Saturday, December 03, 2022

Women Shining a Light On the Most Urgent Issues of Our Time

At the end of every year, the Financial Times (FT) Weekend Magazine dedicates a special issue to celebrating the women from around the world who, over the past year, have stood out in their fields and sparked positive change. 

The 2022 list is now available, with 25 women disrupters profiled by a host of female writers including FT editors, actors, sportswomen, novelists, politicians and entrepreneurs. 

But Women of 2022 would not be complete without a crucial list — the one compiled by the FT’s loyal readers.  Here it is.

Saturday, November 26, 2022

Hey Women Entrepreneurs, You've Got This!

Whether you’re thinking about starting a business of your own, or you just need a little extra inspiration in your professional life, this roundup of the best business advice for women should do the trick!

And if you are thinking about taking your business global, don't forget to visit Women Entrepreneurs Grow Global®.

Saturday, November 19, 2022

Let's Put Women's Entrepreneurship Into Overdrive

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) recently launched the Women’s Entrepreneurship (WE) initiative to “inspire women and tap their potential to meaningfully increase equity, job creation, and economic prosperity.” The initiative is a collaborative effort with the United States Department of Commerce. 

WE will focus on connecting women with each other, support networks, and funding sources. Additionally, the USPTO launched a new online hub that provides important information to aspiring women entrepreneurs. The website includes information on how to secure intellectual property rights and secure funding.

Let's put women's entrepreneurship into overdrive.  Go for it!

Saturday, November 12, 2022

Crack the Code, Find Your People, Build Your Confidence, and Discover Success

Running your own business can be unpredictable and stressful. By utilizing these tips and always remembering that everyone's path is different, women business owners can alleviate some of the stress of entrepreneurship and find balance while also managing a financially successful business.

Saturday, November 05, 2022

5 Ways to Create More Equity for Women

The gender gap at companies may be narrowing, but there’s still a lot of daylight. Now, there is data to back up what most women (and many men) know at an anecdotal level.

An analysis of employee survey data shows that at many companies, women have less autonomy and control than men. Here are five ways to create more equity.

Saturday, October 29, 2022

Develop a Mindset Driven By Curiosity to Explore the World in Different Ways

Babson Professor Heidi Neck’s new 2022 course is Ideate, based in part on her 2020 book, The IDEATE Method: Identifying High-Potential Entrepreneurial Ideas. She describes the class as a mixture of creativity, idea generation, and the entrepreneurial mindset. The output of the course is 100 high-potential entrepreneurial ideas per student.

It’s not about a deep vetting of those ideas,” she added. It’s also not about feasibility analysis, minimum viable product, and design thinking. That’s for Babson’s other courses to explore. “This class is about developing a mindset driven by curiosity to explore the world in different ways. And, from that, using creativity to take what they learned in that exploration to create new ideas, and then building courage to share those ideas and take action under conditions of uncertainty.”

Neck has built a successful and influential career on identifying ideas, taking action, and teaching entrepreneurially.  She has done such a good job for 21 years at Babson that she has been recognized as one of the very best entrepreneurship educators.

Learn more about Neck, her class and what's so special about it.

Saturday, October 22, 2022

Women Entrepreneurs Pursue Success Despite Unique Challenges

Despite unique challenges – global pandemic, gender issues, and lack of capital, for example –  many women are passionate about realizing their dream of starting a business, and results of a new AARP survey show the COVID-19 pandemic did not stop them.

The results revealed that “want” rather than “need” most often motivated women’s decisions to become entrepreneurs. 

AARP research reflects a need for additional support and training for women entrepreneurs to grow their business. Respondents said they were looking for resources on marketing (24%), recruiting and hiring staff (11%), and financing (10%), and these areas were where women were most likely to have sought out training.

Saturday, October 15, 2022

How We Can Turn the Tide To Create Gender Parity in Entrepreneurship

Countless studies have shown the many benefits that women entrepreneurs bring to the table. 

In the UK alone, for example, up to £250 billion of new value could be added to the economy if women launched and scaled new businesses at the same rate as British men, generating jobs and unlocking new opportunities for many.

