Breaking the Bamboo Ceiling
I was invited as a speaker for North American Association of Asian Professionals (NAAAP) last Friday and it was overwhelming to be recognized as one of the Asian women leaders who has inspired others.
Sitting beside me at my table was Milly, a successful corporate lawyer, who spoke eloquently about her work and the challenges that she faced. I felt very fortunate sitting among all these wonderful, successful members of the Asian community.
It seemed like a piece of cake when, 25 years ago, my sister and I decided to become entrepreneurs and started our own company. We invested $2,000 and started from scratch with zero customers. Our only contact was a factory that made handbags. Without any design background, we plunged in headlong. Jeanne Lottie was born.
Of course, we picked up skills along the way. But I can’t say that I felt pressure being Asian, nor did I meet barriers entering the world of business as a woman. We just knew we would succeed. Great products speak loud and we never failed to design and develop beautiful, affordable handbags for women of all ages!
Is it because I work very hard? No! But perhaps I should elaborate: I don’t really work. When you start a business, you put so much of yourself into it that it begins to feel like your baby. And it is so much fun to have your own baby to take care of, to cherish and to see her grown!