Miroslava Duma is the founder of Buro 24/7, a fashion blog and now media outlet based in Russia. She has been one of the biggest fashion leaders to originate from the market.
Having been an avid follower of her activity, I noticed a few months ago that she was posting more on tech and start-ups – developing partnerships with the giants like Google, Facebook and Alibaba. Curious to know what all of these little hints were laddering up to, Duma recently launched Fashion Tech Lab. Her own start up in the Tech and Fashion space – two of my passion pastimes.
Fashion Tech Lab is said to be a hybrid venture – part investment fund, accelerator and experimental lab with the core objective of driving new tech and innovation within the fashion industry. More details on the new venture can be found on Business of Fashion.
What I find so inspiring about this is that Duma with a background in fashion and business took time to meet with and learn from the heads of the tech giants to cover her background research to start this company. An opportunity that many cannot afford – either with financial or network limitations. However, an approach similar to this could easily be taken on a smaller scale, by reaching out to inspiring and successful leaders either in your network or extended.
I would love to take a couple months, head to Silicon Valley or an up and coming start up city like Tel Aviv and learn from all of the people driving the innovation and industry in the tech space. There really is so much knowledge to gain from the people that are doing things differently. From stepping out of your comfort zone and into a space in which you know nothing – ready to learn everything.
People like Tim Ferris speak of the Real-World MBA, taking the leap to put yourself out there and learn as much as you can either from people within the industry. An alternate approach is using the investment you would make on an MBA to start a company or invest in companies acting as a VC to learn business strategy and management in real-time.
Studying for an MBA is a thought that I consistently revisit, weighing up the opportunity cost of the degree from a cost, education and connection perspective. Still yet to come to a decision on that subject but its examples like this that make me rethink the traditional way of doing things. It is amazing to see leaders like Miroslava Duma building innovative businesses and learning from those around her then making it happen.
Similarly to the advice I received from Anya Hindmarch (full post here), it is important to take a risk and start something. It won’t be perfect, but get it out there and iterate as you go along.
It will be interesting to see where Fashion Tech Lab goes from here, excited to be following the journey. So inspired by women like Miroslava Duma who are pushing the boundaries and reshaping industries, proving that anything is possible with a dream and a whole lot of ambition (+ capital) backing that. 👊👊👊