In the lead-up to Red Heel Day, we’re interviewing our speakers to find out more about what inspires them, and what drives them to be such an inspiration to others! If you haven’t yet, check out our interviews with Anne-Marie Elias, Alexandra Mills and Kirsten Galliott!
Our interview today is with Kasia Gospos, the founder of Leaders in Heels. Kasia is also a Commercial and Business Analyst and Management Accountant (ACMA, CGMA) who weaves meaningful stories from the analysis of financial and operational metrics. She has successfully released the Make Your Mark leadership notebook, working closely with designers and publishers. She is also the author of the just-launched Get Your Life Back, an ebook on automation and how she – and others – have used it to reclaim their time.
1. What does your typical day look like?
On days when I work on Leaders in Heels I wake up around 8 am and have a long play session with my dog Happy—it’s always fun and cuddles. We’ll walk together to my favourite local café in Balmain, Ciao Thyme, and then to a park overlooking harbour so Happy can play with other dogs.
I love Sydney. 90% of the year it is nice and sunny. Breakfast is usually with someone who inspires me. This is also my time to meet other entrepreneur-friends and brainstorm ideas. The rest of the day I try to spend on creative projects – I’ve just launched my ebook on business automation! My business and life are inseparable. I can’t say what time I finish work, because I never do!
My husband comes back from work around 6pm, and we plan our dinner. If we are uninspired we just go to local restaurants. If we have more time we love cooking together, having a glass of wine, listening to music in the same time and talking about new ideas we have.
2. What inspires you to get out of bed every day?
Without a doubt, the thought that this is another day I can spend building up Leaders in Heels.
What I love the most about Leaders in Heels is that now, with a growing following of over 30,000 followers and over 60,000 page views, we have the power to make a positive change. We love supporting organizations for women and I’m so proud to be a supporter of Dress For Success Sydney and Women in Global Business. I also love that we get involved in ad-hoc not-for-profit initiatives such as Walk in Her Shoes and Create-a-thon; with our audience, we’re able to help them raise awareness about very important issues.
We’re currently looking to expand our partnerships program even further and promote organizations that support female entrepreneurship, encourage girls to study STEM subjects or support girls in disadvantaged communities! So if you are one of them make sure to apply as a potential partner!
3. Which key characteristics do you see a female leader having?
I always refer to the Leaders in Heels Manifesto, which I created after polling our readers for what they thought were key characteristics of female leaders. Even while reading about, meeting or interviewing successful people, I realised they all shared certain characteristics.
They were passionate about what they did which gave them energy to work the long hours and not to give up even when the odds were against them. They were creative in achieving their goals—whether implementing a new product, or running effective meetings, for example. They looked for innovative ways of doing things. Passion for their work gave them confidence to stand for the things that mattered. Determination to keep going, though things were falling apart. They’re what form the core of the manifesto!
4. What is the greatest learning you’ve had?
Diversify your wealth. Do not rely on one income source. The same day I went part time, I received an email from my advertising agent that they are closing down the business. What kind of luck is that? If they were my only source of revenue, I would be in big trouble financially. But because I also have the stationery range, eBooks, prints, and another job, I am fine! I have time to look for another agent without having to make desperate choices to keep the site afloat.
5. Why did you create Red Heel Day?
All of us, I’m sure, work hard for the entire year. But women tend to be hard on themselves, more so than most men. We constantly criticise ourselves, while forgetting all the hard work we put into both work and family life. And we tend to keep quiet about our own achievements because it’s too easily seen as bragging.
A study by KPMG showed that many women, while aspiring to top positions in organisations, didn’t see themselves as leaders. Here at Leaders in Heels, we wanted to put aside a month celebrate these women, and encourage them to celebrate themselves and all they’ve accomplished. And yes, that means you!
I wanted to encourage women to pause to celebrate their achievements. Look back and reflecting on all the amazing things they accomplished is a key trait of a good leader. So I created Red Heel Day for women to have a place where they feel comfortable sharing their achievements with everyone. And I wanted to acknowledge women for all they do in their everyday lives, that normally goes overlooked. And who knows? They might inspire other men and women!
6. Why are you excited for Red Heel Day?
I’m excited to see what we can be inspired to do by sharing encouraging each other, and promoting and celebrating each other’s achievements.
For the Red Heel Day Sydney event, I’m looking forward to the speeches from our great speakers.
We will be also running a creativity wall – asking guests to help us come up with creative ideas on how else Leaders in Heels can fulfil its mission; what else we can do to inspire and empower more women. I can’t wait to see everyone’s answers and make Leaders in Heels even bigger and better in the year to come!