Our heroine has no days off, but her family has wonderful traditions. Her son never misses classes, but he is sure that there is no better mother in the world.
The ZASPORT brand of Anastasia Zadorina equips not only the Russian Olympic team and Moscow metro employees, but also produces sport & casual clothes that everyone can buy. And in 2016, Anastasia invented and sewed costumes for the characters of the TV project "Good night, kids!" But the main thing is that the founder and designer of the ZASPORT company is only 31 years old. And she has a 6-year-old son, Mark.
Anastasia Zadorina told Letidor about how to be a successful businesswoman and at the same time a caring mother, how not to allow a child to skip classes, but at the same time give him all the best.
Anastasia, your progress is impressive. Admit it, is this how the affirmations work, or are you in luck?
I just always clearly set goals for myself and tried to go step by step towards what I had outlined. But the main achievement of my life is not a business, but a child. I love Mark very much and I do everything for him.
Until the age of 14, you lived in Germany. Do you think this experience influenced you? Still, the upbringing of children in Russia is quite different from how they are brought up in Europe.
Yes, in Russia and Germany people have different mentality. I felt this difference when I returned to Moscow. For example, I was very surprised that no one greets on the street.
In Germany, I used to smile at everyone, find out how things were, but here they looked at me strangely and even condemningly.
But now the situation is changing for the better, in my opinion, people are becoming more open and welcoming. As for the desire to work, I cannot say that my childhood in Germany somehow influenced my choice to start my own business.
Many successful people in their interviews say that they have achieved a lot, because either they lived in very poor families, or their parents kept them tight in financial terms, or they invested in children in full. And who or what can you say thank you to?
First of all, I am very grateful to mom and dad for the upbringing and education they gave me. Parents always inspire children, first of all, by their own example, but the most important thing is personal desire.
I have always wanted to study, have my own business or a decent job, where I could develop and climb the career ladder.
Did your parents support you in this desire?
Supported. But initially, 10 years ago, they did not quite understand the direction of design and did not consider fashion as a business. And so they had no idea what could come of it.
But all the same, from the very beginning, my parents believed in me.
But many parents raise princesses from their daughters, assuring them that only the prince should make money on a white horse and a castle.
It seems to me that in every family (only if we are not talking about families where national traditions provide for a different way of life), a woman should also work and earn money. There are different situations in life.
For example, during the coronavirus pandemic, many businesses collapse. And if before that only one partner in a pair realized himself, then such families, unfortunately, now have a particularly hard time. I think that many people will draw conclusions from this situation.
But even without the pandemic, fashion is a very difficult and risky business direction. Weren't you afraid of failure, loss of money?
Fashion is very unpredictable, and unpredictable in everything - this applies to both fashion trends and fashion as a business direction. But I believe that you need to be ready for everything.
I always say that we can't just design and create.Everywhere, first of all, the business model must be correctly built. Many global brands live according to this scheme.
In all honesty, we can admit that modern girls are more seized by the desire to build a career than to give birth to children. And when they are asked with a career, then very few people decide to get pregnant, because, whatever one may say, this is “a break from production”. How did having a baby fit into your life?
Six years ago, I was already building a career with might and main. During pregnancy, I worked non-stop and within a month after giving birth, I returned to my busy schedule.
It seems to me that the sooner you go to work, the faster you will overcome postpartum depression.
Of course, there are different situations, for example, during pregnancy it is difficult for girls to walk or suffer from severe toxicosis, but, fortunately, this has passed me. I was even more active than usual, so I was able to combine both work and personal life.
But a small child requires a tremendous amount of attention. And business is also a "child". Have you ever reproached yourself for giving your son more of your attention if it wasn't for work? Many successful moms face this kind of guilt complex.
You know, I had a lot of conversations about this with my friends and acquaintances. I have sometimes heard such reproaches addressed to me, but I have never entered into disputes on this topic. Mark and I always spend all our free time and holidays together, and on weekdays we are constantly in touch. Plus, he has a clear schedule, to which I taught him from the cradle.
And now, at his six years old, Mark speaks competently, goes in for sports, does not miss workouts, knows two languages, in September he will go to first grade.
The son has an inner discipline. And I believe that this is my merit.
In fact, I know many examples when mothers stay at home with their children, and their children end up being less well-mannered than those who work a lot.
Tell us what a business mom's day off looks like?
I do not have days off as such, because often on Saturday or Sunday there can be appointments or some things to do. Plus, I am absolutely always in touch. Therefore, by the way, now during quarantine I am not afraid of the need to be online 24/7, for me this is a common situation regardless of the day of the week.
But at the same time, we have family traditions that we all honor. For example, on Sunday, my parents, brother and sister with children come to our home with Mark. We're going to have a big family dinner. I have already taught Mark to do this. He is always looking forward to such meetings.
Are you a strict mother or permissive? For example, the famous chef Gordon Ramsay frankly says that his children do not receive any bonuses - they fly in economy class, they have little pocket money and inexpensive clothes.
As for Gordon Ramsay, I've heard a lot about this kind of upbringing. It even happens that children make such a decision on their own. Most often these are children who study abroad from an early age (despite the fact that their parents are Russian and live in Moscow). It's just that they develop such a mentality there.
I don’t think it’s bad, but personally I wouldn’t do that. My mother’s heart is very soft.
I would rather give Mark all the best to my own detriment.
My parents did the same, and now I am raising my son in this way.
Aren't you afraid to spoil your son?
If possible, I will always buy and give the child what he wants. But this will happen only for some of his achievements and merits. I want him to understand that everything is given for a reason. That is, he sets a goal for himself, goes to it and, having achieved it, gets what he wanted.
Does Mark already know what his mom does and how the money is made?
Mark knows the ZASPORT company, knows that these are clothes and that there is a chain of stores. He sees publications about me in the press and is very proud of me. True, once he saw me on the podium and now for some reason thinks that I am also a model. He tells everyone about it too (Laughs).
I do not yet devote it to any serious, global issues of my business. Let the child remain a child and learn everything gradually.
Now the main thing for him is to study and play sports. Everything has its time.
Probably, the son considers you the kindest mother in the world!
Yes, Mark says so (Smiles). And all because I do not shout, I do not swear. Although, of course, I can reprimand him if he behaves incorrectly. I talk a lot with him on completely different topics, and he always listens to me.
It seems to me that this is right when you are not only a mother for a child, but also a friend, and he is not afraid to share everything with you. It's better than he will then share something intimate with strangers, who are not always good.
Are you considering an option for your son to study abroad?
For now, I definitely don't want Mark to study abroad. I am completely satisfied with education in Russia - it is stronger here. In Europe, the test system is taught and children are not so busy. In our country, on the contrary, they are more demanding. And this is much better!
In general, it seems to me that everything depends not so much on the location as on the family and on the wishes of the child himself.
I don’t think that in Europe they will be able to give more knowledge, and my son will become smarter and wiser if he leaves somewhere abroad.
Rather, it will simply affect his social qualities.
I have many familiar families whose children study abroad. Therefore, I know both the advantages of such training and the big disadvantages.
Is a child a plus or a minus for a business woman? Many people note that children tie their hands to some extent, because parents can no longer afford to take risks in business or dive into it 100%.
As I always like to say, those who don't take risks don't drink champagne. But, of course, before we take any important step - not only in business, but in general, in life - we all always think about our children.
It seems to me that all parents take care of their children and want, first of all, safety, comfort for them and for their relatives and friends. I'm not an exception.
Photo: press service of Anastasia Zadorina
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