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Not everyone ignores women’s innovations. One trade group in the toy industry recognizes that women know what kids — and their parents — want. To encourage innovation, Women in Toys, Licensing & Entertainment (WIT) provides what entrepreneurs need: access to decision-makers and mentors to help them overcome obstacles.
When diverse perspectives are applied to financing, doors open for entrepreneurs. Last week, I wrote The Next Business Revolution: Diversity and how it fuels innovation and enhances employee engagement. This week, I look at how the diverse makeup of one company has created finance options for innovations that might otherwise never get to market … and why more companies are going to follow their lead.
Entrepreneurial women have been limited in their ability to bring their innovations to market because they are only able to raise about 50% of the capital that men raise.
Cities play a unique and critical role as the breeding grounds for entrepreneurs who start and grow innovative scalable companies that drive economic growth and create jobs, according to research by Richard Florida, Jane Jacobs and Paul Romer. The density of interactions among people, the diversity of people — women, minorities, LGBTQ and immigrants — as well as the tolerance — for new ideas, breaking established norms, ambiguity, pivots and even failure — stimulates and encourages breakthrough ideas.
With Father’s Day on Sunday, it seems an opportune time to once again thank the men who support female founders.
We all have fathers and, as it turns out, there’s a connection between being the father of a teenage daughter and being a VC willing to hire a female investing partner. This diversity, in turn, improves the financial performance of funds, according to reseach by Harvard University professor Paul Gompers and Ph.D. candidate Sophie Wang.
Seeking outside financing isn’t the only way to take your business to the next level. Depending on your business model, franchising may be the solution. Genevieve Custer Weeks started Tutu School nine years ago in San Francisco. She taught ballet to kids 8 months to 8 years old — a niche that was overlooked by most dance activities classes.
Nina Vaca started Pinnacle Group 21 years ago. She has grown it from a small IT company into a global workforce-solutions powerhouse. In 2015, Pinnacle was ranked the #1 American Express and Women Presidents’ Organization Fastest-Growing Women-Owned/Led Company. Revenue exceeded $1 billion dollars. Pinnacle was ranked #2 in 2016 and 2017.
The rise to the top is never a straight line. There are moments when you are not sure if that big, bold step you are taking will be the right one. For Nina, there were several such moments.
Whether you are asking for help during the busiest time of day or in the dead of night, you want someone who is always there for you. You want someone who will never complain if you ask a lot of questions and won’t judge you if your questions seem silly to him or her. That new pal for entrepreneurs is Alice.
In honor of Mother’s Day this Sunday, I’m revisiting a favorite topic — paid leave — and its importance to women entrepreneurs. (It’s important to everyone, too, but I write about female entrepreneurship.)
The jobless rate is at a 10-year low as hiring grows reports The New York Times. Competition for talent will toughen. So, to the one million plus women-owned firms, which employ more than eight million people, you’re going to have to compete to attract and retain top talent.