Jo Malone: The female entrepreneurs who inspire us
As a woman running a business that is all about empowering others to live, learn and thrive it’s hugely important to me to inspire you all by showing you that there is no set path when it comes to making a success of your passion. I decided to approach women who have interesting and varied stories to tell about their experience of running their own business and asked them all exactly the same questions.
Their answers are as unique as they are and give a fascinating insight into what makes them tick as women, and as businesswomen. Some run huge companies with hundreds of staff, others are just starting out on their journey, but I know all of them will inspire you with their determination, tenacity and passion for what they do.
We will be bringing you a different woman every day this week, all of them united in being the very thing we love – they are all on fire!
Jo Malone, CBE
Described as an ‘English scent maverick’ and the woman responsible for creating some of the world’s most loved fragrances.
The name of Jo Malone is synonymous with fragrance, but while the brand she’s no longer part of still bears her name, few people know the heart and soul behind the person who created it. Walking away and starting again from scratch is something that many of us dream of doing, but it’s only those with a true entrepreneurial spirit who dare to, as Jo has done with her company Jo Loves.
Jo answered my questions with honesty and from the heart, and I think is the perfect person to round up our week celebrating entrepreneurs who are consistently pushing themselves to grow, in every way.
A huge thank you to everyone who took part this week, they are prime examples of women living, learning and thriving – which is everything we stand for here at This Girl Is On Fire.
1. What job did your parents do?
My father was an artist, a magician and a gambler and my mum was a beautician so between the two of them, a very eclectic childhood!
2. Did you choose your vocation or did it choose you?
Not sure really – I always had a love for beauty and loved doing skincare – I think at first, I was just trying to survive and get by but it soon grew to become my best friend.
3. Who was your role model growing up?
Madam Lubatti – the wonderful woman who taught me to make face creams, appreciate life and always try to give my very best.
4. Who is your role model now?
I don’t really have one, but I admire everyone who has that get up and go attitude and takes one step in front of another everyday towards their dreams and goals.
5. What’s the best advice anyone has ever given you and how did you use it?
Oprah Winfrey once said to me ‘Stamp your identity on everything you do’ and I have lived with this every day and always try and bring my personality, character and abilities to all that I do.
6. When did you consider yourself an entrepreneur (and can you spell it?)
I absolutely cannot spell it, however, I do know what the heart of an entrepreneur is – I love to walk in the footsteps of entrepreneur thinking and I consider myself very much a pioneer in the industry that I have chosen.
7. What was your biggest challenge when you started out and how did you overcome it?
In the beginning, I inherited a family debt and for whatever reasons, it was my responsibility at the age of eighteen to pay it off, but I did – every single penny. I still have the letter that confirms the debt was cleared.
8. If you could go back to when you started and give yourself one piece of advice, what would it be?
Enjoy the journey more – don’t be in such a hurry to get to the next stage. Treasure the small steps of success as much as the leap of the life changing deals that occur.
9. What’s your favourite business quote?
“Man cannot discover new oceans unless he has the courage to lose sight of the shore’’ – André Gide.
10. What do you want your legacy to be? What do you want people to say about you after you’re gone?
‘Jo Malone CBE was a woman who never gave up on her dreams and bought the very best of her creative self to the world as well as helping change fragrance forever’
This is our final female entrepreneur for Global Entrepreneurship Week, we hope you have enjoyed reading them as much as we enjoyed working with them. And to all you budding female entrepreneurs out there – “you only have one life, so spend it wisely, be bold and chase your dreams” – Andrea McLean x