’t think, just do
Quinn Shephard is just 23 years old, and already has writing, production, and directing credits on a film she started writing when she was fifteen. “I always knew that I was moving very fast as an artist. I started working on my film when I was fifteen. I knew I wanted it to be my first feature, and I was acting, and I just wanted to get out of high school as fast as I could. I graduated a year early and I just felt very eager to jump in.”
Sometimes, it’s great to sit and learn about what you need to do. Other times it’s better to jump right in and just learn by doing. Quinn knew she wanted to direct a film and star in it, so she went out of her way to just do it, even though she wasn’t sure how.
3. It’s never too late to learn
Danielle Giuzio started her eponymous fashion label when she was just 23 with $1000 saved up from a tax return and pay from a retail job. She had the idea, she had a graphic designer at her disposal, she just had to make it work.
“I wasn’t really able to apply things I learned in school to starting my own business, so when I got out of school, I would go to Barnes and Noble’s business section. I would get a bunch of regular sales books, then go to the Starbucks inside and just read and read and take pictures of the parts that I thought were important.” If you want to make something happen, you can’t go wrong with learning and reading as much as you can while you work on it. Danielle confesses that most of her business books are on her phone now. If you feel like you want to do something, you should go for it.
4. Trust your gut
Liza Koshy started off on Vine, the platform that allowed six-second videos to be uploaded. Vine exploded, but it didn’t last forever, and Liza had to take her popular videos elsewhere. “The worst advice I’ve ever received was ‘Don’t post on YouTube, it’s dying,’” says Koshy, who earned an estimated seven figures in 2017, thanks largely to her online output.
Because she didn’t listen to that advice and posted a few things here and there, she grew a huge fanbase of young YouTubers and gained so many opportunities from acting to hosting TV shows. She considered the advice not to start posting videos on YouTube and did it anywhere, increasing her skills in both videoing and acting/presenting the more she filmed. If she’d listened to that advice, she absolutely wouldn’t be where she is today.
5. Be prepared to problem solve
Dani Roche is the 25-year-old founder of creative agency Kastor & Pollux and has been steadily growing her empire. She told MissBish, “Every day is a mixed bag of new challenges. This is difficult, because being emotionally stable and mentally focused is a necessity. However, the unpredictable nature of my job really gives me endless opportunities to thrive. I’m constantly forced to find innovative ways to problem solve and move forward. One of the most challenging parts of owning a business is the lack of separation of personal and business relationships, and not knowing which lane I’m meant to stay in. However, over the years I’ve learned that over-communicating is better than not, and being honest will always trump internalizing for fear of conflict. As a result, I’ve been able to really fight for what I want and believe in, and I’ve been able to grow as a creative, as a leader, and as a friend as well.”
It’s important that no matter how hard you work, you need to focus on yourself and be creative in the ways that you problem solve. Owning your own business is literally just one problem after another that you need to tackle. Learn to fight fires every single day.
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