Being a founder, entrepreneur, or a business owner can have many exciting and thrilling moments. But it is also punctuated with periods of doubt, slump, and anxiety. So how does one successfully and healthily ride the highs and lows of Entrepreneurship? In this series, called “How To Successfully Ride The Emotional Highs & Lows Of Being An Entrepreneur“ we are talking to successful entrepreneurs who can share stories from their experience. I had the pleasure of interviewing Eva Martins.
Eva Martins is the founder of the Global Women Leadership Academy, a number 1 international and best-selling author, speaker, executive leader in Fortune 500 Company, and a business owner with a mission to empower women to skyrocket their lives. She started her career in a male-dominated corporate industry where she soon grasped that if you do not have power, you go nowhere. Eva understood that if you do not have a strong voice, you are not heard. That if you do not adopt a more masculine attitude you will be blocked from excelling. It took her more than 10 years of operating in many different leading roles to realize things needed to change. She now dedicates her energy to empower other women to step up in their lives through the Global Women Leadership Academy. She has trained hundreds of women over the years and up until today. Her mission is to drive gender equality at all levels of society and encourage women to raise their voices and goals, that’s why her academy for women came to life. Check http://www.evamartins.com/ to know more.
Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Before we dive in, our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your ‘backstory’ and how you got started?
What was the “Aha Moment” that led to the idea for your current company? Can you share that story with us?
In your opinion, were you a natural born entrepreneur or did you develop that aptitude later on? Can you explain what you mean?
Was there somebody in your life who inspired or helped you to start your journey with your business? Can you share a story with us?
Eva Martins: Thanks to my mum Edith who was a successful entrepreneur and who always taught me to go for my dreams. Through her, I always felt the calling to be an example to other women. Many friends have been coming to me for advice since 20 years ago when I started my own professional life. I also started to mentor colleagues and friends. I ended up training myself in coaching to better support them and slowly encountered many women clients who contacted me to get support.
What do you think makes your company stand out? Can you share a story?
You are a successful business leader. Which three character traits do you think were most instrumental to your success? Can you please share a story or example for each?
Eva Martins: Besides the business acumen and experience I acquired as a visionary and strategist, the three character traits I think helped me the most in becoming a successful leader are: 1) My dedication to growth and never compromising for less. I thrive to be the best version of myself every day and ensure I am serving others with my highest standard; 2) I truly believe that we cannot be successful alone and hence, the value of a diverse team. I empower every member of my team to operate at their best by creating a safe environment where they can be themselves, which allows them to contribute without having the fear of being pushed down, criticized, or ashamed. I create a culture of transparency and honesty where I do not hold back on knowledge as a way to keep power. I actually do the opposite and share as much as I can to increase the engagement level and I would be extremely honest regarding any situation but also ensuring we have a 2-way feedback loop ; 3) I consider myself a happiness coach. The first thing I ask a new team member is how do I need to lead them in a way that makes them happy, as I believe that if we are happy, fulfilled, and passionate with what we are doing, we will always excel and work the extra mile to succeed for ourselves and the whole team.
Often leaders are asked to share the best advice they received. But let’s reverse the question. Can you share a story about advice you’ve received that you now wish you never followed?
Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them create a work culture in which employees thrive and do not “burn out” or get overwhelmed?
Eva Martins: I would advise creating a safe environment where we deeply care for our teams, our peers, and colleagues. We are all humans who spend far too much time at work. I would try to understand which are the main drivers in life for each of my team members, what makes them happy, which are the main skills and natural gifts, and allow them to share them freely without needing to protect themselves. I truly believe that when we operate in a safe environment we unleash our team’s potential to innovate, create solutions, and excel. Creating a culture of transparency and honesty establishes a deeper feeling of connection, increases engagement and trust which then allows the team to overcome any challenges coming their way and act as one team.
What would you advise other business leaders to do in order to build trust, credibility, and Authority in their industry?
Can you help articulate why doing that is essential today?
Eva Martins: Now more than ever people need to feel connected, feel valued, heard, and seen. The world is under extreme pressure, feeling our freedom being taken away by governments, by COVID. We were all forced to adapt to the new digital world to keep our business alive. Few businesses had to close, others had to transform and adapt. The pressure is high and people need to feel supported. More than ever the human touch is critical, especially after spending long hours behind a screen and feeling disconnected from each other.
What are the most common mistakes you have seen CEOs & founders make when they start a business? What can be done to avoid those errors?
Ok fantastic. Thank you for those excellent insights, Let’s now shift to the main focus of our interview about How to Successfully Ride The Emotional Highs & Lows Of Being An Entrepreneur. The journey of an entrepreneur is never easy, and is filled with challenges, failures, setbacks, as well as joys, thrills and celebrations. This might be intuitive, but I think it will be very useful to specifically articulate it. Can you describe to our readers why no matter how successful you are as an entrepreneur, you will always have fairly dramatic highs and lows? Particularly, can you help explain why this is different from someone with a “regular job”?
Do you feel comfortable sharing a story from your own experience about how you felt unusually high and excited as a result of your business? We would love to hear it.
Do you feel comfortable sharing a story from your own experience about how you felt unusually low, and vulnerable as a result of your business? We would love to hear it.
Eva Martins: Driving your own business is not always easy, you need to work hard, put all your heart, all your energy into serving others and when you realize the results are not matching your level of expectations or effort, it feels disappointing and we all end up wondering if it is worth the effort. It is not easy to continuously motivate yourself to move forward no matter what, to find the inner energy to overcome challenges, unknowns, to admit that we are not perfect nor experts in everything.
Based on your experience can you tell us what you did to bounce back?
Ok super. Here is the main question of our interview. What are your “Five Things You Need To Successfully Ride The Emotional Highs & Lows Of Being An Entrepreneur”? Please share a story or an example for each.
We are living during challenging times and resilience is critical during times like these. How would you define resilience? What do you believe are the characteristics or traits of resilient people?
Did you have any experiences growing up that have contributed to building your resiliency? Would you mind sharing a story?
Can you help articulate why a leader’s positive attitude can have a positive impact both on their clients and their team? Please share a story or example if you can.
Eva Martins: I truly believe that whether as a corporate leader or as an entrepreneur, my main job is to be a happiness coach, creating a safe environment for my team to operate at its best and excel. By creating a safe environment and ensuring that they are happy they will for sure overperform and feel fulfilled, they will feel safe to be themselves, which then allows them to be fully creative and innovative as well. This in return creates a positive vibe around the business, felt by our clients, and partners functioning as a magnet. Like attracts like, so by creating a happy environment to work you also attract happy and loyal clients.
Ok. Super. We are nearly done. What is your favorite inspirational quote that motivates you to pursue greatness? Can you share a story about how it was relevant to you in your own life?
Eva Martins: My favorite quote, quite well known, is from Gandhi “Be the change you wish to see in the world”. I believe our environment is only a reflection of our inner beliefs, our inner state of mind, the inner story we tell ourselves subconsciously. The world around us is nothing else than a mirror projecting back to us the beliefs we need to change, the fears we need to release, the situations we need to solve. I also believe that life does not happen to us but for us. I had difficult situations to overcome in the past such as the loss of a baby, a divorce…today I understand why it happened and I am grateful for the lessons. I understood that those unfortunate events in my life were wake-up calls from the universe and we have the choice to learn and solve them inside of us or avoid them but they will grow inside of us until we face them.
How can our readers further follow you online?
This was very inspiring. Thank you so much for the time you spent with
this. We wish you continued success and good health!