3 Ways Women Entrepreneurs Can Succeed Despite Systemic Inequities

Less than 4 percent of US venture capital funding is granted to women entrepreneurs. This is shocking considering that 44% of US entrepreneurs are women. Investing in women entrepreneurs plays a role in achieving work-place equality and ending discrimination based on sex, but it is not nearly enough, according to Elizabeth (Liz) Elting, a mover and shaker in this field

TransPerfect was a New York City-based translation and language services company that Liz cofounded in 1992. Liz has sold it in 2018. TransPerfect serves a variety of fields of work, from movies and gaming to healthcare. While Liz’s career boomed and she experienced great success, she also encountered sexism and discrimination throughout her career from clients, bankers, lawyers, and within the organization that she herself created.

These experiences drove Liz to create the Elizabeth Elting Foundation, and devote herself to dissembling the systemic barriers that hold back women and marginalized populations. The foundation is a platform for women to come together, work optimistically towards economic, political, and social equality, as well as advancing minorities and minority rights. Her foundation shows Liz’s feminist progressive values and the work that she does in promoting public health and closing the wage gap. She believes that all women must support and collaborate with each other to attain equality and achieve success.

In a recent interview, Liz gave me three key points of advice to women entrepreneurs:

  1. Network, network and network

Liz has a specific take on networking: either start one within your organization or create or join one elsewhere. You can also share success stories and discuss your challenges with other members of the group. This will allow you to meet new friends and potential clients, as well as help you find others who are going through the same challenges you do. Liz recognizes the difficulties that introverts face when networking. She recommends to bring along a “wingman” to help make it easier.

  1. Find mentors to help you succeed

How can you overcome your fears and follow your dream mentor? You can find something you have in common, like the fact that your children go to the same school, are the same age and share the same interests. You can send them articles or congratulations on recent publications or features. Next, arrange to meet in person. Bonus tip: Mentorcam is not a bad place to start.

  1. Determine, embrace, and live your personal core values

If you are unsure, make a list! Your business should reflect your core values. Your reputation and ability to attract like-minded people will be reflected in your business. Liz is a firm believer in integrity, honesty, cooperation, financial responsibility and diversity. Your authentic self will shine through and you’ll be known as someone who lives by the values you hold dear. Your energy and personality will be reflected in the people around you. Magnetic people will gravitate to you and want to spend time with them.

This is especially important for marginalized women or groups that have it against them.

All that Liz does, surrounds her with optimism and not despair. It is not easy to eliminate the discrimination faced by women and minorities in nearly every aspect of our lives. People like Liz take the first steps to move the ball forward. We are all changing history together, and that’s something to celebrate.

Inc.com columnsists’ opinions are not the views of Inc.com.

Publiated at Wed 11 August 2021, 06:38:01 +0000

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