“One of the greatest barriers to approaching opportunities and achieving success is a lack of confidence. And we have all found out that at some stage in our career we felt unworthy or under qualified for the job we wished to pursue,” said Louise Phelan, VP of Global Operations at PayPal in one the more inspirational speeches which took place the TheMarker’s Technovation Conference in Tel Aviv.
Phelan’s words of wisdom resonated with the audience. Speaking from her own personal experiences and opening up about the lessons she learned throughout her career she spoke about overcoming fears, understanding that insecurities are shared by everyone, and always strive to learn from “awesome failures.”
“It’s ok to be nervous,” she said, “because one of the benefits of being nervous is that you’re new to the field and can, therefore, ask questions that others may not have asked or approach the problem differently. And the most important thing this is to always focus on the learning.”
As one of the most influential women in the global hi-tech community, Phelan also specifically addressed female entrepreneurs, urging them to leave their comfort zone and challenge themselves by taking risks. “I would tell every female, each morning when you get up, instead of taking a spoonful of coffee- take a spoonful of confidence.”
Phelan grew up in a family of 17 children in a village in rural Ireland. She qualified as a nurse, a career which she never pursued, and then went back to school to study law and economics. “I did 16 interviews to get hired for the job at PayPal- I wasn’t so good, the hiring conditions weren’t so good,” she reminisced. Today, 11 years later, Phelan manages 2,600 employees across Europe, the Middle East, and Africa to lead the world’s major monetary and financial shifts.
Israel’s leading business paper, TheMarker, sponsored the Technovation – one of the largest international high-tech conferences in Israel. Each year, the conference brings together some of the industry’s top global entrepreneurs and influencers to discuss the emerging of new technology platforms, their potential and possible integration with tech giants and the impact this may have on our daily lives.