Women should be at the forefront of the entrepreneurial scene. The flexibility that comes with self-employment – the autonomy to choose how and which work and family roles to prioritize– makes being your own boss an attractive proposition for many women.

Despite entrepreneurial opportunity being present all over the world, not everyone has the same access to resources or the right support system to take an idea forward. The reality is, women feel this impact more than men.

How do you turn the tide to create gender parity in entrepreneurship?  To turn the tide for female entrepreneurs, women need to have access to the right resources (for instance, capital) and receive the right support right from the outset. And this can only be achieved through public and private sector collaboration.

Read the entire article here.

Saturday, October 08, 2022

It's Time For Meaningful Change For Women Entrepreneurs

Women should be empowered to nurture their entrepreneurial aspirations within the traditional corporate structure.  How do you do this?  

Consider women's entrepreneurial interests and provide purposeful support – even if that's outside your organization. This could take the form of providing grants or time off for side hustles, more flexible work schedules to foster autonomy or a shift to deliverable-oriented performance structures.

Supporting women, particularly women of color, at all levels of your organization helps to ensure that you're not wasting the talent you've invested in.

Read on to learn how to inspire and support women entrepreneurs.

Saturday, October 01, 2022

Women and Entrepreneurs of Color Are Flocking to Entrepreneurship

What's the biggest rival for businesses?  Self-employed individuals, better known as entrepreneurs.  They are creating jobs and economic opportunity.

According to recent research by Gusto in its New Business Owner Survey, 36% of entrepreneurs said they started their business after voluntarily quitting their job. 

One of the key trends from the survey is that women and entrepreneurs of color are flocking to entrepreneurship.  

Founders of new businesses were much likely to be Black, Hispanic, and female in 2020 and 2021 than in 2019. In 2019, 28% of new business owners were women, versus 49% in 2021. And in 2019, Black or African American entrepreneurs made up less than 3% of entrepreneurs; by 2021 that share had tripled to 9%.

New business creation is making a comeback.  Why not control your destiny?

Saturday, September 24, 2022

Women Business Owners Are Making History, Always

Women-owned businesses are essential to economic stability and recovery and supporting them is a smart economic decision.

Women are making history as the primary breadwinners for their families while also leading about 40% of households. With these factors combined, supporting small businesses owned by women from all socioeconomic groups means supporting companies that contribute to local economies and provide good jobs.

Read on to learn how continuing to empower women-owned businesses will strengthen our global economy.

Saturday, September 17, 2022

How HER Side Hustle Makes $15,000 a Month

TikToker, Yamie Michelin, broke down how she's been able to make $15,000 a month by selling merchandise from discount retailer Marshalls on Amazon for a much higher price.

Michelin, who goes by @yamie_the_realtor on TikTok with no less than 41.5K followers and 820.8K Likes, first said she searches for products at discount stores. In one example, she purchased two primers from Sephora that she found at Marshalls for $3.99 and resold the items for $22.54 each.

Some sellers have even seemed to crack a code by outsourcing products from wholesale companies or discount retailers where they can buy bulk products cheaper and then resell them for a higher price, turning a profit without minimum effort.

Is it ethical?  

Is it ethical or fair when 7-Eleven charges $1.39 for a can of Campbell's Chicken Noodle soup and the Dollar Store charges 99 cents?

Read on to learn how Yamie's side hustle passively makes $15,000 each month.  

Tuesday, September 13, 2022

Chicago-based Bluedog is a Top 100 Finalist Again for Crain's Top Places to Work 2022

How do you strengthen your company to be a best place to work? Chicago-based Bluedog's CEO Michelle Hayward has the answer. For the fifth consecutive year Bluedog, a certified B Corp, has been recognized by Crain's Chicago Business as a Top Place to Work.  Bluedog claimed the No. 1 position in 2021.

“Being among the Top 100 Places to Work during the ongoing pandemic feels particularly meaningful,” said Michelle Hayward, Bluedog’s CEO. “From the start, we built a supportive culture, and the last two years proved the trust-building ways of working and mutuality we developed. We all grew and evolved around this moment together.”

