The women entrepreneurs are special because they not only have to face the same challenges as their male counterparts, but sometimes they must overcome the gender biases that exist in society and sometimes, balance their role as business owners with their role as wife and mother.
Without a doubt, female entrepreneurs have to make use of superpowers and fantastic abilities to handle their different facets. There are fictional women who have excellent teachings for entrepreneurs due to their strength, wisdom, and leadership skills.
Lessons from Fictional Women
Meet 10 fictional women with great lessons for women in business.
1. The formation is not delimiting (Black Widow, Marvel Cinematic Universe)
The character of Natasha Romanoff (played by Scarlett Johanson) has become an icon of modern female power in recent years. This character has great lessons because she managed to transform a past full of pain and a dark formation into her strength to do good.
Many female entrepreneurs, especially from more traditional societies, have to overcome an education where women are not considered to be business figures. Like the Black Widow, you can find the strength to build your future in your past and not let it define you when you do your job.
Another of Black Widow’s great lessons is that despite being a strong – and sometimes violent – character, she never loses her femininity. In fact, on several occasions she is part of what makes her stand out. There are some businesswomen who think that to get respect they have to be tough or compromise who they are. It is not true, since it is not the same to be firm and faithful to be cruel.
2. You can play in a man’s world… and win (Agent Carter, Marvel’s Agent Carter)
There are those who say that Peggy Carter (Captain America’s love interest) is the first well-made superhero.
Agent Carter not only has to deal with an evil secret society like HYDRA, she also has to put up with the sexism present in the post war world. Although she is an intelligent woman and a capable soldier, she often has to work twice as hard to be half of herself recognized.
The real world is not much different. Many times, women entrepreneurs must work harder to convince investors and clients, especially in macho societies.
However, and in the same way that Carter does, they can also get out without the need for a man to rescue them.
3. Being strong doesn’t mean stop feeling (Xena, Xena: Warrior Princess)
Xena was one of those rare strong female characters we had in the ’90s who was not only able to beat her enemies, she could also feel with all her heart. This legendary heroine had to face terrible creatures and suffer great losses and yet she kept going without stopping.
The warrior princess knew the importance of being strong in a world dominated by men, however, she was also an extremely faithful person to the people who loved her. At the end of the day, outside of her armor was a woman who was very strong but because of the greatness of her heart.
4. Know your strengths (Katniss Everdeen, The Hunger Games)
When we think of Katniss, we usually picture her with her bow and arrow. In her home she was a good hunter, a skill that helped her survive in the arena of the Hunger Games.
If you’re going to open a business, make sure it’s based on the skills you have. That is, if your forte is not direct sales, you may need to try a model that does not require face-to-face interaction with other people, something like an ecommerce business.
Of course you can prepare and study to develop your skills. Don’t let ignorance, the one that is remediable, stop you.
5. You don’t have to hide your intelligence (Hermione Granger, Harry Potter)
The smartest witch of her generation may have started out crying in the Hogwarts bathrooms, but she soon decided to take her intelligence and turn it into her greatest asset. She knew that she liked to study and took advantage of it, something we don’t see very often in our society.
Hermione proved that being attractive is not synonymous with being dumb. Recognize what you know and use it as a source of confidence in your daily life. In the end, someone who knows is more interesting than a person who only pretends.
6. Be an inspiring leader (Daenerys Targaryen, game of Thrones)
As the last living Targaryen, Daenerys fights strongly for her right to control the Seven Kingdoms in the same way her father did. The khaleesi has survived the death of her family and her beloved husband, and she honors them by transforming from a timid child to the great commander of a fearsome army that she fuels by her strength and warmth.
Daenerys is what every CEO should be: a leader who inspires her followers, with a conviction that makes her vision the shared mission of her entire team.
7. The importance of feeding a good team (Temperance Brennan, bones)
“Bones” is not only a specialist in her field and has managed to find the balance between personal life and work by collaborating with her husband. She is also a specialist in bringing out the best features of her team.
Brennan’s collaborators work as an integrated unit since they know each other’s capabilities thanks to their boss being able to praise (and scold) them when necessary. They know that “Bones” does not have bad workers on their team and that is why they trust the work of the other.
8. There is always a silver lining (Violet Crawley, Downton Abbey)
The famous Dowager Countess of Downton Abbey has seen her family estate come close to collapse hundreds of times. Although she is a representative of a bygone era, she is not afraid to sacrifice traditions if it will achieve her goals, which usually have to do with the happiness of her family.
As an entrepreneur you can be calculating like Violet, in the sense that you can study all sides of a situation and find out how you can take advantage of them for your business.
You should never let circumstances overwhelm you.
9. Stand up for what you believe in (Mulan, mulan)
This traditional Chinese heroine, who later became a Disney Princess, sacrificed everything she was to fight for something bigger than herself: her father’s life.
Like Mulan, you can’t know if at the end of the day you’re going to succeed but you have to fight to try, sometimes leaving your comfort zone forever.
If Mulan hadn’t fought for her ideals, even against what her family wanted, she would never have met her friends, found love, and ultimately saved China.
10. Don’t be afraid to be yourself (Mérida, Brave)
Merida was a princess trapped in a life that required her to be in a way that was not in accordance with what she really wanted.
As an entrepreneur, you must have the strength to follow your own path and do what you really love, try different things until you find what really suits you, and when you find it, do your best.
Remember that it is your life, your business. Be brave in directing it.
Do you know another female character who leaves entrepreneurial lessons?