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One hundred and seventeen times, that's the number of times I've been rejected for funding while pitching my business, soona, to banks, angel investors and venture capitalists.

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It's not every day that a TV show can offer its audience tried and true tips for succeeding in their real-life endeavors. However, that has been one of greatest selling points of the popular reality series Shark Tank which showcases rising entrepreneurs pitching their business concepts to a panel of renowned investors, referred to throughout the show as "sharks." The entrepreneurs who step into the shark tank not only offer up their best business pitches, but must also come prepared to answer more cuthroat questions on their company's services, practices and revenue. While every contestant aspires to get any one shark to bite, thus enabling them to walk away with financing for their company, it is no surprise that convincing more than one shark to invest is far more challenging.

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Fundraising isn't always fun. It can be a long, agonizing, and often emotional process. Emails go unanswered; pitches fall on deaf ears; and many times investors just don't get it. This constant feedback loop (or lack thereof) can be taxing on even the most seasoned pro and can push founders to believe that they have to change and become more aggressive, tougher, and do anything possible to get to that yes. Don't fall into this trap. Here's how to remain true to yourself and feel confident in your own story and pitch.

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Photo Courtesy of Janine Sickmeyer

If you're someone, like myself, who loves to follow inspirational pages on Instagram then you have definitely seen countless quotes about a very uncomfortable topic– failure.

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When I look back on my journey as an entrepreneur, the path has been filled with many twists and turns, including moments of sheer panic, grounded calm, enormous fear, painful failure, utter exhaustion, exhilaration, pride, incredible fun, and huge joy accomplishing a goal. Amidst this adventurous path, what stays with me is a love for birthing and building a brand and company. You can actually watch the spirit of the company grow and flourish along with its revenues.

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Photo Courtesy of Joy Mangano

How many times have you looked at something and thought: I wish this did more? And how many times have you thought long and hard about what else you could make it do, if you had the resources, time, and a factory-load of people working for you?

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Influential Voices

Our mission

Swaay is dedicated to elevating female voices and changing the narrative by celebrating the stories of women who are challenging the status quo and giving them a platform to participate in more meaningful conversations.
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