About Bluedog

Bluedog Design is a dynamic marketing and growth consultancy founded in 1999. Globally recognized as a leading innovation partner, Bluedog helps large, complex organizations (many of them household names) find the clarity to make strategic decisions that land in growth. Since 2020, the company has also been a Certified B Corporation, accountable for advancing sustainability, transparency and ethics to make business a force for good in the world.

Read more:  Bluedog Is A Crain’s Chicago Finalist For Top Place To Work – Again

Saturday, September 10, 2022

Knowledge, Networks and Access: Academy for Women Entrepreneurs (AWE)

Have you ever had this happen and reacted similarly?

“When they called to tell me about my acceptance, the first thing I said was ‘I think you have the wrong person,’” she [Cathy Perugachi, co-founder of e-commerce business, Quipu Pallay] recounts. 

Academy for Women Entrepreneurs alumna Cathy Perugachi is an Ecuadorian fashionista who is helping women redefine their self-image from the inside out.

Perugachi says that participating in a U.S. Embassy-led initiative like AWE is prestigious thanks to its proximity to the U.S. business community. "It is not just any type of network, it gives you a golden pass to boost not only your business but also your professional growth,” she says. “It gives you a sense of name recognition and legitimacy.” 

The Academy for Women Entrepreneurs (AWE), a program of the U.S. Department of State, gives women the knowledge, networks, and access they need to launch and scale successful businesses.

Learn more at:  A Bridge Between: Creating Opportunities for Women Entrepreneurs

Saturday, September 03, 2022

Lead With Compassion

Compassion, the cornerstone of diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI), isn’t always afforded to women entrepreneurs, who often face barriers to progress in the workplace — and in other aspects of society. 

Women entrepreneurs perhaps know better than most how essential compassion in the workplace truly is. Cultivating a compassionate environment not only helps women entrepreneurs manage their own businesses and personal life with more balance and ease but also fosters an environment of diversity that helps other women and under-represented groups succeed.

Discover 4 types of compassion women entrepreneurs can cultivate to navigate trying times in business and in life.

Saturday, August 27, 2022

Black Women Entrepreneurs Give Their Best Startup Advice

These badass business owners featured in the article below are changing the game from skincare, to life coaching, to mental health-conscious apparel.

When Black women are still making 63 cents for every dollar a white man makes, it’s imperative that we support each other – whether that’s through a purchase, a referral, an Instagram follow, or a retweet. When one of us comes up, we all come up!

Here, five entrepreneurs are asked about their mission, and what it means to them to be a Black woman entrepreneur.  They also share  advice for the next class of melanated moguls.

Saturday, August 20, 2022

More Working Moms Push to Work For Themselves

As COVID upended domestic life, women's rate of self-employment rose faster than the share of men in the sector.

According to Crain's Chicago Business, the share of women who work for themselves has been trending upwards for the last decade, and experts say the pandemic accelerated the shift for working parents who were disproportionately shouldering child care and home responsibilities. The percentage of women who reported being self-employed rose faster during the pandemic than the rate for men.

“In the absence of a really supportive private sector for work-family balance, I think women are finally realizing that self-employment is that alternative,” says Milli, who founded Research 2 Impact, a consulting firm specializing in economic and social policy issues disproportionately impacting women and people of color.

Read on to learn how more working moms, to find balance amid a pandemic, are pushing to work for themselves.  It's an escape from the regular 9-5 job and allowing women to control their destiny.

Saturday, August 13, 2022

Navigating Gender-Based Obstacles

Women face significant challenges in obtaining venture funding but what happens once they've moved into the growth phase? Research reveals women entrepreneurs run into gender-based impediments but develop successful strategies to overcome them.

To better understand those obstacles, a research project was launched by Babson’s Center for Women’s Entrepreneurial Leadership (CWEL) and Bank of America Private Bank. Ultimately, findings revealed that women who have built successful companies had to navigate significant gender-based obstacles. In doing so, these women created alternate paths to success for themselves, and for other determined female entrepreneurs.

Read on to discover the three key themes that emerge relating to the challenges women entrepreneurs faced when growing their businesses.  Be sure to review the Executive Summary.

