Marissa Mayer’s career has involved its moments of controversy, it’s true. Serving as the CEO of Yahoo! the last four years, she’ll soon be stepping down following the company’s merger with AOL, and not all her business practices while at Yahoo!’s helm were met with praise. But there’s no denying the impact Mayer has had in the tech industry and the fierce work ethic that allowed her to achieve it. Straight out of Stanford, she joined Google in 1999 as its 20th employee — and the company’s first female engineer — and after moving to Yahoo!, she ranked as the youngest CEO on Fortune’s 50 Most Powerful Women list.
Here are some quotes illustrating Mayer’s inimitable moxie that are sure to leave you inspired.
- "I always did something I was a little not ready to do. I think that's how you grow. When there's that moment of 'Wow, I'm not really sure I can do this,' and you push through those moments, that's when you have a breakthrough."
- “I was always good at math and science, and I never realized that that was unusual or somehow undesirable.”
- "I realized in all the cases where I was happy with the decision I made, there were two common threads: Surround myself with the smartest people who challenge you to think about things in new ways, and do something you are not ready to do so you can learn the most."
- "Work for someone who believes in you, because when they believe in you they'll invest in you."
- “If I had been more self-conscious about being a woman, it would have stifled me.”
- “I refuse to be stereotyped.”
- "If you can find something that you're really passionate about, whether you're a man or a woman comes a lot less into play. Passion is a gender-neutralizing force."
- I pace myself by taking a week-long vacation every four months.
- "If you can push through that feeling of being scared, that feeling of taking a risk, really amazing things can happen."
- "You can't have everything you want, but you can have the things that really matter to you."
- “It wasn’t until I was a professional woman mentoring other girls in math and science that I learned that openly liking math and science is unusual for girls. It’s actually considered far too nerdy and far too much for the boys.”
- “Geeks are people who love something so much that all the details matter.”
- “You can be good at technology and like fashion and art. You can be good at technology and be a jock. You can be good at technology and be a mom. You can do it your way, on your terms.”
- “I didn’t want to lose my sense of myself in my profession.”
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