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NativeAdVantage 10-Q2BA:

(10 Questions 2B Answered)

What do you do best?
What makes you the best?
Biggest success?
What are your aspirations?
Most challenging moment?
Favorite Motto?
Favorite People?
Favorite Places?
Favorite Products?
Current Passions?


Featured NativeAdVantage:

Andy Weir: Author of "The Martian"

John Philipson: VP, Six Senses Resorts

Tom Sito: Chair of Animation, USC Film School

Elizabeth Wynn: Broker, Sotheby's RE

Leonard Greenhalgh: Professor, Tuck-Darmouth)

Ryan Blair: NY Times Best Selling Author/Entrepreneur

 

Featured NativeAdVice:

Shai Reshef: Founder of University of the People

Paul D'Arcy: SVP of Indeed

Susan Hatje: GM of Mandarin Oriental, NY

Dan Laufer: Co-Founder of RentLingo

Hilary Laney: President of Tri-Digital

Greg Marsh: Co-Founder of onefinestay

Omar Qari: Co-Founder of Abacus

Gabriell Weinberg: Founder of DuckDuckGo

Stacy Rauen: E-I-C of Hospitality Design Mag

Jon Gray: CRO of HomeAway

Joe Speiser: Co-Founder of LittleThings.com

Ben McKean: Co-Founder of HungryRoot

John Boiler: Founder/CEO of 72andSunny

Wayne Pacelle: CEO of The Humane Society of the US

Tom Guay: GM at The Sagamore Resort

Dr. Alejandro Junger: Founder of The Clean Program

Rob Flaherty: CEO of Ketchum

Neil Thanedar: Founder/CEO of LabDoor

Andy Grinsfelder: VP of Sales/Marketing, Delaware North Resorts

Laura Frerer-Schmidt: VP/Publisher of Women's Health

Avi Steinlauf: CEO of Edmunds.com

Kathy Bloomgarden: CEO of Ruder Finn

Gabriel Flateman: Co-Founder/CTO of Casper

Mark Bartels: CEO of StumbleUpon

Bill Hagelstein: President/CEO of RPA

Adam Singolda: Founder/CEO of Taboola

Jonathan Plutzik: Proprietor of The Betsy-South Beach

Jessica Scorpio: Founder/VP of Marketing at GetAround

Ralph McRae: CEO of Leading Brands

Warren Berger: Bestselling Author

Liz Kaplow: Founder/CEO of Kaplow Communications

Dave Girouard: Founder/CEO of UpStart

Dave Asprey: Founder of BullectProof Executive

Douglas C. Smith: President of EDSA

Val Difebo: CEO of Deutsch NY

Guido Polito: CEO of Baglioni Hotels

Doyle Graham, Jr.: CEO of Valencia Group

Oscar Farinetti: Founder of Eataly

Angelo Sotira: CEO of DeviantART

Ali Khwaja: CFO of Safecharge

Zach Erdem: Proprietor of 75 Main

Jim Beley: GM of The Umstead Hotel

Alexis Gelburd-Kimler: Proprietor of West Bridge

Elie Georges: Proprietor of Hotel San Regis

Kalen Caughey: Founder o VOKE Tab

Michael Friedenberg: CEO of IDG

Donna Karan: Founder of DKNY

Edward Nardoza: Editor-in-Chief of WWD

Scott Dadich: Editor-in-Chief of Wired

Rhona Murphy: Former CEO of The Daily Beast

David J. Pecker: CEO of American Media

Lilian Roten: VP of Swissotel Hotels

Kenny Dichter: Founder/CEO of Wheels Up

Joshua Tetrick: Founder/CEO of Hampton Creek

Paul James: Global Brand Leader of The Luxury Collection

Dr. James Wagner: President of Emory University

Amy Thompson: President of ATM Artists & Management

Neil Gillis: President of Round Hill Music

Brett Matteson: President of Columbia Hospitality

Jonathan Reckford: CEO of Habitat For Humanity

Phil Harrison: President/CEO of Perkins+Will

Chef Bill Telepan

Tony Horton: Founder of P90X

Beth Weissenberger: Co-Founder of The Handel Group

Michael Fertik: Founder/CEO of Reputation.com

Dana Cowin: Editor-in-Chief of Food & Wine

Bob Proctor: Chairman of Proctor/Gallagher Institute

Dennis Turcinovic: Owner of Delmonicos

Vittorio Assaf: Co-Founder of Serafina Restaurant Group

Shafqat Islam: Co-Founder of Newscred

Matt Williams: CEO of The Martin Agency

Bruce Rogers: Executive Chef at Hale & Hearty

Caleb Merkl: Co-Founder of Maple

Candy Argondizza: VP of Culinary at ICC

Neil Sazant: President of The Sagamore

Matt Straz: Founder/CEO of Namely

Terry Couglin: Managing Partner of Marta/Maialino

Andrei Cherny: Co-Founder/CEO of Aspiration

Ronen Nissenbaum: Managing Director of Waldorf Astoria NY

Patrick Godfrey: President of Godfrey Q