Saturday, August 06, 2022

Dynamic Black Female Entrepreneurs Operating in the Skincare Industry

The 2022 ESSENCE Festival of Culture saw skincare giant Aveeno partner with ESSENCE to present the Aveeno SkinHealth Startup Accelerator Showcase Winner’s Circle on the Beauty Carnival stage. 

The grand-prize winner received $100,000 in funding for her business, while the runner-up received $50,000 in funding for her business. 

Read a little about both winners and their brands here.

Saturday, July 23, 2022

How the Mighty Succeed!

Some articles I've written are worth re-sharing.  This is one of them, Global Small Business:  How the Mighty Succeed (Despite Harsh Economic Times).  Perfect fit to our current times.  It goes like this.

Remember when you were a teeny, tiny business — a one-man or one-woman shop — where you wore every hat imaginable to get a job done? You would proudly announce, “There is no job I won’t do to grow my business!” Fast-forward to where you are now and where you would like to be in the future. That’s what this article is all about. As a successful SMB, you’re already “faster than a speeding bullet …,” energetic, enthusiastic, adaptable, flexible, accessible, decisive, nimble, innovative, responsive — in other words, pretty mighty already. 

But, all things considered, are you strong enough to continue driving your business results to the next level?

Saturday, July 16, 2022

Real Emotional Intelligence Matters

I've often felt that real emotional intelligence is about 'caring' and that all humans have that trait within them – sometimes you just have to pull it out or discover it.

One method I have used over the years on connecting with caring people is this.  When I share scary news with someone I know by email (this is the equivalent of being vulnerable), for example, I not only see how fast they respond, but how they respond.  No response at all, well, that's real emotional immaturity.  A response that ignores the elephant on the table and barely goes there is emotional shallowness.  But I must say that it works every time.  The more I have dealings with the person who didn't respond or didn't go there, the more I realize they don't have real emotional intelligence or a caring nature.  Not someone I would want on my team.

Obviously no one wants to drop bad news on anyone, especially people you don't know well, but you can use this same technique by sharing any information that requires someone to think deeply and think through what you have just shared.  How do they respond?  

In this article, Marcel Schwantes provides 4 clues to help you identify someone with real emotional intelligence.  Working with a team that possesses these traits will lead to immense success. 

Saturday, July 09, 2022

We Are Seeing a Promising Trend Upwards in Female Entrepreneurship

The world is full of extraordinary women in a variety of leadership positions all across the globe, and yet seemingly, they are not taken as seriously as men in the world of business.

We are now seeing a promising trend upwards in female entrepreneurship, a level playing field for both men and women in entrepreneurship. In this article, Nathan Ortega sits down with the Founders of J’adore Les fleurs to learn how women bring a competitive edge to business as they lead the way for female entrepreneurs everywhere.  

Saturday, July 02, 2022

Escape From Corporate America Blog Celebrates Its 18th Anniversary!

©2022 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.
Eighteen (18) years ago today – July 2, 2004 – I [Laurel J. Delaney] started this blog, Escape From Corporate America.

Thank you for your engagement and readership all these years. We have more than 20,000 visitors a month who want to know more about breaking away from Corporate America and starting a business.  I look forward to many more years together.

Saturday, June 18, 2022

Women Entrepreneurs At Their Best

Some of these women entrepreneurs are driven by a passion for their idea and moral imperatives rather than pure profit, and they keep their community, economy, and environment in mind.

In this article, you'll find women entrepreneurs who encourage more cultural and systemic changes to support other women entrepreneurs.  One gives a voice and platform to those with disabilities, another sells gluten-free, vegan, non-GMO cookies free of the top allergens, and still another makes fragrant and colorful hand-crafted soaps with whimsical names like unicorn frappuccino and pineapple flamingo.  And there are more.

Variety is the spice of life.  These women entrepreneurs know how to spice it up, go after their passion in life, and make a business out of it.  Resilience.  Tenacity.  Impact.  Women entrepreneurs at their best.

Saturday, June 11, 2022

Accept Personal Responsibility

Daniel Mangena says that unless you accept full, personal responsibility for everything in your life; you're giving away your power to change it. This is where so many people go wrong when they set out to change their lives.

They sign up for a course. They change their hair color. Maybe they take up a hobby or start jogging. At some point though, the train runs into the buffers. Reality kicks in, and something goes "wrong."

