Fran Hauser: Leading with Kindness

6 years ago by

Being a business owner is a part of my job I rarely speak about, yet it comes with so many questions, so many traps and so many joys. It’s also a new day where everything we do has to be redefined and in that, we need guidance. That’s why I look up to Fran Hauser so much. Her new book, The Myth of the Nice Girl: Achieving a Career You Love Without Becoming a Person You Hate is a refreshing take on how to be in the work space, how to deal with the many challenges that come with being an employer or an employee. The conversations flowed effortlessly, and i really enjoyed my hour with Fran Hauser. I hope you do too…

[podcast_episode episode=”269957″ ]

On being a manager from a young age…
I grew up in an Italian speaking home. I was pretty much the general manager of our household because my parents didn’t speak English at all. My father was a stone mason and my mother was a tailor. They each had their own business and I pretty much ran their businesses. I was in the first grade doing invoicing for my dad’s business and doing marketing for my mom’s business. You know creating the logo and business cards, working with a local printer. I really gained a sense of responsibility, hard work and grit from a very young age and that really shaped who I am today.

On what she learned from her mother’s style of business…
I watched her body language. The way she took up space when she needed to be assertive, and her eye contact. She never raised her voice, was never mean. She was very matter of fact and direct. But the thing I noticed the most was the way her body language changed.

On the importance of non-verbal communication…
In writing the book, one of the things I learned is the statistic around communicating an effective message. 7% of it is about the words you use and 93% of it is everything else, it’s all the non-verbal stuff. As women, the way that we show up, in any situation, if we’re negotiating, trying to influence someone to do something, really being cognizant of the way you’re showing up and taking up space.



On the role of empathy in being nice…
For me, a big part of being nice is being empathetic. When you enter into a room, it’s getting into the other person’s head and understanding what’s motivating them, what they want to get out of this? What do they need to get out of this? As opposed to entering the room thinking these are the things I need to get out of this. That energy is a very different type of energy and I don’t think it serves you as well.

On feeling like an imposter for a long time…
I was the first in my family to go to college, I didn’t have mentors. I was very shy, I didn’t have a lot of confidence. I felt very much an imposter syndrome. I think it was because I was an immigrant and when I started school, didn’t speak English and it always stuck with me that I felt different.

On taking risks and reinvention..
If I made the move and it didn’t work out, I still had great experience, a great reputation, I was married but didn’t have children yet, and it felt like a risk I could take. I always ask myself, what is the worst thing that can happen? If I think about my whole entire career, the one consistent theme is reinvention. I do feel like I’ve reinvented myself.

On asking for more…
We tell ourselves we should just be grateful. I’m making a good salary, I should be grateful. But I always say, if you don’t ask, the answer is always no. It’s worth asking. This abundance mindset, is something I think about a lot. Not just from a money perspective but from a collaboration perspective and the way I think about supporting other women. I very much come from an abundance mindset. I feel if you win, I don’t have to lose, we can both win.

Fran Hauser: Leading with Kindness

On her investing…
I get in very early. I’m an angel investor which means I’m one of the first investors. Often it’s before the product has launched, but sometimes just after. In terms of what makes me pull the trigger, the founder is really important. It’s a long term relationship you’re entering into. It takes a good five to seven years for the company to either exit or for the company to dissolve. We’re spending a lot of time together, I’m advising and opening up my network to them, so I have to really feel a special connection to the founder.

On the power of being nice…
I feel that to be successful in business, it’s all about relationships. It’s not just who you know, it’s your connection with that person. Do they trust you? I really do believe there is so much power in being nice, being empathetic and compassionate because of the relationships that form.

On evidence-based confidence…
My best advice is to go back and really draw on your evidence-based confidence. For me, I will literally write down things I’ve done over the course of my career that have been amazing where I have added or created value. If I write it and just seeing it, it makes me feel confident and allows me to get away from that imposter syndrome. When I feel confident, I know I come across more confidently and take up more space.

On her advice to her younger self…
Eat whatever you want! Because your metabolism will slow down.

Pace University
Capturing the Friedmans
Hello Giggles

A special thank you to The Refinery Hotel in NYC for letting us record in their lovely space. Fran’s book, The Myth of the Nice Girl: Achieving a Career You Love Without Becoming a Person You Hate is out and a great read! For regular updates on what she’s up to, be sure to check out her Instagram!


Add yours
  • venezia30123 June, 12 2018, 10:08 / Reply

    Thank you very much Francesca & Garance,
    this was the best (for me)and most important, supporting Pardon My French podcast ever
    Cause I am trying to set up a business idea on the base of that will everybody will be paid that they can live on it,sustainability ,same chances ,etc… aka just to be fair; (and I feel ,I am often looked as somebody who is in a marxistic way crazy and that can`t be the base to be productive and especially let you now that you are completely “naive” in your business wise thinking.
    AndI have seen quite a lot at 51.Life is a roller coaster . I don`t wanna waste anymore time with surroundings I can stand for.Or playing person I am not.
    Thank you for this supporting talk.It`ll be keeping me on my path ,I am convinced about.

  • Thank you for your kind words! We’re so happy to hear this episode made an impact on you. Best of luck with your business! x Carie

  • Thank you Garance & Fran for this conversation on leadership with empathy and touching on so many important topics that come into play whether we work for ourselves or for a company. To always maintain an entrepreneurial spirit serves us so well in regards to staying actively true to who we are and want to be. Thank you also for the reminder that life is short because it puts things like “crossroad” decisions into perspective where courage is needed to take on the much harder but truer road.

    “Rester toujours si douce” is something my elementary school teacher said to me before she bid farewell to our class. Words to go by in spite of all the egos, meanness, small and narrow mindedness,…we may encounter.


  • Stefani June, 18 2018, 12:26 / Reply

    I loved this podcast episode. She is inspiring!

  • Teresa arnaus June, 18 2018, 11:47 / Reply

    Hola Team Atelier Doré and Fran,

    ¡What a podcast! It’s perfect to start a monday. It’s motivating, it’s kind, it’s genuine and most of all it’s so so true.

    I couldn’t thank you enough Garance for this podcast. I personally think that’s that the secret of real feminism. It’s the conversation that we create
    through out own experience and making each other stronger without putting any names or titles on achivements (or failures). It’s the vision that unites us, and not necesarily the path we take.

    It was beautifully portrayed in this.

    So GRACIAS!!

    Besos from a mexican fan (with a terrible english grammar).

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