Sarah Berman: Founder/President of The Berman Group

Michael Schwartz: Owner of Genuine Hospitality Group

Stephan Aarstol: Founder/CEO of Tower Paddle Boards

Peter Shaindlin: COO of Halekulani Corp.

August Cardona: Founder/CEO of Epicurean Group

Nick Kenner: Co-Founder of Just Salad

Thursday
Sep012016

Charu Sharma: Explorer, entrepreneur, & author

My NativeAdVice:

Bio:

Charu is a US-based Indian explorer, entrepreneur, and author. With 5 National Awards, expeditions to all 7 continents, over 600 stage shows, and three books in progress, this prodigy was enlisted as a "Power Woman alongside such notables as Oprah Winfrey, Sonia Gandhi, and Melinda Gates by Youth Incorporated magazine in March 2012.

Charu built two-award winning startup companies out of her dorm room before being recruited to LinkedIn. She has since dedicated her time to bringing together audacious women entrepreneurs through Go Against the Flow - her book, documentary film, and Huffington Post interview series with the goal to inspire more millennial women to build their own startup companies.

How did you get into the industry?

Before getting recruited by LinkedIn, I built two startups from my college dorm room. I realized that really smart young women around me were limited to seeking traditional career options because of inaction, imposter syndrome, very little exposure to the entrepreneurial path and lack of access to the right female mentors who they could personally relate to.

To help solve this, I brought together audacious female entrepreneurs and we launched the Go Against the Flow movement- through our book, documentary film and Huffington Post interview series- to inspire other millennial women to build their own startup companies and further create economic opportunities.

Any emerging industry trends?

WOMEN ARE ENTERING THE WORKFORCE IN EQUAL NUMBERS THAN MEN, BUT WOMEN STILL:
●    Earn 79% of their male counterparts
●    Receive less than 10% of venture capital funding
●    Make up only 18% of all start-up founders
●    Run only 4% of Fortune 500 companies
●    Only 2 % of women owned firms generate more than a million dollars

3. Any industry opportunities or challenges?

American colleges have graduated more women than men every single year for the last 30 years, and women are roughly half the workforce while entering the workforce, but only 4% of the CEO's are women, as I mentioned above. Ilene Lang, President of Catalyst.org says, "Women have tremendous pressure to be less leaderlike. Everyone loves a supportive woman, but the world often puts women in two buckets: either you're nurturing and supportive and hence incompetent OR you're aggressive and hence a bitch. It's a goldilocks syndrome. There is no perfect woman."

Inspiration for the business idea, and your vision for the Business?

Go Against the Flow started in bits and pieces. Today there’s the documentary, the book and the Huffington Post column all under the same umbrella, but the idea started when I was in college. I was very lucky to end up in the startup world and to have mentors in that world, but most of my friends did not, especially women. They were aiming for marketing or consulting jobs. I wanted them to be aware of the possibility of creating revenue-generating businesses for themselves. There are so many successful female entrepreneurs out there, but they needed more visibility.

I started cold-calling female entrepreneurs to ask them to participate. One of the first who agreed was Sarah Wood, founder of ad tech firm Unruly. When I emailed her, she wrote me back within an hour and said she could meet me in New York that night. I skipped a class, got on a bus and spent 30 minutes pitching her on Go Against the Flow. I tried the same thing with Arianna Huffington – just a cold email. She was too busy to participate, but she suggested I use the Huffington Post platform to share Go Against the Flow blogs, and that’s how the column was born.

