Tag Archives: women business certification

TOP 5 REASONS TO PARTNER WITH A CERTIFIED WOMAN-OWNED BUSINESS

A certified woman-owned business is not a feat that is achieved overnight! Women-owned businesses undergo a thorough formal documentation and site visit from a third-party certifier (such as WBEC-West) before they are accredited.

The business is highly scrutinized and may take up to 6 months  just to complete the paperwork and receive certification. If that justifies the importance of being a certified woman-owned business, there are more advantages to partner with one. The top reasons are:

  1. Opportunities

This would be the primary and most important reason to partner with a certified woman-owned business.  The federal government sets aside opportunities (contracts) every year for qualifying women owned small businesses.  The number and size of these contracts varies by industry based on how well women are represented.  As you’d expect,  there are more opportunities available in industries  that are underrepresented in women business owners.

  1. Drives Competition

After partnering with a woman-certified business your company has access to other multiple avenues for goods and services. This allows you to compare prices with your existing vendors and service providers and drive them to offer you more competitive prices. This opens up channels to build new supplier alliances.

  1. Taps Women Customers

Apart from women being a growing economic force for the nation and in the world, women themselves have a great buying power. Women customers not only drive sales up by their purchasing power but also market the services and products they like by speaking about it to friends, family and colleagues. This no-cost word of mouth marketing can lead to spiking profits for the partnering company.

  1. Showcases Diversity

Diversity positively impacts the bottom line of any business. Working with woman-owned businesses sends a message to vendors, investors and potential customers that your company supports diversity. This in turn, enhances economic growth in local communities.

  1. Promotes Innovation

Woman-owned businesses, normally being smaller companies, are aware of the tough competition and hence try to bring more innovative and creative solutions to the table. Partnering with a smaller team provides the advantage of getting prompt customer service. They are also able to assist by making quicker course corrections and provide much faster turn-around times than their larger competitors.

As woman-owned businesses grow, it will boost the nation’s economy. Moreover, it will leave a lasting impression on your company profile, by being one which has assisted economic growth by partnering with local, diverse and minority communities.

Top 4 Things to Consider When Looking for a Potential Business Partner

Want to find the perfect business partner to take your company to the next level? Joint ventures are wonderful when they work, but let’s face it, finding the right business partner is not easy by any means.

When looking for a potential business partner you’ve got to find one that is as motivated as you to get the job done and is willing to do their share of the work to take your company to where you envision it to be. As women business owners, relationship building is one of our key strengths, but when evaluating a potential business partner, you’ve got to keep a few key things in mind.

Here are top 4 things to consider when looking for a potential business partner:

  1. Building Trust

Trust is key in any relationship and the same goes for a business partnership. If you can’t completely trust someone with confidential and critical information about your company then you need to think twice about getting into a business relationship with them. Trust is the first building block for starting a business partnership.

  1. Converting Friendship to Business

A good friendship can often be a great starting point for a successful business relationship. However, you need to evaluate if your friend’s values and goals match your own. Also you need to ensure that the responsibilities you both have agreed to are met and everyone is doing their fair share of work. You also have to agree to disagree and  not let business come in the way of a strong friendship – no matter come what may.

  1. Money Matters

Money is often the main reason for souring a good business relationship. To ensure that your new business partnership venture starts out on the right foot, when it gets down to money, being clear cut and getting everything on paper is key. Key points to discuss include each partner’s contribution, how profits will be distributed and losses will be borne.

  1. Sharing Responsibilities

When one partner ends up doing more than what was agreed to and the other partner seems to slack or not share the load fairly, that is often the root to why a good business partnership eventually falls apart. Again, it is important that all parties involved agree (in writing) to what their responsibilities are going to be, so nothing is taken for granted.

In conclusion, finding a good business partner takes time and is not something you should rush into. The first step is to meet with like-minded business owners who are as passionate and motivated as you are and have varied strengths that compliment your own so they can bring a new perspective to the table.

Getting certified is a great way to network with enthusiastic women business owners just like you. Find out more here.

Top 3 Work-Life Balance Tips for Women in Business

Did you know that work-life balance is now considered to be the second top consideration, after compensation, for procuring and retaining employees?

So it goes without saying that if employees demand work-life balance – as a business owner, maintaining work-life balance is essential to be more effective and feel fulfilled both in your personal and professional life.

In today’s digital world, work does not end at the office. With smart technology you can literally bring the office home and be in constant contact and control. That said, at times you might feel you are working around the clock and that pressure can affect your stress levels, family life and health.

So, as a woman business owner, how do you maintain work-life balance?

