Eileen Fisher: How to Use Your Voice to Build Your Business

For years, Eileen Fisher struggled to convey the vision behind her clothes–she wanted the garments she designed to speak for themselves. And she feared rejection, even as her artist friends consistently had their designs turned down by retailers.

“I had trouble finding my voice,” says Fisher, who founded her namesake fashion brand in 1984. “I had trouble speaking and certainly articulating my idea was.”

But she could listen. Fisher spent her first buyer show paying attention to buyers and other designers, learning about pricing strategies, how to make her clothes more relevant and salable, and what tweaks she needed to make to her products. By her second boutique show, she had buyers lining up to order her clothes.

The ability to clearly covey any idea is crucial to the success of any company. Great storytelling can help you land a pitch, inspire a team, and sell to potential customers. Over the years, Fisher has continuously worked to keep her company in line with its original vision. She says everything falls apart when internal teams are each trying to create something different–one of the key takeaways from this week’s episode of What I Know, featuring Fisher.

Listen for this and more in the player below, or wherever you get your podcasts. And please subscribe to What I Know, our new podcast in which entrepreneurs and visionaries recount how they’ve gotten where they are–and what they’ve discovered that has helped them along the way.

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