How to Help Women Achieve Economic Equality
FROM A CONVERSATION WITH CEO FRAN PASTORE ON THE REINVENT YOURSELF PODCAST
Fran Pastore grew up in a tight, male-dominated Italian family. She watched how all her female relatives were disempowered and forced to become dependent on a male for their future. Fran talks to CoveyClub founder Lesley Jane Seymour about how and why she decided to gather her fate into her own hands by applying to college (her mother stopped talking to her because of it!) and eventually opened the Women’s Business Development Council of Connecticut that supplies free support services for female business owners.
Fran’s Top Reinvention Tips
1. Surround yourself with people who have skills and knowledge you don’t.
In thinking about how I was going to align my passion with reinventing myself, I focused in on what my skills were. I actually found out that Connecticut was the only state in the country that didn’t have a resource to help women start and scale businesses. And I thought, “Wow I could do this.” I have the passion, I have the organizational skills that were needed. I didn’t have a handful of the other skills that were needed – I didn’t have good financial acumen, I hadn’t gone to business school, but I had so many people around me that had those skills. And that’s kind of how I was born as an entrepreneur.
2. Expect the unexpected.
You may set out to reinvent yourself in one way, and accidentally reinvent yourself in another. As you are searching for that next move in your transition, don’t think that everything is going to be black and white, and don’t think that the path you set out on is going to be the path you end up sticking with.
3. Get your personal financial house in order.
Economic self-reliance is the best gift you can give yourself. For me, the cash flow issue as a business owner remains my single biggest source of stress. And so planning to make sure you are setting yourself up for success gives you peace of mind. We can never avoid pitfalls, but we can mitigate the risks that come with some of the unexpected opportunities or challenges.
The Women Behind the Women Running in 2018 (TheCovey, October 2018 issue)
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