It was natural to me to take all of these great contacts and stories and share them through visual media. I put in all my savings, launched a Kickstarter campaign and got a grant from LinkedIn to make this documentary. We went around the U.S. interviewing female founders from companies including CloudFlare, Women 2.0 and others.

The whole movement is about inspiring women to make choices for themselves. I want to create awareness that entrepreneurship is a path they can consider, and give them the needed resources, mentors and encouragement to be successful.

What's next for the Business in the near future?

The project has primarily been storytelling so far. Beyond that, I am finding partners who can continue the momentum at a grassroots level. For example, if a college student is inspired by the film, that’s great, but then what? I want to find partners who can provide one-to-one mentorship to keep the inspiration going. We’re also looking at creating a scholarship fund with MassChallenge, which has a focus to get more female entrepreneurs in their pipeline and get them more access to capital.

Your key initiatives for the success of the Business?

Our champions include LinkedIn, Yelp, Unruly, Women Who Code, Wasabi Ventures and Thoughtworks to name a few. Getting these partners early on have helped us tap into their networks to get our book and film in front of out target audience.

Your most difficult moment at the Business? (and what did you learn?)

I give luck too much credit when doing interviews to try to come across as humble. Honestly, I think I succeeded in my pursuits because I determined my priorities and I made some very risky choices to do justice to my priorities.

I gave up a cozy internship to start my first company in a city where I knew absolutely no one. I turned a job interview failure into a business idea and created my second company to connect job seekers to industry experts to practice mock interviews in real time. It took two years and twenty something rejections to find a publisher for my first book. When Arianna Huffington declined my invite to write a chapter in my book, I turned that into an opportunity to start blogging on HuffPo. The documentary film ended up needing 1.5 more years than planned and all my life savings to produce. I could have saved all that money for graduate school, to buy a car, or take my parents on a trip abroad, but I put all my eggs in one basket.

Hackbright Academy listed my film under 'top 5 films to watch for women in tech and entrepreneurship', I ran a very successful kickstarter campaign to fundraise for post-production, got picked up by a film distributor and premiered our film at 32 LinkedIn offices worldwide. While keeping a full-time job and trying to get my books published, I spent every weeknight and weekend for several months to learn coding to build a web app I was passionate about.

Ideal experience for a customer/client?

I want young women to know that they can instead of letting life happen to them, they can choose to create their own destiny, that they can pursue their passion whether in fashion, healthcare or whatever else it may be and find ways to also make money and lots of it, and own their work and spend their life doing what's truly meaningful to them. I want them to know that they can take risks, and I want them to be informed about the option of pursuing the entrepreneurial path, and give them enough knowledge and insight into being an entrepreneur that they feel comfortable pursuing this path. I mean, women already know that there are people out there who are entrepreneurs. But they don't know enough about how to be one and why to be one to see themselves in those shoes. Right now, they are pursuing consulting or grad school or IBanking because these are the options they are surrounded by - these firms come to recruit on campus.. imagine if we instead to their campuses and showed them success stories of female entrepreneurs, then these women can make more thoughtful and informed career decisions, rather than getting a job at 22, then 10 years later feeling burnt out and less inspired and then wanting to start their businesses.

I'm not saying every 22 year old should start a company. It's definitely not for everyone. In fact, you need to be very courageous and passionate about your market or audience to be able to build a successful company, and if you're bound for failure if you build a company just for the sake of building it.

How do you motivate others?

By being empathetic and listening intently, so then I can thoughtfully create a genuinely enriching experience for them - whether it’s engaging and inspiring my audience, or managing my team.

Career advice to those in your industry?

My advice to entrepreneurs is: Take a deep breath and do it. It’s a lonely path. A lot of people say that, and it’s true. You are determining your own success. In a corporate job or in student life, if you do A, B, C, then you succeed. In a startup, this certainty does not exist. You’ll get mixed opinions and you’ll have to believe in yourself to decide what to do.

https://www.facebook.com/GoAgainstFlow

https://twitter.com/GoAgainstFlow