Geri Stengel

 
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Women Entrepreneurship

Women Entrepreneurs Fuel Social Change and Economic Growth

How do men and women differ in boosting the economy and changing the world?

Read all of Women Entrepreneurs Fuel Social Change and Economic Growth on Forbes.com.
 
 

Want to Grow Your Business? Then Listen!

Successful entrepreneurs know that they don’t know everything and that listening is a key skill for business growth.

Read all of Want to Grow Your Business? Then Listen! on Forbes.com. 
 

8 Tips For Crowdfunding Success

Whether you’re a startup or an existing business, a rewards-based crowdfunding campaign offers debt- and equity-free money to launch a product. That’s right! You don’t have to give up a piece of your company in exchange for money or pay interest on a loan.

Women are proving that they have the right stuff to be successful at rewards campaigns. I know this from first-hand experience and from women I’ve interviewed. I raised 71% more than my $7,500 campaign goal.

Women are organized, diligent, clear communicators, good storytellers and skilled marketers. The result: Women had a 70% success rate in reaching their Kickstarter goals vs. 61% for men. Further analysis showed that it was not women’s more modest financial goals that accounted for their higher rate of success, according to research conducted by Hebrew University, the Kauffman Foundation, and UC Berkeley.

I recently connected with Shelley Prevost of Torch, who exceeded her goal of raising $150,000 by 8%. Two thirds of parents want to limit or guide their children’s use of the internet, according to Alexandra Samuel, who researches the way we use the internet.Torch is a simple-to-use, smart router that allows parents to guide their children’s use of the internet.

So how do women do it?

Read all 8 Tips For Crowdfunding Success on Forbes.com.

Tech: An Opportunity For Black Women and Investors

Black women who start tech-based companies represent an unnoticed but potentially lucrative investment for funders.

Read all of Tech: An Opportunity For Black Women and Investors on Forbes.com

What Dating and Angel Investing Have In Common

Like any long-term relationship, the match between entrepreneur and investor takes work and communication.

Read all of What Dating and Angel Investing Have In Common on Forbes.com.

 

5 Ways to Grow Your Business With A Little Help from Your Friends

After interviewing women entrepreneurs for the past four years, one fact stands out: Successful ones don’t do it alone.  Support comes in many shapes and sizes and from many different sources. I was reminded of this when I reconnected with Diana Lovett of Cissé Trading Co. who takes advantage of several different kinds support. We originally spoke about raising money when you’re pregnant or a new mother.

Cissé produces cocoa baking mixes, hot cocoa and ready-to-eat treats. Lovett has grown the company from a small regional player that sold in speciality markets to a national company selling in traditional supermarkets. She’s expanded her product line from foods you make to include foods that are ready to eat. All products are absolutely scrumptious.

Lovett built her company using a wide range of support systems.

Read all of 5 Ways to Grow Your Business With A Little Help from Your Friends on Forbes.com. 

Why The Force Will Be With Women Entrepreneurs In 2016

What’s good for women is good for the economy.

Economists and academics agree women entrepreneurs are an under-tapped force that can rekindle economic expansion. Women are becoming more entrepreneurial. Women own 36% of all businesses, according to the 2012 U.S. Census ‒ a jump of 30% over 2007.

My 10 reasons the force will be with women entrepreneurs are a mix of marketplace trends, expanding financing options, and the growing recognition that support is needed and is effective. The biggest challenge women face when starting and growing their businesses is access to capital, especially equity financing, as I was reminded by Sharon Vosmek, an economist and CEO of Astia ‒ a nonprofit that identifies and propels high-potential women-led companies with expertise and money. Female entrepreneurs start companies with 50% less capital than male entrepreneurs, according to Access to Capital by High-Growth Women-Owned Businesses, research commissioned by the National Women’s Business Council (NWBC). So no surprise, money is a large focus of the article. I’ve also included resources in case you want to go deeper into a topic.  

Read all of Why The Force Will Be With Women Entrepreneurs In 2016 on Forbes.com

Photo credit: © Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Rights Reserved.

Diverse Angels Breed Innovative Companies

Innovation doesn’t just happen. It is the result of making unexpected connections based on things we already know. This is as true for investors as it is for entrepreneurs. Investors are more likely to invest in things they understand first hand.

Natalia Oberti Noguera understood that the way to increase the number of successful innovative companies was to increase the number of women angels funding them. These investors recognize investment opportunities that white guys don’t. That’s one of reasons she started Pipeline Angels in 2011. Back then, only 12% of angel investors were women and 13% of all angel-backed companies women-led, according to the Center for Venture Research, which tracks angel investments. The percentage of women angels has more than doubled to 26% and so has the percentage of angel-backed companies that are women-led — 28%.

To read all of Diverse Angels Breed Innovative Companies go to Forbes.com.

Cross Cultural Opportunity Leads To Business Growth

To create a long-lasting bridge between Jordan and America, 20 women from both countries attended a week-long cultural and entrepreneurial training. They learned from each other and built relationships.

The program is a partnership among Open Hands Initiative, which creates programs that build mutual understanding, open communication, trust and goodwill between people in the United States and emerging countries; the Women First Enterprise, which helps women become successful entrepreneurs and investors; and Oasis500, a leading early stage and seed investment and business accelerator based in Amman. The culmination of the week-long program was a Demo Day and Pitch Competition. Companies competed for $100,000 in prize money.

To read all of Cross Cultural Opportunity Leads To Business Growth go to Forbes.com.

 

How Mindfulness Will Improve Your Business and Your Holiday

Whether your company is still recovering from the recession or experiencing growing pains, Thanksgiving is a perfect time to pause and take control. Not of your business, take control of your mind by using mindfulness techniques. It will help you become a more self-aware leader who understands yourself, your motivations, your values and the purpose of your leadership. Over time, you will find that you have become more effective and satisfied in your work.

To read all of How Mindfulness Will Improve Your Business and Your Holiday go to Forbes.com.



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