07/29/13 | Uncategorized

Up Next on Lightning Lessons: Founder of TRUSTe and Match.com Explains Why Scarlett O’Hara is Her Role Model

A new series where we sit down with our next Lightning Lessons speaker and learn a little more about them. Join us for our next session with Fran Maier.

By Lauren Kim (Events Coordinator, Women 2.0)

This week, superstar founder of two hugely successful companies, TRUSTe and Match.com, Fran Maier tells us that ‘“‘Timing’ is everything (almost),” and dishes about the merits of being Scarlett O’Hara. To hear more from Fran, register for our upcoming live broadcast of Lightning Lessons #5 with Fran Maier.

What is the one thing you wish you knew at the start of your entrepreneurial journey?

That “Timing” is everything (almost).

What do you love most about your job?

The variety of companies I’m advising, the amount of learning, and the opportunity to make a difference.

What is your favorite or most inspiring book that you would recommend to founders (and why)?

“Crossing the Chasm”, by Geoffrey Moore (1990).  While a bit dated now, the mantra “Just Ship It” makes sense in the craziness of [a startup] where things are never perfect.  Also more recently, the “Four Hour Workweek” by Tim Ferris.

Where is the one place you go to relax and get away from the pressures of startup life?

In the winter there is nothing like skiing to get you into the present. I also enjoy my second home in Santa Fe, NM.

Who is your greatest role model and what would you ask them if you could meet her or him for coffee?

As a young woman, I always loved the spunk and entrepreneurial attitude of Gone With the Wind’s Scarlett O’Hara and the optimism [O’Hara expresses in her famous quote] “…tomorrow is another day.” As I’ve gotten older I see many of her flaws much more clearly, but in a way her naiveté was an advantage. The question: Did you ever find fulfillment?

What do you envision the future will look like in the year 2020?

I’m hopeful that the massive online education movement will enhance the lives of millions providing skills and narrow the inequality gap.

If you missed it, check out the video above to watch Fran explain her three lessons learned, and don’t forget to register for upcoming sessions!


Fran addressed the following Lessons Learned:

  1. Go For It

  2. Ask For Help

  3. Do The Deal

What is Lightning Lessons?

Lightning Lessons is a weekly, Wednesday morning, live broadcast where Women 2.0 sits down with a tech innovator to learn about the game-changing stories of their startup journey and the hard lessons they learned along the way. Take a quick 10 minutes out of your day to learn from the mistakes and feats of your predecessors. Innovators jump in a Google Hangout On Air moderated by a Women 2.0 team member for a bit of story-time and the whole thing is broadcast on Google+ for your viewing pleasure. See the full lineup of past and upcoming speakers, and catch up on last week’s session with Mark Peter Davis (Founder, Interplay Ventures).

Read on to learn a little more about our upcoming Lightning Lessons #5 speaker Fran Maier.

Fran Maier
, TRUSTe Founder and Chair of the Board

FranMeierFran Maier is serial entrepreneur, general manager, and brand builder with nearly 20 years experience in internet businesses. She currently serves as Founder and Chair of the Board of TRUSTe, the leading privacy trustmark and solutions provider, in addition to several other board and advisory roles for emerging startups. Fran’s career, from co-founder to Match.com to CEO at TRUSTe, has made her an experienced agent of change and growth, particularly in companies that build brands and results by establishing trust with online consumers. In addition to her expertise in online privacy, she is also known for her expertise in social networking, brand building, business development, and marketing.

Fran speaks and writes widely on issues of online privacy, marketing, and social networking.  She has represented TRUSTe in front of domestic and foreign regulatory audiences, including the Federal Trade Commission, Congressional committees, and foreign data protection commissioners. In 2009, Fran won a Stevie Award for Women in Business for Best Executive (in the category of Service Businesses with less than 100 employees.) In 2010, AlwaysOn named Fran among the Top 25 Women in Tech to Watch in Silicon Valley.  In 2011, San Francisco Business Times named Fran among the 150 Most Influential Women in Bay Area Business. Fran holds a BA and MBA from Stanford University and lives in San Francisco.

What are you most excited to learn from Fran?


Lauren Kim (@LaurenJisoo) currently serves as the Events Coordinator at Women 2.0.  Lauren holds a B.A. in Development Studies (study of developing nations) from U.C. Berkeley and graduated from Phillips Exeter Academy. She is passionate about social entrepreneurship and women’s issues. In her spare time, she competes in hackathons and snowboards.



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