At the monthly Impact for Enterprise Women conference held Friday at the Phoenix Grille, 84-year-young business consultant and entrepreneur, Joan Howard, said that we need to tell people how good we are. She told the audience, “If you don’t, you’ll grow poor, you won’t make any money, and you won’t have any friends.”

She also told the audience that their group now has $5,000 and it will send $300 to the Maricopa Community College system, to show the impact of women’s groups in using our money for education and helping the community.

When Howard first started her speech, she seemed insecure, as she was not well-conversant in the English language, having grown up in a conservative Italian family. She then suggested sending $500 for the gift funds. She continued by saying, “There’s so much freedom when riding a bike or a motorcycle. It’s a gracious feeling. I have been fired from every job I had. You do what you have to do to be noticed and to be successful.”

Howard teasingly bragged she had been fired from every job she had ever had. Many men had told her that they didn’t expect her to succeed, and it turned out she succeeded…and they didn’t.

Karianne Munstedt, a portrait photographer and motivational speaker, followed by saying that she likes to teach women; that real beauty comes from within, and that society’s beauty standards are unattainable. She enjoys her job as she can be a positive role model.

She said, “When younger, I didn’t feel worthy of being in a photo.” The manager would say, “Kari, you’re too fat to be in a photo,” or “Kari, the photographer doesn’t want to work with you.” “Kari, who do you think you are?”

“It wasn’t an easy journey for me, but it encouraged me to help women reach their potential, as well.”

Kari grew up with an abusive parent and felt that if she wasn’t perfect, she would be punished. “All these negative words are just rolling around in our head, telling us we’re not good enough.” She encouraged her audience to think more positive thoughts, and to realize that, instead of focusing on being perfect, they should focus on being the best that they can be.

“All perfectionism is telling us is that we’re not good enough. Real is the new perfect.” She followed by saying, “By throwing out perfectionism and being ourselves, is when we reach our full portion. We don’t always see how beautiful we are. We need to throw the perfection out of the dictionary, as it doesn’t exist.”

She followed by asserting that she would have never reached her full potential if she were still a perfectionist. She emphasized having a positive attitude and telling ourselves that we are special, beautiful, and worthy.

It was truly amazing to see so many successful women, each helping others to succeed and offering each other advice on how to be successful in the workplace.

One new attendee, Sara Abitbol, financial advisor for Edward Jones, came to the “Impact for Enterprising Women” conference for the first time. She had just started working for Edward Jones within this last year. Sara averred that she found the meeting interesting, and she would like to come again, stating that “It was an amazing and fun experience,” and she learned a lot from attending the conference.

It’s quite encouraging and amazing to see strong and competent women succeed in the work place, and possibly becoming CEO of a company.