ARNA TALKS TO FLEUR MADDEN CEO AND FOUNDER OF FREELANCING GEMS
What is something you've learned about yourself this year?
I have been a CEO for 18 years and after I sold my last company The Red Republic I was tired and burnt out. I really didn't want my legacy to be that I was just a wonderful CEO for an agency, I knew I had more in me. I spent 2 years resting, rejuvenating you might say and looking at different opportunities. I am so pleased I didn't rush the process because I am where I am meant to be right now and the lesson I learnt is there is always time for a career evolution, but don't rush it and trust the timing of your life.
What do you love about yourself?
My hair and my passion, I am lover in life and in business.
When we do reach gender equality, what does this world look like to you?
The fact we have to talk about diversity and companies that need a diversity policy means we have a long way to go. I think a world where gender equality exists means equal opportunity and equal pay... very simplistically.
What do you believe are the behaviours that hold women back?
Self limiting beliefs, not having the support around them to take risks, not having the business tools to grow their business.
What has been your boldest move to date?
I sold one of my businesses to a global publicly listed company. I wasn't thinking BIG like that when I first thought about a sale, but when I opened up my thinking there were so many more opportunities. Don't play small. I also think launching Freelancing Gems is bold. There are existing freelancer networks, but none that focus on women. We are coming in and doing it differently, that is a risk, but I am a big believer that as a new and dynamic company we have the opportunity to do it better.
What's your call to action for women?
Make a name for yourself, then out grow it and don't play small!