Joining She Takes on the World is Nicole Williams, author of the book ‘Girl on Top: Your Guide to Turning Dating Rules into Career Success.’ Nicole is also founder of The Works, which appeared alongside She Takes on the World on Forbes’ Top 100 Websites for Women. Nicole has been featured in Elle Magazine, Cosmopolitan, Glamour and the Wall Street Journal.
Katelyn Nadeau: Nicole! Tell me about ‘Girl On Top’. Where did the concept come from?
Nicole Williams: Girl on Top was inspired by a gift my girlfriends gave to me after I had left my husband in the hopes of getting me back in the dating game. In the basket of goodies was a pile of dating books and as I flipped through The Rules, He’s Not That Into You -all the classics –I quickly realized these dating rules are actually brilliant career strategies! It’s all about human nature and the same way you don’t want to give away your milk for free on a first date with a man, you don’t want to give your milk (talent) away for free to your employer –in both cases you end up being taken advantage of and disrespected.
KN: You’ve spoke on many national TV programs offering advice to young women. In your opinion, what top three obstacles do young women face in the workplace and what advice would you provide them?
NW: First and foremost, it comes from listening to the media hype and not getting out there and trying, really trying to get a jobThe unemployment numbers are real and it’s definitely going to take discipline and perseverance but there is opportunity out there…but you’re not going to find it on the couch. It’s all about putting yourself out there, meeting as many people as you can and letting them know you’re looking for opportunity. Jobs come through people and relationships –don’t be shy.
Second, of course your age can be an issue but you can work against this. You can overcome a lack of experience with enthusiasm and by communicating work ethic and a commitment to develop skills on your own time. One of the areas of expertise that young women have a huge advantage over most older women is an ability to use and leverage social media (I’m speaking from experience – rely heavily on my young staff to keep me up to speed). Make sure you focus on all the digital expertise you have to bring to the table – doesn’t matter that you learned it for personal reasons – talk about how you can use it to the company’s advantage.
Finally, and this is again related to age, it’s the ability to taken seriously and your posture, the way you dress, the heels you choose to wear –this all contributes to not only other’s opinions of you, but how you feel about yourself. You have about 2.2 seconds to make an impact and you want everything working to your advantage! Dress for success.
KN: What made you take the jump into entrepreneurship and what did you do before pursuing The Works?
NW: It was the business I was looking for. As a career-focused woman I was looking for the resources and community that would make my life easier and career more successful. I read a quote by Tom Robbins in his book The Jitterbug Perfume; “The price of self-destiny is never cheap and in certain circumstances it’s unthinkable. But to achieve the marvelous, it’s precisely the unthinkable that must be thought”. Those two sentences changed my life. In an instant I knew my destiny was to build a business for career women.
KN: What is a day like “in your heels?”
NW: Well let’s be honest…they are high! Each and every day is different. Right now a lot of my focus is on the process of getting Girl on Top transformed into a feature film. It’s been optioned by Dan Jinks (producer of American Beauty, Milk and other great films) and we’re working on finding the right writer. The other really fun thing I’m focused on is promoting the line of clothing I’m endorsing at The Limited. I love (and personally) wear the clothes and each month get to travel to different cities to meet with young women in the store who come for a fun fashion show, discounts and the opportunity to shop and network all at the same time.
KN: Thanks so much Nicole for your thoughtful advice and joining us here at She Takes on the World! To learn more about Nicole visit her website: www.nicolewilliams.com.