The former door-to-door saleswoman of fax machines and office copiers, Blakely cut the feet off a pair of panty hose to fix her “unsightly panty lines,” and voilà, the idea for Spanx was born. Sales last year were $150 million.
Her secret to success: “My mother really encouraged me to trust my gut as a woman. She always told me that I have the answers within. I observed my friends’ mothers telling them things, giving them advice, thoughts, or recommendations. My mother didn’t do that. She taught me to trust that I had the answers at a young age. Even at 8 years old, I’d ask her what I should do and she’d say, ‘What do you think you should do?’
“I kept the idea for Spanx inside for one year. I trusted my gut the entire time, even though I had no background in hosiery. My intuition allowed me to listen to my voice to guide me in the entire process.”
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