So, what do you do?  Find out.

Saturday, June 04, 2022

Impactful Women Entrepreneurs Should Apply: Cartier Women's Initiative

The Cartier Women’s Initiative launches applications for its 2023 edition with sustainability at the forefront may apply to receive support for their business growth.

Applications opened May 16, 2022 and remain so until June 30.

Learn more and apply.

Saturday, May 28, 2022

Therapeutic Work: Helping Horses and People

Rainhorse Founder and Executive Director Maria Eastman has always had a passion for horses. She has been around horses all of her life and used to show, train and rehabilitate ex-race horses.

The mission of Rainhorse is to offer equine-assisted activities and therapies and bring the remarkable healing help of horses to people from all walks of life. Rainhorse offers equine-assisted counseling and equine-assisted learning. 

“Horses and humans are both creatures who live in communities, and we are both very sensitive to the emotional states of others in our community,” Ms. Eastman concludes. “Although, we humans often lose some of this sensitivity. At Rainhorse, clients can work to regain some of this lost connection.” 

In the aftermath of the Texas tragedy, this sounds like something many can use.

Saturday, May 21, 2022

Healthy Homegrown Company Culture: 16 Ideas

Below, experts from Fast Company Executive Board share 16 practical ideas that continue to foster inclusiveness and team building at work.

Hat tip to Michelle Hayward, CEO, Bluedog for turning us on to this fantastic piece in Fast Company: "16 ideas to lead to a healthier homegrown company culture.  Her contribution is #1 (usual for her in many respects). 

Saturday, May 14, 2022

Build Relationships With People You Can Help and With People Who Can Help You

This is not networking because networking is merely the process of exchanging information and developing professional contacts. Relationship building is different.  

Build the relationships – and go deep – before you need to ask for help.  By the time you need to make the ask, you have already established trust, reliability and familiarity — all the things needed to ask and receive. 

Saturday, May 07, 2022

Celebrate Your Achievements With Other Women

When you travel alone it can be scary and liberating at the same time. It pushes you out of your comfort zone.

Here are some takeaways for female business leaders and entrepreneurs from one woman who recently returned from a business trip.

Saturday, April 30, 2022

Entrepreneurial Obsession by Laurel J. Delaney

Enjoy a free download of my ebook, "Entrepreneurial Obsession: 13 ways to create a brighter future for your business" – one of the most important books you'll ever read. Discover how to do something different now in order to build a successful business. Learn how to weather economic storms, live loud, and sleep like a baby during tough times.

Saturday, April 23, 2022

Why It Is Necessary to Support Women Entrepreneurs Around the World

The question that all forward-looking entrepreneurs should be asking themselves as the global economy continues to develop and diversify is: what can be done to support women entrepreneurs around the world? 

According to this article, women face three specific obstacles: funding, mentorship, and experience.

By supporting programs that help women learn about the world of entrepreneurship, such as Women Entrepreneurs Grow Global's offerings, women can build strong borderless businesses faster, solidify their position in the global economy, and stay competitive in the world marketplace.

Saturday, April 16, 2022

Amsterdam-Based Women Entrepreneurs Are a Force to Reckon With

Women across the globe are starting businesses in record numbers. They have busted borders, broken through stereotypes and are bringing about progressive changes in the business ecosystem.

According to data released late last year (2021) by the Dutch chamber of commerce – KVK, the number of female entrepreneurs in the Netherlands increased by 29 per cent in the past five years.

However, women are still facing challenges on their way to entrepreneurship, but their hunger for success has made them cross all roadblocks and lead their businesses.

Here are 9 Amsterdam-based female founders that are running their startups solo. 

Saturday, April 09, 2022

What Are Your Rules of Thumb?

Alan Webber is the founder of the technology business magazine Fast Company and has gone on to become Mayor of the City of Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Many years ago I interviewed him after he wrote, “Rules of Thumb:  52 Truths For Winning At Business Without Losing Your Self."

I still love this book for all the rich insights that are straightforward and moving.  Alan was always so ahead of his time and continues to be.

Some of the answers he gave during our interview are more than ever relevant to our times.

