Finding a Mentor as a Creative

Bambach, who works as Mr President's chief creative officer and co-founder of She Says. (Image: Twitter)

Bambach, who works as Mr President's chief creative officer and co-founder of She Says. (Image: Twitter)

Aussie creative Laura Jordan Bambach is the founder of SheSays, a network that runs free mentorship and events to women in creative industries. We talked to Canberra-born and London-based Bambach, 43, about mentoring, confidence and how to deal with “oh shit” moments. By Grace Jennings-Edquist.

What's your advice to women going into a career where they will have to be vocal in a sea of men?
Believe in yourself and your awesomeness; you’re not there by accident, regardless of how you feel sometimes. Be honest with yourself about what you still need to get better at. Keep going. Make sure you get the credit you deserve. Listen, stay hungry for knowledge and be generous with it.

You started your own digital design studio while at uni. What’s the best bit of advice anyone offered you when you were getting started?
I love starting things, that focus and tenacity always been in me. There was no advice as such that I remember when I was getting started, but a lot of encouragement. Rosie Cross (the founder of geek girl) encouraged me to learn and sharpen the skills I needed to work with her, and that was a stepping stone to starting my own business when I saw there was a space in the market. People like Simon Waterfall and Mark Cridge have supported me in my endeavours both in work and with things like SheSays. So I would say having people who believe in you and spur you on is the most important thing. 

Many people say “loving what you do” makes the hard work of starting your own business worthwhile. Have you ever had any “oh shit, what have I done” moments despite loving your work, and how do you find the courage to continue?
Of course! It comes with the territory. Just learn from it, don’t take it personally (as much as it hurts) and go again. The more you push yourself the more you’ll be leaning in to the unknown, into fear and failure. But that’s where all the brilliant stuff is too, and its always going to outweigh those miserable moments. Experiencing these deep emotions is where I draw all my energy from; I love stepping into the void!

Check out a SheSays event near you here (regularly in Sydney and Melbourne, and sometimes in Brisbane!)