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Ivanka Trump really needs no introduction, she’s such a role model for women who want to do it all, have their own careers, families and personal lives. Not only has she created this for herself, but with Ivankatrump.com and her #WomenWhoWork campaign she has created a space for women who work, with original content to inspire and empower her to build her career. As we’ve been working so hard this part year building heymama, we were thrilled to be able to ask Ivanka about personal experience as a business woman and her advice to all of us out there working to make it happen.

1.    When you Wikipedia your name, the description says you’re an American Businesswoman, writer and former model.  Can you tell us about when you felt that people starting taking you seriously as a businesswoman?

Early on in my career I had concerns that I was underestimated as a businesswoman. I used to joke about this all the time with my father. If someone had a meeting with Donald Trump, they would come in fully prepared—whereas if they had a meeting with me, they were less likely to be so meticulous. That was an advantage for me as I was still learning, but once I really found my footing and started to hit my stride, I began to add value and take initiative where others hadn’t previously. You have to earn people’s respect. It takes time and there aren’t shortcuts.

Ivanka Trump in her office #WomenWhoWork

 

2.    You are hands down one of the biggest role models out there for women in business, what does #WomenWhoWork mean to you and what kind of impact do you hope it will have?

#WomenWhoWork was created to celebrate the many ways in which women work, and redefine what it means to be a modern professional woman. It’s about recognizing that many women are passionate about their careers, but they’re not singularly defined by them. Their professional personas are only part of the story. They’re also wives, mothers, sisters, best friends, and the reality is that they work really hard in each of their roles. My hope is that this initiative will help women change the narrative about what it means to be a woman who works—and will inspire women everywhere to create the lives they want to live.

 

#WomenWhoWork was created to celebrate the many ways in which women work, and redefine what it means to be a modern professional woman. It’s about recognizing that many women are passionate about their careers, but they’re not singularly defined by them. Their professional personas are only part of the story.

 

3.    Where do you see the Ivanka Trump brand heading, what are some of the exciting projects on deck for this year?

We launched IvankaTrump.com and our #WomenWhoWork initiative just under a year ago and have been so pleased with the response thus far. Women everywhere are responding to this message—that we can live multidimensional lives and proudly prioritize the things that mean the most to us. We will continue to expand on the empowering content we’re creating, and developing the Ivanka Trump collection, which is sophisticated, solution-oriented and accessibly priced, in order to meet the needs of modern professional women.

4.    You have two beautiful kids, and a jam packed schedule! How do you decide on what to say yes and no to?

If there’s one thing my schedule has taught me, it’s that time is a finite resource. It’s so important to me to be present in every moment, so I work hard not overbook; instead, I’ll utilize the day to it’s full capacity. Life isn’t nine to five anymore; our office environment is conducive to the multidimensional woman, and so is my schedule. I am almost always responding to emails after Arabella and Joseph are in bed, but I’m happy to do so, in order to make time for important activities and moments with them during the day.

 

If there’s one thing my schedule has taught me, it’s that time is a finite resource.

Ivanka Trump at work #WomenWhoWork

 

5.    Balance is an elusive term and we won’t ask you how you balance it all! But we do want to know, what do you do to help ease into home life after a busy and sometimes stressful day at work? What helps you be present in the moment with your kids when you likely have a ton going on in your head?

I feel that having a fulfilling career makes me a better wife and mother, so I am present at the office and work hard knowing that at the end of the day I get to go home to my family. Being motivated to return home to my children before bedtime makes me more efficient while at work, allowing me to be more present at home—it’s a virtuous cycle!

6.    If you had to choose 3 qualities of highly successful people, and qualities you possess, what do you think they are?

Passion, work ethic and a commitment to excellence.

7.    What are five things that would surprise people about you?

1. I haven’t purchased a pair of shoes since I launched my own brand (aside from sneakers, but those don’t count!).
2. I cook for my family every weekend.
3. I don’t own a blow dryer—I don’t know how to use one! Most mornings, I walk to work with my hair slightly wet!
4. I’m a closet Real Housewives fan. Any season, any year.  I am sort of indifferent.
5. My team and I are podcast junkies.  We love to share our favorites and listen to them as we walk or commute to work.

Ivanka Trump with her kids #WomenWhoWork

 

8.    If you were in an alternate universe and not living in NYC and being the EVP for The Trump Organization, where would you be and what would you do?

I can honestly say it’s been my goal since I was a child to get into real estate development.  I love envisioning—and then building—iconic projects. I’m really not sure what else I would do if I weren’t in the industry. I’d probably be working to get into it!

9. How has your outlook on work and life changed since having Arabella and Joseph?

Both my career and my family life bring me enormous joy, but both are also very demanding. It’s been a challenge, but one I have really embraced. I find that no matter how hard I work during the week—how many meetings I’ve attended or called in to, or deals I’ve negotiated—I’m much more exhausted on Monday morning after two full days of being home with the kids than I am on a Friday evening! Having children, I’ve truly realized how much work goes into building a loving home, and I wouldn’t trade those responsibilities for anything!

10. How important do you think community is for women entrepreneurs?

I think it’s incredibly important for female entrepreneurs to feel supported and a part of a community that understands firsthand the challenges that come with balancing work and life. It’s important to continue this engaging and dynamic discussion about female entrepreneurs, the challenges they face, and ultimately their successes. This is a key aspect of my #WomenWhoWork initiative and something that I hope will inspire others to share what it means to be a modern professional woman.

11. You’re passionate about helping women in business, do you believe there is a shortage of mentors, role models and support for women today?

While I don’t believe that there is a lack of women mentors and role models in the world today, I do think there is a lack of awareness surrounding them. With the #WomenWhoWork campaign, and through the content we are creating on our website, we are working to bring to light many of the amazing female role models out there, whether that be a businesswoman, a teacher, a mother, or otherwise!

12.  What is the most important lesson you’ve learned that you want to share with your kids?

Passion really is the key to success (along with the work ethic to match!). I’ll encourage my kids to ask questions and really spend time listening—you can’t be an expert at everything. That said, don’t be afraid to contribute your opinion to a discussion when it’s appropriate and don’t be afraid to make mistakes. It’s the best way to learn.

Passion really is the key to success (along with the work ethic to match!)

13.  We love to end our interviews with words to live by that are near to your heart, what are some of those for you?

Work hard, stay humble. Challenge yourself in every aspect of your life.

You can learn more about Ivanka and #WomenWhoWork on her heymama profile here and Ivankatrump.com.

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