For example, when I asked him what the gist of "Rules of Thumb" was about:

I suppose the gist of it is that we all need to pay attention to the new rules of work and life; that the world is changing and we are all responsible for how it changes — and to guide our own lives, our companies, our families, and our communities in a direction that makes sense, that works, that has positive results, and that is sustainable.

Perfect response.  But that's so Alan.  Read the entire interview here.

Saturday, April 02, 2022

Entrepreneurs Always Spot Opportunity, Especially In Times of Disruption

The COVID-19 pandemic, in particular, has presented both dramatic disruption and unique opportunities. In fact, more American entrepreneurs report seeing increasingly more business opportunities despite the economic challenges of the pandemic, according to research from the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM).

Read on to examine entrepreneurship – positive perceptions of starting a business and a world still rich with opportunities.

Saturday, March 26, 2022

The Power of Entrepreneurship, Importance of a Supportive Network and the Real Value of Education

Shakenna Williams '94, Babson College, learned the power of entrepreneurship.  She learned the importance of a supportive network.  She learned the real value of education.

Her parents owned a large beauty supply distribution company, supplying all of the Northeast, and as Williams and her brother grew up in Springfield, Massachusetts, they spent every summer working in the business.

The lessons of her father and the experiences that followed now impact her work as the founder of Babson’s Black Women’s Entrepreneurial Leadership (BWEL) program and as the executive director of the Center for Women’s Entrepreneurial Leadership (CWEL) at Babson College.

Read on to discover more.  To uplift your spirits.  To get inspired.

Saturday, March 19, 2022

Did These 18 Women Change the World?

Who are the most successful female entrepreneurs in America? There are too many to list, but these 18 businesswoman were chosen by Small Business Trends because they forged their own entrepreneurial journey.

From an executive chairman to world-famous recording artists, these female entrepreneurs continue to make waves throughout the business world.

The question becomes:  Did these women change or revolutionize the world with ground-breaking innovations?

Saturday, March 12, 2022

Find Ways to Support and Encourage Other Women Entrepreneurs

Here are 3 questions to ask yourself that the author [Tanya Dalton for Entrepreneur] hopes will prompt you to be part of the solution of helping more women entrepreneurs grow their businesses.

Answering the 3 questions allows you to find ways to support and encourage other women business owners so we can all collectively grow.

What will you do today to support another female entrepreneur?

Saturday, March 05, 2022

Women Entrepreneurs Are On the Rise

International Women's Day (IWD), coming up on Tuesday, March 8, 2022, has been a time to recognize achievements made by women and to recommit to the fight for equality — socially, politically, and economically. 

There have been slow and steady gains in the workplace. But during the pandemic, it appears to be accelerating a generational mind shift for women.  Greater work-life flexibility and personal control of their career has become the No. 1 issue for today’s working women.

Here's what that means:  Out with Corporate America and in with entrepreneurship, which allows us to do what we love, generate revenue, care for and spend time with our families, and contribute to the health and well-being of our communities.

Read on about the wave of women entrepreneurs arising during the pandemic.

Saturday, February 26, 2022

Ensuring Productivity Is the Key to Going Forward

Theo Paphitis, Chairman at Theo Paphitis Retail Group and Dragon from BBC's Dragons' Den, writes "Things I have Learnt in 2020," and little did he know at the time that the worst was not over yet on the global pandemic.  Still, his insights apply even more to our current times.  Paphitis emphasizes that ensuring productivity is the key to going forward – no matter where anyone is located or how the work gets done.

Another futuristic thought leader is Michelle Hayward, founder and CEO, Bluedog. In her article, "Let's not go back!," she talks about how now is the time for people to propel themselves into futures they've been too tired and stressed to imagine.  "Let's hold space for the possibility of a new future by limiting language that speaks to the prospect of reliving the past," she says.

Two entirely different thought leaders from different parts of the world yet they meet at the same point:  We can't go back and we must create a new future.

Saturday, February 19, 2022

Be Interesting But Not Complicated

"My father was not a complicated man.” ~ Diane Disney Miller (daughter of Walt Disney)

Innovation is such a personal, creative endeavor, but the influence of others plays a big role in helping us succeed. 

