Every good superhero needs a nemesis. But can you say the same of every super successful executive?
If the women Fortune spoke to are any indication, the answer is yes. In the case of an exec, though, that nemesis doesn’t necessarily need to be a person—it might just as easily be a weekly 10 p.m conference call with Asia or even the traffic between the office and a nice glass of wine at the end of the day.
In this video 12 executives from our Fortune Most Powerful Women community talk about the form taken by their own professional nemeses.
Some of the women had more abstract enemies, like ‘chaos’ for Slack’s Senior Director of Infrastructure Engineering, Julia Grace, or ‘distractions’ for Zillow Group’s board director, Amy Bohutinsky. Others, like Aspect Ventures co-founder Theresia Gouw, looked internally. She said her own perfectionism is her nemesis. More tangibly, Gregg Renfrew, the founder and CEO of Beautycounter, said she counts toxic chemicals as hers.
“I think if we could do away with one thing, it’s the chemicals and the companies that create the chemicals that are causing so much harm to the earth and to all of our bodies,” Renfrew said.
Last, and perhaps most predictably, both Jotaka Eaddy, VP of Policy at LendUp, and Kathy Murphy, president of Personal Investing at Fidelity, called sleep—and particularly the lack-thereof—their sworn enemy. It doesn’t get much more relatable than that.
Watch the video to see all 12 women share their professional nemesis, and check out the rest of Fortune‘s International Women’s Day Superwomen series here.