Ivanka Trump's Business Advice for Women

Ivanka Trump says success in the business world is all about confidence, a statement the estimated 11 million women across the country who are majority owners in businesses can attest to.

Trump, 27, the author of "The Trump Card: Playing to Win in Work and Life," sat down with ABC News' Cynthia McFadden and a roundtable of four businesswomen spanning three decades of experience.

VIDEO; Donalds daughter leads a discussion of women in the workplace.Play

The participants were Larisa Terkeltaub, a 26-year-old first-year business student at New York University's Stern School of Business; Joanna Billings, 25, a structural engineer; Gai Spann, a 41-year-old travel agency owner; and Tracey Andrews, a natural specialty foods saleswoman in her 30s.

From how to make it as an assertive woman in business to how to gain financial backing in a tough economic climate to how to get the message out, the women talked candidly about what has changed since their parents' generation and how all can have their own "trump card," even if their father isn't Donald Trump.

The first topic up for discussion was business experience. Terkeltaub asked Trump what experience is necessary to become a successful entrepreneur.

While Trump first acknowledged that experience is obviously still very important, and "you can't fake it," she then explained that the best thing the inexperienced can do to help themselves is to ask intelligent questions of those around them.

Even though Trump concedes "there's a fear that it exposes that inexperience," in reality asking advice and learning from coworkers prevents young people from making more serious mistakes.

Next to ask Trump a question was Billings, who like Trump has followed her father's path into structural engineering. She wanted to know how women can still maintain their feminine side while being aggressive and assertive enough in the workplace.

Trump said the question made her think of quote by Arianna Huffington included in her book. Huffington said, "for a man to be considered cruel, he has to be Joe McCarthy. For a woman to be considered cruel, all she has to do is put you on hold."

Although the women responded with laughter, Trump went on to say that in all seriousness the best way to be an assertive woman in the workplace is "to own it with confidence. If you don't have the confidence, you won't be free to express yourself in an honest and sincere way."

Ivanka Trump's Practical Advice for Businesswomen

The participants touched on some of the nuts and bolts aspects of having your own business, including finding investors and funds, and then getting the word out about your product.

Spann, who owns a full-service travel agency, asked Trump how to get funding and investors for a small business when bank loans are increasingly difficult to obtain during tough economic times.

Trump said that the best place to look for funding currently, particularly for relatively small amounts, is equity -- in other words, offering the investor a slice of ownership in the business.

It's important to "do your homework," she said. "Put together a very solid presentation and think through all the questions somebody may ask you."

Bringing up her own experiences, such as starting her jewelry company in September 2007, Trump stressed the importance of "levering the resources that you have around you."

That's also important for marketing, Trump said.

Tracey Andrews, who sells natural specialty foods in green markets but is looking to expand to restaurants and hotels, wanted to know how to market on a slim budget and make new venues aware of her product.

Citing both her Twitter site, which now has upward of 400,000 followers, and the endless number of local avenues through which to get the word out, Trump encouraged the women to take advantage of what is around them.

"There's so many opportunities to be out there in the community and educate people … on your product."

Finding Your Trump Card

Trump explained how everyone has a trump card, which was the inspiration for her book.

"Everyone has an in," she said. "It's just recognizing the opportunity, and a lot of people don't recognize it."

Whether through school, a friend, a family member or even someone in an elevator, Trump told the women, "Have your eyes open and learn to identify it. Everyone has one."

"The Trump Card: Playing to Win in Work and Life," published by Touchstone Hardcover, hit stores Oct.13. CLICK HERE to read an excerpt.

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