Marissa Mayer: Advice for Female Entrepreneurs

Marissa Mayer was kind enough to give some advice & tips for female entrepreneurs @Social Loco Conference.  We also asked her about how to handle failure.

Marissa Mayer is the Vice President of Location and Local Services at Google. Previously she was Vice President of Search Product and User Experience.  Marissa joined Google in 1999 as Google’s first female engineer, where she led the user interface and web server teams at that time. Her efforts have included designing and developing Google’s search interface, internationalizing the site to more than 100 languages, defining Google News, Gmail, and Orkut, and launching more than 100 features and products on Google.com.  Prior to joining Google, Mayer worked at the UBS research lab (Ubilab) in Zurich, Switzerland, and at SRI International in Menlo Park, California.  You can find Marissa on Twitter @marissamayer

Hi Marissa Mayer, thank you so much for your talk today. Fantastic product that Google has launched!  I was wondering if you could give us a few tips for women entrepreneurs or women in small business?

Sure my advice for women is the same as it is for men which is that you should find something that you’re really passionate about. Because passion is a gender neutralizing force.  I really think that you should work for someone that believes in you.  Work for people that believe in you & invest in you because that’s how you’ll go far in your career.  You’re going to give them a lot of your time, the company that your joining, your startup & you want to make sure that you also get the responsibility & fulfillment that you’re looking for.  So those are my two words of advice: Find somewhere where you’re really passionate & find somewhere where someone believes in you.  And I guess my third piece of advice is find somewhere very comfortable. It’s interesting for me because I’m a very shy person by my nature & at Google people don’t believe I’m shy at all because I’m very comfortable there. I think that’s very important, one of the most important things for all entrepreneurs, especially for women is to find your voice.  If you can’t express what you’re thinking & what you believe in that’s a real issue.  So I think it’s really important for women entrepreneurs especially to find somewhere where they’re comfortable.

Fantastic thank you so much. I was wondering if you could talk a little about how failure sits in the middle of startups & entrepreneurs?

Well failure is a fact of life.  The most important thing of course is to learn from failure.  I also think the other thing that people don’t realize about failure is it’s totally fine as long as you do it fast.  If you fail fast & then you’re onto the next thing, that’s actually successful you’re much better off.  So you’ve got to be constantly monitoring your effort, figuring out are you on a trajectory for success or are you on a trajectory for failure.  If you’re on a trajectory for failure, decide to fail fast, give it up & move onto the next thing that will be successful.

Marissa Mayer

Brilliant advice, thanks again.

Thank you, bye.

Marissa Mayer