RUNA MAGNUS is an entrepreneur, founder of the Connected Women network, and a personal branding expert from Iceland. She was named one of the Top 20 Business Women To Follow On Twitter by Forbes.
Did you become an entrepreneur to make money or be in control, or both?
Being an entrepreneur is linked to my core value of having freedom and being an independent woman.
So it’s not about cash?
For me it has also been a way to bring about the change I want to see in this world and earn a good living by doing what I love to do. From time to time, I’ve had to turn each coin many times, making sure I’m spending my resources in a way that gives me back the highest rate of investment. I’m financially risk aware.
Can you elaborate?
I mean with my investments, it is vitally important for me to understand the investment to the core and make my decisions from that point, rather than picking up on the latest trend. What sticks out are the moments when I’ve sold my businesses. Am I selling for the right price? Is this the right time etc? What am I going to do once I’ve sold it? But these have been the moments that have been the most transformative in my life as well — when one door closes a new golden gate has opened up for me.
Is money important?
Yes. Money can give you security. It can help you get the best talent in your team, it can help out in various ways. However, you need to have a healthy inner relationship with money to be able to handle it in a way that serves your big picture.
What was your first impulse buy after becoming financially successful?
I bought a ticket for me, my kids and partner to travel to London together. It was a trip of luxury and fun, doing all the fun stuff London has to offer. They’re wonderful memories.
Are you a spender or a saver?
A bit of both. I used to be more of a saver, but nowadays I’m loving the extra luxury I can afford.
Card or cash?
A debit card. I like to spend money I own, not money I will perhaps one day earn.
What was your biggest financial mistake?
Putting my money and resources into a business concept with people who, at the end of the day, were never meant to work together. That was painful, and a very valuable lesson for me.
What do you think was your best financial move?
Creating the investment business with nine other women business leaders in 2008.
How should people brand themselves in the modern world?
Brand your authentic self first. When you know yourself to the core and you are unafraid to step into the world as you are, that is always super-sexy. People love and admire other people not afraid to be who they really are. Not showing off. People will instantly trust your ability to do what you say you will do for them.
What was your first job, and what did you buy with the money?
My first job was babysitting my nephews when I was 12 years old. They were two months, four years and eight years and my role was to take care of them during the day. I bought myself a pair of jeans with my first pay cheque. What a pair those were!