Pair of Female Entrepreneurs Made Up Fake Male Co-Founder to Get More Respect: It Worked

Chris Gaetano
Published Date:
Aug 29, 2017

Startup founders Penelope Gazin and Kate Dwyer, who made an artist's platform called Witchsy, said their company had a lot of trouble getting their emails answered promptly and free of condescension―that is until they added a made up male co-founder named Keith Mann, according to Fast Company. They said that, when they first started, people like outside developers and graphic designers were often slow to respond to messages, and when they did they tended to be rather curt and sometimes unprofessional. When they began corresponding as Keith Mann, however, everything changed. The pair said that their emails no longer took days to get a reply, and that the tone was much more respectful. For instance, they noted that people never addressed them by name in messages, but Keith always was. Despite this, however, the two said that they view Keith as just one more tool they can use to strengthen their business: while they wish such deceptions were not necessary, they also understand that we remain in a day and age where, unfortunately, women are not taken as seriously. 

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