Katy Perry Uses Her Forbes Cover to Inspire Other Women to Succeed in Business
Katy Perry will appear on the cover of the July 20 issue of Forbes magazine with the title "America's Pop Export." And because she's Katy Perry, she will do so wearing a hilariously cornball suit jacket covered in rhinestone dollar signs.
However, inside her profile, Perry is all business.
This year, she clocks in as the third highest paid celebrity, raking in a pretax earning of $135 million in the past 12 months, mostly from touring, behind only boxers Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao. She's proud of her status as an entrepreneur and the way she truly owns her hokey image, as she should be. And she doesn't want to be the only one. Her whole reason for appearing on the Forbes cover, which is graced by white billionaires more often than not, is to inspire other women to succeed in business.
"Before accepting the offer to be on the cover of Forbes, I was told that a lot of women have previously shied away from doing it," Perry wrote on her Instagram, sharing the cover. "I wondered if it was because they thought socially it would look like they were flaunting or bragging or it wasn't a humble decision. Ladies, there is a difference between being humble and working hard to see the fruits of your labor blossom and your dreams realized. Hopefully this cover can be an inspiration to women out there that it's okay to be proud of hard-earned success and that there is no shame in being a boss."
Of course, because she's Katy Perry, she added, "Also... don't think that I didn't celebrate this moment by going straight to Taco Bell and getting my crunch wrap supreme."
Yet the serious side of Perry's comments feed into problems that a long line of female bosses have faced, in attempting to push back against a culture that unwittingly tries to steer women away from holding positions of power.
Boss versus Bossy. Recently, Sheryl Sandburg, Facebook's CEO, and Anna Maria Chávez, CEO of Girl Scouts of the USA, organized a campaign combating some of these barriers with a campaign called "Ban Bossy."
"Boys are expected to be assertive, confident and opinionated, while girls should be kind, nurturing and compassionate," they wrote in the Wall Street Journal. "How are we supposed to level the playing field for girls and women if we discourage the very traits that get them there?"
Perry's words hold a lot of weight with the teen girl demographic. It's hard to think of a more powerful role model to encourage young girls to ignore these stereotypes and reach for their own positions of power.
"I am proud of my position as a boss, as a person that runs my own company. I'm an entrepreneur," Perry said in her Forbes profile. "I don't want to shy away from it. I actually want to kind of grab it by its balls."
Hopefully, her example will resonate, and we'll soon be seeing KatyCats swarming at all levels of the business world.