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Jun 16, 20215 min read

3 winning business lessons from The Female Company, Marla Aaron Jewelry and more.

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by Klarna

Klarna is on Clubhouse! Follow our club, Your Move, where we sit down with the most influential voices around the world for conversations about the topics that matter most—from entrepreneurship and retail to sustainability and financial wellness.

On June 9th, Klarna’s Head of Strategy Natalia Brzezinski hosted “How dare she? Have a vision” on Clubhouse, with special guests Marla Aaron, CEO of Marla Aaron Jewelry; Ann-Sophie Claus, founder of The Female Company; Darya Hope, founder of the soon-to-launch Darya Hope Beauty; Sandra Campos, CEO of Project Verte and founder of Fashion Launchpad; and Delphine Mousseau, e-commerce expert, board member of Decathlon Deutschland and Holland & Barrett, independent director to Fnac Darty, and more. They discussed each of their journeys building, scaling, pivoting, and rebuilding their businessesand the challenges and joys along the way. Here are some of the must-know takeaways from their conversation.

1. Challenge the status quo. 

One thing all the panelists agreed upon was that breaking rules is essential for growth, both personally and professionally. 

For Ann-Sophie Claus, this ethos has led The Female Company to launch campaigns that stand out to the consumer and challenge industry norms, such as when the company protested Germany’s 19% tax on sanitary products. In 2019, noting that books were only taxed at 7%, The Female Company decided to sell tampons inside books at a lower tax, highlighting the inequality in a tangible but brand-appropriate way. The campaign went viral and, within just a few months, Germany reduced its tax on tampons. Even though it came with a huge risk for such a new business, the protest aligned with The Female Company’s values and goals. By being bold, the brand initiated real societal change, building long-term customer loyalty in the process.

Darya Hope has also been breaking rules from the start, founding her first company at the age of 19, and trusting her instincts even in the face of challenges and opposition. Her new skincare brand Darya Hope Beauty is also breaking barriers by introducing revolutionary stem cell technology to the beauty world. Trusting in these new products and practices will help her brand stand out from others and will create new opportunities for differentiation in the future. 

2. Always keep moving forward.

The most valuable lesson that Delphine Mousseau has learned throughout her career has been recognizing when it’s time to “dust up your feet and move on.” Admitting when situations aren’t working leads to opportunities, not shame. For Mousseau, this meant pivoting to a new role when she realized that her career stagnated at a leading fashion company. Rather than getting stuck at a company where joining the executive team was unlikely, she recognized her situation was untenable and moved on to secure a new job with real opportunities for growth.

For Marla Aaron, when she stopped trying to do too much in her career, she was able to double down on the growth of her jewelry business, Marla Aaron Jewelry. When she was first starting, Aaron divided her time between learning the jewelry business and taking consulting jobsand she didn’t have enough time to succeed at both. But, after she chose to accept that consulting was not for her and focus on jewelry full-time, Aaron had time to transform her business into the success it is today. 

3. Understand your strengths and hire to support your weaknesses. 

While the life of every business owner and entrepreneur comes with highs and lows, some challenges can be tackled simply by hiring the right people. Claus shared that another challenge she faced early on at The Female Company was that it’s impossible to be an expert in every situation. By being honest about her strengths and weaknesses, she was able to ask for help and find the right people with complementary skills. “It’s about not being afraid of pulling in other people to support you,” she said.

Hope also echoed this sentiment, sharing that building out her team gave her more time to focus on getting creative and developing her brand. Trying to do too much, or taking on tasks that you aren’t as skilled at, only leads to frustration and work that doesn’t feed your goals. Instead, put yourself and your team in a position to succeed by capitalizing on what people are good at and understanding where help is needed. 

Interested in attending the next session? Don’t forget to follow Klarna’s club, Your Move, to stay up-to-speed on all of our upcoming Clubhouse events.

Looking for more insights from business leaders? Check out our Small Business Month series!

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