Grace Bonney’s new book, In the Company of Women is one of the most inspiring books I’ve ever read. For those of you who haven’t heard about it yet, it’s a compilation of interviews with 100 female entrepreneurs in creative industries. Grace is the founder and editor of Design Sponge, so the book is also peppered with inspiring shots of the work spaces of all the women featured. The book is refreshingly (!) diverse and everyone offers up helpful, actionable advice that I believe is useful to everyone–not just entrepreneurs, and certainly not just women. I’ve actually taken to randomly reading one interview every day before I start my work day, as an almost ‘i-ching‘ kind of exercise. I thought I’d pull some of my favorite quotes I’ve read so far to share with you all today. Also, I was super honored when Grace reached out to see if I wanted to be featured in the book and as an addendum to today’s post I’ve included out-takes from my interview answers that didn’t make it into the book.
“You have to be resourceful, work hard, be kind and constantly innovate. You never know who a stranger actually is and what they may mean to your business later on, so you have to treat everyone you come across with respect and never burn bridges. You also need to be true to yourself when designing and editing and explore your own story as a source of inspiration, as that is what will give your work more integrity and make you stand out from the crowd.” ~Tanya Aguiñiga, Furniture Designer / Maker
“People Often go into business because they love something: baking pies, building furniture, designing clothes. The reality of being a business owner is that your occupation is not Pie Maker, Furniture Builder or Clothing Designer. Your occupation is Entrepreneur . If you don’t love business, you will not love your job. ” ~Mary Going, Fashion Designer
Also from Mary “Hire slow, fire fast.” (attributed to her mentor Michael Bush)
“The biggest lesson I’ve learned is to prepare for the long haul, the rise and fall, and let neither define your sense of self.” ~Karen Young
“Grow Organically. Don’t get ahead of yourself.” ~Eileen Fisher
Tina Roth Eisenberg‘s favorite quote: “The best way to complain is to make things” ~James Murphy
Outtakes from my interview:
What is the biggest sacrifice you’ve made in starting or running your business?
At what point in your life did you first learn about your field of work? What called you to it?
In The Company of Women is at the very top of my holiday gift list. It’s an inspiring and important book that Grace did an impeccable job of pulling together. So excited to be a par of it and this exciting time for female entrepreneurs.