My advice to my clients and the women business owners I encounter can probably be boiled down to three words: sell, sell, sell. As I was reading the Vinetta Project’s 2018 Summer Impact Report, the mantra #CapitaltoConquer caught my eye and forced me to ask myself the question – how am I using my capital to conquer?
As an angel investor, I do look specifically for female founders in my investments but as a business owner there is more that I buy. I want to put more money in the hands of women business owners so I looked into some easy ways to do that in my daily purchasing. They range from fairly simple to slightly more complex and I’m sharing them here as a resource. I’d love to hear your thoughts as well.
- Check out the Women Owned Logo (pictured above) and website. The Women Owned Logo gives business owners a way to tell the world that their company is women owned. The logo is available to any company certified by WBENC or WEConnect International. It can be placed on packaging, business cards, and your website. As a consumer, not only can you look for these products in the wild, as I did on a recent flight, but you can check out the Women Owned directory which has a list of women owned businesses that sell goods in different categories – kids and baby, home and office, clothing and accessories, health and wellness, food, etc. You can search the companies by product type or browse the roundups and recipes section to see how you can use women owned businesses to help you go green or see which of your current staples are women owned. If your company sells a product that can be purchased online, and you meet the criteria for women’s business enterprise certification, you can add your company to the Women Owned directory. If you have any questions about getting certified, you can check out the 12PointFive blog or connect with me to ask.
- Amazon’s business account allows you to apply seller credentials such as small business and women owned business to your orders. Once you sign up for a business account, you can go to “Manage Suppliers” to search by various diversity credentials including small business, woman owned business, veteran owned business, LGBT owned business and more. Amazon allows businesses to upload their diversity credentials and they make it easy to do that little bit of diligence. I was able to find pens sold by a woman owned business and since WEConnect International, NGLCC, and NMSDC have expanded their certifications globally, companies both inside and outside the U.S. can upload their credentials.
- For DC business owners interested in buying from women and buying local, you can search for women owned businesses in The Beacon DC Directory where you can find women owned consulting businesses and resource providers. If you’re looking for local restaurants and shops, Just Muni is developing an app to help you find just that.
- If you are a business owner who wants to track your spend with other women owned companies so you can report that to your customers, you can start your own supplier diversity program. The first step is seeing what you are doing already in terms of diverse suppliers, setting goals, and communicating that to employees and customers. I will be creating more content around creating a supplier diversity program in coming months so if you have challenges, successes or sticking points to share, please let me know!
How are you using capital to conquer?