Annah Stretton: 5 Lessons On Life & Entrepreneurship
As founder and managing director of the Stretton Group, Annah Stretton has achieved international business success. She has emerged from a background of wholesaling mainstream garments to build a multi-million dollar company in the fashion industry.
Annah’s skills and experience have also been applied well beyond the confines of the fashion sector. The Annah Stretton label is loved by women all over the world. Annah’s unrelenting ambition to do more and be more has also seen her attract an international online following of over 210,000 people, become an acclaimed author, blogger, magazine publisher, and public speaker, in addition to raising her two children – Edward and Samantha.
We think her lessons must be known and shared, so we made a list of her teachings that strike a chord with us.
LESSON #1: HELP OTHERS WHEN YOU COULD USE SOME HELP YOURSELF
One thing Annah keeps reminding people is that none of us is exempt from the obstacles life throws at us. Things will never go only the way we want them to, and the best thing we can do when bad things happen is to seek out someone that’s in a worse position than we are. We should support that person in any way we can and we’ll also feel better about the challenges we’re facing.
LESSON #2: MUMS ARE SUPERHEROES SHAPING THE FUTURE OF OUR COMMUNITIES
Annah says that “time has always been a challenge for mothers” but today the pressure feels even more intense. Mums are juggling tasks, wearing countless hats, building their careers or growing their businesses, dealing with parenting issues that previous generations never experienced. Because mothers want the best for their children, they also shape the communities they’re a part of by being involved in business, events, meetings and educational efforts.
“My own development at the helm of this company of mine has enabled me to create a stronger environment to bring up my children as I become less emotive and simply deal with the challenges at hand with the development of my leadership skills. These skills have also crossed over into my parenting role.
For me, it has always been about instilling strong values into my two children, creating a strong role model for them and providing them with the tools to deal with life’s challenges, given that you will never be able to ascertain just what life is going to throw at you.
It is so important that you create your own life balance first. Bringing up a family is very similar to leading a team. I am often walking a team member through a challenge to change a behavior in the same way that I would of a child of mine.
As we strive to increase diversity in the workplace, especially in the leading roles that have been traditionally held by men, there has never been a better time for women to know and trust that we can have it all.
I love being a Mum. I will always be a Mum. And my two children, Sam and Edward will always be my greatest achievements!”
LESSON #3: MISTAKES ARE LESSONS ONLY IF WE REFLECT UPON THEM
Annah is often quoted saying “failure is the foundation stone of my success!” and just as often she reminds people that mistakes do not automatically lead to learning. In Annah’s words “a moment of failure is only accompanied by learning if we take the time to reflect on what happened and why. ”
LESSON #4: BE TRANSPARENT, IN BUSINESS AND LIFE
All best relationships in life, be it between lovers, parents and children, employers and employees, are always based on transparency. If you are willing to let others see the real you, you’ll find something great. As Annah said it: “Act and speak with a strong level of conviction. Take absolute ownership of your family, your community and your contributions at work.”
LESSON #5: WORK TOWARDS DOING LESS
Annah Stretton believes women would benefit greatly from learning from what men have done for centuries: working tirelessly towards doing less. Men are masters of simplification, and we all should learn from them. We should worry less about our growing to-do list and find ways to cut it down to the essential, so we’d be less busy but achieve more.
If you find Annah’s lessons valuable, don’t forget to follow her on Facebook where she published inspiring content for every entrepreneur.
First published by Remote Workmate