100 Brilliant Minds and What They Said


More women than ever are choosing to start and grow entrepreneurial businesses. And statistics show that female entrepreneurs are more likely to use technology, to create products and services unfamiliar to the market, and to be involved with socially orientated companies.

But there’s still huge potential to achieve more. Women are still much less likely than men to believe that we have the right skills to start a new venture. And the fear of failure is the main reason why a third of the female population don’t choose self-employment.

If, however, you want a dose of inspiration from successful business women, take a look at the infographic “100 Brilliant Minds and What They Said” by Funding Circle, a UK and US peer-to-peer lending platform for small businesses. The creative piece, illustrated by Jordi Marchi, features words of wisdom from industry leaders, and their unique perspective and approach to business. It’s great to see that over a third of the entrepreneurial role models they selected are women.

From eminent businesswomen, such as Coco Chanel and Helena Rubinstein, to modern pop icons such as Victoria Beckham and Jennifer Lopez, passing by renowned publishers such as Katharine Graham and Arianna Huffington to tech gurus such as Sheryl Sandberg and Marissa Mayer, the dynamic infographic is a celebration of entrepreneurship in all forms.

Here are some of our favourite quotes from those brilliant minds:

It is remarkable what a woman can accomplish with just a little ambition.

– Florence Nightingale Graham, founder of Elizabeth Arden.

oprahI am a woman in process. I’m just trying like everybody else. I try to take every conflict, every experience, and learn from it. Life is never dull.

– Oprah Winfrey, founder of Oprah Winfrey Network.


Discovering your purpose doesn’t have to be complicated. Look at what you do and why you do it. Is it to support your family? That’s your purpose. Is it to make a difference in your customer’s life? That’s your purpose.

– Anne F. Beiler, founder of Auntie Anne’s Pretzels.


saraMy dad encouraged us to fail. Growing up, he would ask us what we failed at that week. If we didn’t have something, he would be disappointed. It changed my mindset at an early age that failure is not the outcome, failure is not trying. Don’t be afraid to fail.

– Sara Blakely, founder of Spanx.

At the end of the day, both men and women who become CEOs have showed tenacity and hard work to succeed in their careers. It takes not just skills but also extreme dedication and commitment. And regardless of gender, CEOs are measured by the same criteria – the growth and success of the business.

– Susan Wojcicki, CEO of YouTube.


Success is fine, but success is fleeting. Significance is lasting.

– Beth Brooke, Global Vice Chair at Ernst & Young.

What are your favourites? Check out the dynamic version of the infographic here and share your thoughts with us. As a plus, it also includes a quiz where you can test your knowledge about the business world!

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