12 Gems from Women who have Done it: Grow a Business

As a female entrepreneur with a business that helps entrepreneurs, I was very excited that a conference on Women investing in Women took place, and that I could host a Women Entrepreneur Track entitled:

How can [Women] be smarter & faster?

I had recently watched Sheryl Sandberg’s comments in a TED talk on why we have too few women leaders. I think she would have been impressed with the wisdom from the stage and the audience. The icing on the cake was the ‘Rock Star Pitch” by Candace Klein of Bad Girl Ventures and SoMoLend.  Candace’s record: 29 pitch competitions and 29 victories. 

Top twelve take-aways to accelerate growth

These are the take-aways (with special shout out to Sheryl Sandberg’s TED talk comments).1

12. WISE: Cultivate happiness at work.

11. Follow your dream to bring you access to capital.

10. Doing the right thing should not cost us more.

9.   Investor Relations are a pain in the ass. Bootstrap and have your own company fund the business.

8.  Vote with your purses. Do not support companies that do not put women on boards.

7. Panel: Keep a journal & mentor; don’t give up; it’s a marathon not a sprint.

6. WISE: Say yes and open doors.

5.  Ask for a business card, not credit card; leverage relationships;  people strapping is the way to go instead of capital

4.  Sit at the table; make your partner at home a real partner; and don’t leave before you leave. 

3. : Getting Board Ready requires: know & accomplish something; have connections; make sure your knowledge, skills, and connections are widely known; and cultivate advocates.

2.  Be prepared; do your homework; and know your business better than anyone else.  Know your investor & what they care about. 

1. WISE: What you seek is seeking you.

The 85 Broads & Women Investing in Women (WIIW) Inaugural Summit took place at the Biltmore Hotel in Phoenix, AZ on 12th December 2012.

Highlights from the mid-day sessions included Women on Boards 2020 Keynote Dr. Mary Walshok, Global CONNECT/ UCSD; Branding your Brilliance – TED talk participants Robin McKay and Arizona State student Kayla Burkholder; and Women & Access to Capital’s Lauren Abele, COO of Pipeline Fellowship.

A theme of disclosing one’s age started with Dr. Walshok’s talk; no one could believe she was seventy!  Several others’ disclosed that they had hit the fifty and sixty year old marks but the wisdom came from one who was barely twenty, the WISE student speaker Kayla Burkholder. 

The afternoon track included The Lean Launchpad Way by Sidnee Peck, Arizona State University and Sharing our Secrets panel moderator Jesse Draper, Valley Girl Show with consummate Phoenix mentor and startup maven Francine Hardaway, Stealthmode Partners; Courtney Klein, SEED SPOT co-founder and an accomplished young Phoenix entrepreneur with another amazing CEO, nurse turned founder Breanna Bolley, CODE Technology. 

This article was written by Mary Juetten, founder of www.traklight.com a site that provides inventors, creators, startups and small businesses with the tools to identify intellectual property and protect their ideas. Mary is also the Co-President of 85 Broads Phoenix, a proud member of 85 Broads.com, and blogger for thenextwomen.com.

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