Here I share insights from some of those who’ve inspired me when it comes to developing innovative practices in my business. Perhaps they will have the same effect on you.  At the end of each passage, there’s a lesson learned along with a big question to get a conversation going. 

If nothing else, this article will encourage you to take time out to reflect and work a little magic on the innovation front.

Saturday, February 12, 2022

The Power of Networking to Build Confidence, Create Connections and Accelerate Opportunities

To understand what helps female entrepreneurs thrive at a higher level, Forbes contributor Kathy Caprino interviews Pat Hedley, investor, advisor and author of Meet 100 People: A How-To Guide to the Career and Life Edge Everyone’s Missing. After a nearly 30-year career with global growth investor General Atlantic, Hedley is now a private investor and advisor to growth companies and a passionate advocate for intentional and generous relationship building. 

Here's what she had to say, oh, and one quick snippet from when Pat was asked why networking is so important for entrepreneurs generally, but especially for female entrepreneurs.

Networking is essential for entrepreneurs because founders are highly reliant on accessing resources and information they don’t already have to start and build a business. Even if one has a great idea, executing on that idea requires an extensive network of individuals including employees, customers/clients, investors, advisors and influencers.

Read on for the full interview.

Saturday, February 05, 2022

Saturday, January 29, 2022

Women Entrepreneurs Tackle BIG Ideas

Female entrepreneurs are still receiving little capital.  Wired reports:

“Startups with a woman founder raised $25 billion in the first half of 2021—more than the total amount raised by women any full year prior.”

While the incremental changes are noticeable, we aren’t close to where we need to be.

After years of witnessing these founders' struggles and limited access to capital, Dr. Silvia Mah, partner at Ad Astra Ventures, who helps women founders grow innovative startups tackling big ideas, is determined that there are certain things the VC industry can do to level the playing field.

Here are three

Saturday, January 22, 2022

Helping Black Women Entrepreneurs Start and Expand a Business

A growing number of firms have opened their treasure chests to Black woman entrepreneurs. They, in turn, are often using the financing to help other Black women start or expand a business.

The median seed funding raised by a Black woman founder is $125,000, nowhere near the national median of $2.5 million in 2020, according to ProjectDiane. In the first half of 2021, Crunchbase data revealed that only 0.34% of capital went to businesses run by Black women.

The article for Black Enterprise Magazine goes on to say that more efforts are surfacing to provide funding to Black women, or people of color in general, such as the Goldman Sachs’ One Million Black Women initiative, Fortune reported. One firm that is seeing the capital flowing steadily is the Fearless Fund, which works to increase Black representation in venture capital and support women of color.

Saturday, January 15, 2022

Learn to Love Uncertainty

What’s keeping you up at night?  That's a key question to ask a business owner or top level executive if you want to find out what's really going on with them.

Being a small business owner myself and a formally trained facilitator, I decided to take a different approach and asked 20 presidents of small businesses in marketing, interior design, insurance and a variety of other industries what’s allowing them to get a good night’s rest.

Here are the highlights of what they shared, one being "Learn to not just live with but love uncertainty."

How a Business Owner Can Sleep Like a Baby During Tough Times, by Laurel J. Delaney for American Express.

Saturday, January 08, 2022

Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) Provide Affordable Financing to Women

Congress created Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) in 1994 to provide affordable financing to women, minority, and other underestimated entrepreneurs.

CDFIs hope, through financing, is to help women entrepreneurs rebound faster and grow stronger, healthier businesses despite the pandemic.

CDFIs are mission, not profit-driven. They have lower requirements regarding years in business, credit score (or no credit score), and collateral. Entrepreneurs still have to prove that they're creditworthy, but CDFIs work with entrepreneurs whom banks typically turn away. CDFIs have proven that financing women- and minority-business owners are NOT risky.

Think of them as first responders for women entrepreneurs.  How will you use a CDFI loan to become a healthier, stronger business in 2022?

Source:  Our esteemed colleague and friend, Geri Stengel, who contributes to Forbes on a regular basis.  She is a big supporter of women business owners.

Saturday, January 01, 2022

Begin Again

©2022 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.
"No matter how hard the past, you can always begin again." – Buddha