Women today are eager to talk about professional success, and few things are more beneficial to those conversations than the advice of already-successful women. The BBC has made this possible by releasing both the "Woman's Hour Power List 2013," which ranks the 100 most powerful women in the UK this year, and an accompanying short documentary. In the film, some of the women on the Power List candidly discuss lessons they've learned throughout their careers.
Here are a few pearls of wisdom from some of the incredible women featured on the list:
1. Ignore naysayers.
“The difference between the critic and me is I really believe in what I do and they don’t believe in what I do so it doesn’t really matter what they say.…In my life, so many people said ‘no you can’t do that.’ ‘No you can’t go to University, you haven’t got any A levels, no levels, No you can’t do this, no you can’t do that.’ And I just thought well the only person telling me that I can’t is them. If I think that I can do it I’ll do it and everything in my life that I wanted to do, I’ve achieved.”
--Tracey Emin, artist
2. Take risks.
“I think I’ve always felt that there was something quite exciting about taking risks. And there’s a great saying, actually, that you only learn when you are at risk and I’m fascinated by both risk and learning, so that has led me to take jobs that people would think ‘you can’t do that, that’s just impossible.’ No it won’t be.”
--Heather Rabbatts CBE, non-executive director of the Football Association
3. Push back against the part of yourself that is convinced you don't deserve the success you've achieved.
“I come from a working class background, I’m state school educated, I didn’t go to university, so there’s always been this little voice in the back of my head that said ‘what are you doing here? What do you think you’re doing? You’re going to be found out.’ And I think I’ve only silenced that voice in the past couple of years.”
--Liz Bingham, Managing Partner of Ernst & Young
4. Take advantage of each and every day.
“I have a Jewish background and was born in Germany at a time of horrendous discrimination and it’s not good for a child’s self-worth to know that people are trying to kill you. I found that the trauma of my childhood left me with some very strong values which are as strong today as 75 years ago, and that is to realize that tomorrow is not going to be like today, certainly not like yesterday and to realize that the life that was saved –- I had to make it worth saving.”
--Dame Stephanie Shirley, philanthropist