Anna Wintour: “Everyone should be sacked at least once”
The most powerful woman in fashion and editor-in-chief of American Vogue, Anna Wintour, has candidly revealed her secrets to success as part of a new book.
In an interview with Alastair Campbell for Winners and How They Succeed, Wintour stated: “I think everyone should get sacked at least once. It forces you to look at yourself. It is important to have setbacks, because that is the reality of life. Perfection doesn’t exist.”
Her career in fashion journalism began in 1970, when she was hired as an editorial assistant at Harper’s and Queen. She later moved to New York to undertake the role of assistant fashion editor at Harper’s Bazaar, from which she was fired after just nine months. Wintour went on to work for New York magazine and House & Garden, before being appointed editor of Vogue in 1988.
Wintour is credited with producing the first ever celebrity cover, which propelled Vogue to market leader status, eclipsing competitors, such as Elle and Harper’s Bazaar, in the process. The longstanding editor also received an OBE in 2008 for her services to British journalism and British fashion in the United States.
The eldest daughter of Charles Wintour, a former editor of The Evening Standard, she undoubtedly has publishing in her blood. However, Wintour admits she has no idea how to make a dress, couldn’t create an image from a photo shoot and can’t write, instead she responds to other people’s talents. Her most surprising trick is pretending to be sure of herself, even if she doesn’t feel it. “It makes it clearer for everyone else. Most people prevaricate. I decide fast.”
Wintour rises at 5 am daily and enjoys going into the office, but also explains the importance of switching off: “I don’t have a high-powered life out of work. I like to go to the country for the weekend with the kids and the dog and play tennis. I am very good at turning off; I don’t like the city at weekends. I have a garden I adore, a life that is very private – the polar opposite of all of this.”
To purchase Winners and How They Succeed by Alastair Campbell visit here.