  1. Build a strong support structure: Although gender expectations still exist in present society today, dividing duties and gaining support from your partner is key to building your business and taking care of the family. Extended family can also be a tremendous resource when you have conflicting commitments between work and home. Always be appreciative of the help you get and that gift will be there when you need it again.
  1. Plan and prioritize: You would not be late for a meeting with an important client, so don’t be late to pick up your kids from school. Balancing work and life means having to plan and prioritize and giving equal importance to both areas. If you’re a workaholic you’ll need to discipline yourself to perhaps stay unplugged for an hour or two when you get home so you can truly focus on the family, the kids and most importantly, yourself.
  2. Nurture and nourish: Finding work-life balance goes beyond just finding time, it means finding quality time for yourself and indulging in the things you love to do, so when you go back to your business you are ready to tackle the day – no matter what it might bring. Self care is essential in restoring and maintaining your well-being, keeping your energy levels high and leading with clarity and purpose. This means keeping your eating and sleeping habits in check is key. On an emotional level, learn to forgive, forget and let go. Also learning to not take life too seriously can do wonders to reduce stress levels and create a more balanced way of life.

Being a respectable and successful woman business owner and making your mark felt, means believing in yourself and pushing your boundaries. Getting certified can be a great way to climb the ladder of success and still meet both your work and life goals.

5 Game Changing Facts You Need to Know About Women in Business Today

Did you know that women entrepreneurs account for owning almost half of all businesses in the USA?

Today more than ever, more and more women are entering the world of business. A recent study showed that one out of every eleven adult women, is a business owner in the USA. It’s not surprising since many women today are simply breaking free from gender-based stereotypes, or are re-entering the workforce or starting their own business after rearing children. Also women are just naturally wired for juggling family and work and multi-tasking.

In fact, according to research reported by the SBA in May 2016, there are more women entering the business world today, than ever before. Here are some game-changing facts worth noting:

  1. “Women are entering  the  ranks  of  business  ownership  at  record  rates.  Women  are launching a net of more than 1,100 new businesses every single day.”
  2. “Women-owned businesses comprise 36% of the country’s businesses. They employ more than 8  million workers,  7  percent of  the  private-sector workforce.  They  generate more than $1.4 trillion in revenues, contributing 4% of business revenue.”
  3. “In 2002, there  were fewer than  1  million  minority  women-owned  firms.  As  of  2012, there  are  nearly  3.8  million  firms  owned  by  women  of  color.  Between  2002  and  2012, the number of non-minority women-owned businesses grew by just 9 percent, while the number of minority women-owned businesses overall grew by 315 percent.”
  4. “Between 2007 and 2012, the number of female veteran-owned businesses increased by 295 percent. Today there  are  more  than  383,000  female  veteran-owned  businesses  in the U.S.”
  5. In fact 2015 proved to be a historic year in terms of Federal contracting because, “for the first time in history, the Federal Government met the 5 percent women-owned small business (WOSB) goal.  In  FY15, 5.05  percent  or  $17.8  billion of  all  federal  small  business eligible contracting dollars were awarded to WOSBs.”

These facts are exciting news for women entering the world of business and women looking to take their business to new heights. At WBEC-West we help women entrepreneurs everyday get the certification they need to procure essential contracts and grow their business.

This one step alone can be the game-changer you need to get your business noticed and be an increasingly successful women business entrepreneur. Learn how we can help.

Five Proven Ways Women Business Owners Can Promote Their Company

Are you a woman business owner looking for new clients? For any business lead generation is key to ensure a constant flow of clients to fuel business growth.

You may have a great brand, wonderful staff and a passion for what you do, but without promotion you can only grow to a certain point if you don’t get in front of those who want to do business with you.

Here are 5 proven ways women business owners can promote their company:

  1. Have a Responsive Website: This one may seem obvious, but there are still those who don’t have a website. With the world going digital having a responsive website (optimized for mobile phones and smart devices) is essential today. Make sure your web address is included on all printed material such as business cards, catalogs, invoices, packaging and more. Also be sure to include it in online publications, newsletters and social media to drive people to visit you online.
  2. Press Releases – It’s important to shout out and perhaps send out a press release when you have something to announce, such as a new and improved web experience, a new product or service your company has introduced, an important member of staff or perhaps a new technology your firm has adopted. Make your announcement to the media, targeted mailing lists of potential clients and be sure to include all of your current customers and clients.
  3. Business Networking & Social Media – Attending networking events and Business Matchmakers are a great way to meet new business owners and potential clients and build connections. But why stop there? Setting up a company page on some popular Social Media outlets can get you seen globally, not just locally. One thing to note however is that when you’re marketing on social media make sure your messages reflect your brand identity which can take years to build, but often just one mistake to destroy.
  4. Multi-channel Business Marketing – Still handing out business cards at conferences and using direct mail to distribute brochures? Just like everything else, business promotion has also evolved. There are many automated marketing solutions in the market that will send out email, SMS, voice messages and even surveys on auto-pilot for you, so you can focus on your business while the software helps you generate new leads.
  5. Getting Certified – Getting certified is a critical step towards business promotion. Organizations like WBEC-West make sure their WBEs get ample exposure by showcasing them in their quarterly newsletters and sending out an email to their large list of WBEs and Corporate Sponsors. This one step alone can get you the potential eyeballs you need to get your business noticed to procure key contracts.

Do you have more marketing tips to share? Let us know in the comments below.