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Breakfast Television: The term ‘GirlBoss’ might be more harmful than helpful

This week I had the pleasure of joining Dina & Sid on Breakfast Television where we chatted about how words like #GirlBoss are no longer empowering.

The term #Girlboss was publically coined by Sophia Amoruso, founder of Nasty Gal, in 2014, as the title of her memoir. On June 1, 2022, she herself tweeted asking the world to stop using this term.

So what changed?

Society is coming to the realization that terms like #Girlboss is creating a culture of burnout and stress for entrepreneurs who identify as women, especially during the pandemic. It is often associated with being young and white, putting a narrow view on what success looks like for women and adding to white feminism. In reality, women have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic which has prompted many to shift priorities in an effort to focus on flexibility and inclusivity in work. Terms like #Girlboss only set us all back in entrepreneurship and the workplace.

What can we as women do to move away from this problematic mindset?

Drop the girl and just call yourself a boss

Don't limit yourself to just your gender. Focus on your accomplishments and journey by using more inclusive language and behaviours. This will result in a shift in mindset which could have a ripple effect across society. You're not a little girl trying to survive in a man's world. You're a woman creating an incredible path for others to follow.

Understand the importance of language

Let's face the facts, men don't have language like this around their careers and it's time we drop it too. It's time to listen, build conversation and truly work together to shift what a successful leader looks like. By shifting this conversation and dropping these terms we together (with men) are focusing on accomplishments vs gender.


This is just the beginning...

We have acknowledged that this term and terms like this are problematic. It's now time to take action to build change. How are you changing the language in your home and workplace to empower women?


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