The No. 1 Trait of Successful Women Entrepreneurs Around the World

A week ago, Anita Newton featured her interview with our founder, Rania Anderson, on Inc.com, titled The No. 1 Trait of Successful Women Entrepreneurs Around the World.

undeterred-book-cover-renderingIn celebration of International Women’s Day this Sunday (March 8), I had a chance to interview Rania Habiby Anderson, author of a fascinating book, Undeterred: The Six Success Habits of Women in Emerging Economies. Anderson spent over four years researching and interviewing more than 250 successful career women and entrepreneurs in developing countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America, Eastern Europe, and the Middle East. Her objective? To understand the key traits that caused these women to be successful while so many of their peers failed to meet their dreams…

Screen Shot 2015-03-12 at 9.24.06 PMWhat was the most surprising finding of the book?

Rania: Four years ago when I started my research, I had no idea whether I would find commonality among women in growth economies. Each country, each region, each continent, each culture is unique. I did not know if there would be similarities. But I found that the challenges women face around the world are very similar–it’s the degree and severity of the challenge that varies. The obstacles these women face are seemingly insurmountable, yet what is commonplace among all of them is this: They are undeterred, they persevere.

The obstacles these women face are seemingly insurmountable, yet what is commonplace among all of them is this: They are undeterred, they persevere.

Not a surprising finding for me, but I think readers of your article would find surprising: many women in growth economies face less intense pressure in juggling their home life because of extended family support, living close to family members, and the prevalence of domestic help.

What can Western entrepreneurs learn from the experience of these women?

Rania: Two factors, resilience and tenacity, can help overcome seemingly intractable obstacles. Regardless of where someone lives, their gender, or how difficult the environment may be, an entrepreneur with the right mindset, skills, and network can overcome (or work around) almost any obstacle in their way. Any aspiring entrepreneur can look to these founders in the developing world and be inspired.

Sunday is International Women’s Day. What are your thoughts of this important day for women?

Rania: This is an opportunity to celebrate achievements of women while calling for greater equality. There are millions of educated women entrepreneurs and corporate women working at every level in growth economies. These women, and the millions more like them, are graduating from universities around the world and are the future workforce of the global economy. If we guide them and develop these women, we can close the global talent shortage.

Companies that fail to effectively recruit, develop and retain educated women in growth economies will be severely hampered and challenged to meet their growth objectives. Women in growth economies face the same types of challenges as their Western counterparts–it’s the severity of the challenge that’s different. I wrote this book to help offer tools and encourage action to help advance and recognize women across the globe.

Read the full interview on Inc.com.

Learn more about UNDETERRED or order a copy here.

Erin Risner

Erin Risner

Director of Community Engagement

Writer. Creative. Brand Strategist. Content Curator. Social Media and Marketing Maven. Passionate about connecting with women around the world and telling their success stories.