Instead of reciting ‘The Future is Female’ while wearing a phenomenal woman t-shirt, perhaps we should say that the time for females is now. Numbers don’t lie especially since nearly 50% of the world’s population is female. According to statistics from the National Association of Women Business Owners, there are now 9.4 million firms owned by women in the U.S, employing 7.1 million people and generating almost $1.5 billion in sales.
Every day, women are redefining their roles as entrepreneurs, founders, wives, mothers, employees, and bossed up human beings. Whether you turn on the TV, visit a favorite online platform, or run to Target, you will find stories featuring those who successfully built their business and personal brands while inspiring generations to come.
Thanks to Oprah Winfrey and Sarah Blakely, we know what a self-made Billionaire looks like from humble roots. Class Pass founder Payal Kadakia and media maven Lala Anthony prove that it’s possible to transform from an employee to founder and boss of multiple enterprises in health, beauty, and entertainment. Tyra Banks helps us embrace our curves on the road to success, while modeling intellectual brilliance that expands empires and careers for others. Chrissy Teigen and Ayesha Curry prove that one can juggle being happily married to superstars while having babies and cooking up empires, complete with cook books and product licensing deals. Kylie Jenner gives space for millennial women to make their mark with social media, outsourcing product development, and building wealth that many envy.
These women have colored outside of the lines, reconfigured the notion of a box, and created lives that fit them instead of societal norms. What was secret sauce to this level of achievement? Developing a strong brand and selling the heck out of it! Whether the personal brand came before the business or after as a result of building a successful business brand, these women were in the business of people and solved problems. Their ability to build relationships, connect with followers, and consistently grow sales demonstrate that women owned businesses are just as successful as men owned businesses.
Recently, I was able to humanize this notion of success as a guest lecturer for a Harvard Global Sales Class . In spite of challenges to raise VC funds and dismiss discrimination while growing my business brands, sales and connections are what helped me overcome those initial hurdles. I had to focus on selling to the right customer, keep them happy, repeat sales, and acquire referrals.
Numbers matter. Whether we measure business starts, revenue growth, job creation, number of years in business, or our connected community, numbers are key to our growth and success. The F Project is a powerful force of change for our collective empowerment. Join us as we get our numbers up, raise our voices with stats to match, and collectively empower female founders around the world. There’s room for you and the time is now.