“The rules were written more than 100 years ago for and by men, and are no longer working in today's modern workplace."
- Shelley Zalis, CEO of the Female Quotient
Female leadership prioritizes strategic thinking and inclusion when hiring – such as considering childcare access or flexible hours for their team. This leads to a happier team with less turnover, higher productivity, and in the bigger scheme: higher revenues.
Data in a report published by the Boston Consulting Group, showed that female-led startups, generated higher returns than purely male-founded startups – 78 cents to the dollar of funding, compared to 31 cents in their male counterparts.
Women-led teams were also found to have an increased focus on collaboration and communication. This in turn encourages inclusion and diversity. Collaboration and openness allows for expression of different perspectives. Different perspectives leads to faster problem solving because it allows for more creativity and “out of the box” thinking.
All of this culminates in improved teamwork, productivity and improved performance, with a positive impact on revenue. If decisive leadership can keep a company on the rails, then female leadership can foster vision, resilience and strategic thinking. These are key elements that can keep a team motivated and help drive them forward.
ADAY is a fashion commerce brand that focuses on timeless staple pieces which are sustainable, technical and beautiful. It was cofounded in London by Nina Faulhaber and Meg He (co-CEOs) in June 2015. ADAY has been a huge success from inception. It was named one of the Most Innovative Companies in the World 2018 by Fast Company in Style.
Its cofounders/co-CEOs were listed in the Forbes 30 under 30 in Retail & E-commerce. Its clothing line has been featured in Vogue, Fast Company and Financial Times – to name a few. In a turbulent and fickle market such as retail clothing, ADAY has found a successful niche that is giving it durability and longevity.
Both Faulhaber and He lived in multiple cities around the world before starting ADAY. Faulhaber grew up in Germany, then lived in Montreal and Singapore, before co-founding ADAY in London with He, and eventually moving to New York. He was born in Beijing, grew up in the UK, traveled to over 80 countries before a spell in the Bay Area and relocating to New York.
Both He and Faulhaber have strong athletic backgrounds. Faulhaber was a promising gymnast who played basketball in her teens. A self-professed nerd, He discovered Vinyasa Yoga in San Francisco and trained to be a yoga teacher. Yoga led to road biking, led to hiking, led to ice climbing, marathons, and more.
They met while working at Goldman Sachs in London, where a mutual passion for venture capitalism and investing, quickly united them. But it was their exposure to the female experience all over the world that shaped them into empathetic leaders and gave them a strategic mission.
"Technical clothing (or athleisure or activewear) is the fastest growing segment of the whole fashion market, with a $282bn market worldwide today."
-Nina Faulhaber, cofounder and co-CEO of ADAY
It also helped them identify a universal and global gap in the women’s fashion market: Sustainable, high-quality, timeless pieces that looked tailored and professional, but functioned as comfortable activewear. Basically clothes women could practically live in around the clock, that would breathe, wouldn’t wrinkle, looked great and were comfortable. And so ADAY was born.
ADAY’s mission was big, but also small. They wanted to make a bigger impact on sustainability in the fashion industry, so they focused on producing a smaller, simpler range of wardrobe staples. They didn’t want to mass produce clothes that would just be worn for a few months and thrown away next season. They wanted quality clothes from recycled materials that women could wear for years and years. Some of the materials ADAY uses are even made from recycled water bottles.
Their products were so popular they sold out in months. Feedback from their customers, led them to decide to go back to the drawing board and improve the design instead of simply re-stocking.
"A global citizen to ADAY is a woman who’s taking on the world… She is a hustler, an actor, if not an activist. She follows her passion and impacts change. She lives consciously."
- Meg He, cofounder and co-CEO of ADAY.
Diverse backgrounds and exposure to diverse cultures is a pivotal foundation to ADAY’s success.
ADAY’s brand values are to be kind to the planet, with a focus on sustainability and making a positive difference. This naturally extended to their own workplace values and principles. After both having worked in the gruelling world of investment banking, He and Faulhaber both wanted their focus to be communal with emphasis on “life balance” (as opposed to work-life balance).
“When you come into the ADAY office you truly don’t know who the boss is, this is the kind of team I love.”
- Nina Faulhaber, co-Founder and co-CEO of ADAY.
Their team is 100% women from a diverse range of backgrounds. They operate as one big family, working towards the same mission. Faulhaber and He’s even put an emphasis on team achievements over individual achievements.
ADAY lives by its brand’s core values. In the office, their women-led team is happy, environmentally conscious, and productive. Ideas are welcomed from all and the community spirit of inclusivity fosters harmony and productivity.
This is a company that thrives on diversity. So much so that its become an essential ingredient to its commercial success, productivity, and longevity. Which says a lot, when you consider it’s thriving in an industry renowned for its constantly and rapidly changing trends.
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