We are all familiar with the phrase ‘imposter syndrome’. That inner voice or narrative that prevents you from being able to see the worth of your own achievements and successes. The damage that this inner voice can inflict is particularly prevalent amongst the ethnic minority and migrant communities.
As a migrant founder of Teleport, Rachel Lee joined Simone Roche MBE on the We PoWEr On podcast season to speak of her experiences of silencing her own imposter syndrome voice:
“As a migrant founder, imposter syndrome really hits hard”, she said. “Like an invisible barrier that you have to break through even more, just because you have that mindset that you’re not from here, people might not want to support me, but that’s not true”.
Take a look at some of Rachel’s top tips for those at the start of their own entrepreneurial journey, and find out how she silenced her own imposter syndrome voice.
Put yourself out there: get on LinkedIn
Everyone understands the power and the importance of social media, but for many of us that doesn’t make it any easier to stick your head above the parapet and add your voice to the LinkedIn feed. This overwhelm was very much felt by Rachel who admitted on the podcast that “I was actually terrified of LinkedIn! Every time I went on there was someone shouting about their achievement, and while there’s nothing wrong with that, I just felt like I hadn’t accomplished as much as this other person”.
She also spoke of how lockdown gave her the boost she needed to take the step and put herself out there: “I realised I needed to stop being so afraid and stop feeling like I wasn’t worth enough […] I just kind of put myself out there and look at all the good that came from it”.
After using her LinkedIn platform with intention, Rachel connected with some vital business contacts who went on to boost her business and get Teleport to where it is today. “Who knew from LinkedIn that you could connect with all these amazing people, and from there, something will come out of it”, she said.
Rachel’s strongest recommendation was to invest the time in finding a support system. Through networking Rachel soon learned that people genuinely do want to help, “everyone’s so lovely and so supportive, especially in the startup community”, she said. “If you are at an early stage and you feel like everything you’re doing is wrong, try and find a support group that would really listen to you and understand you, and therefore would encourage you to keep going forward”. This drive from others is what enabled Rachel to innovate and pivot, and to overcome the inevitable challenges that come from starting a business. “What was really instrumental was knowing that you had a support system to catch you when you fall”.
“If you have a great idea, go ahead, go for it!”
Ultimately, the key thing to remember as you progress through your startup journey is to just keep on going. There’s no blueprint for how to build a business, and no shame in changing tack to find a better way of doing things. As Rachel said, “there’s no set rule on how a business must be built, a lot of businesses struggle, and a lot of them have to pivot”.
If you want to find your support network, why not sign up to our FREE PoWEr UP networking session on Tuesday 26th of April.
To hear Rachel’s full We PoWEr On episode, and learn even more about what you can do to silence your own imposter syndrome voice, click here.