This post by Blackstone Content Correspondent Summer Suleiman originally appeared on ideavillage.org.
In honor of Women’s Entrepreneurship Day on November 19th, we are highlighting some of New Orleans’ own female entrepreneurs. And while we love to highlight all of our entrepreneurs doing awesome things, today, is about giving the ladies some love!
Although this post is not inclusive of all of the women who are rockin’ the startup scene in New Orleans, we wanted to start by highlighting a few in our entrepreneurial community who’ve worked with The Idea Village, Propeller and PowerMoves.NOLA.
We asked these entrepreneurs to share some advice with other women who may be considering starting their own businesses.
Here’s what they had to say.
Co-founders Latona Giwa and Dana Keren, Birthmark Doulas
“I’d encourage anyone who is considering starting her own business in New Orleans to make the most of this amazing city. There are so many resources to utilize, amazing organizations to partner with, smart people to collaborate and bounce ideas off of. Immerse yourself in this city and all it has to offer!” —Dana Keren
Co-founder Crystal McDonald, GoToInterview
“Entrepreneurship is one of the most rewarding expressions of creativity and thought that I have had the pleasure of experiencing. For women who plan to start their own business… if you have an idea, take the critical leap of making it real. During your journey stay relentlessly focused on what drives value for your customers, investors, and employees. Again, eliminate the noise and get to the business of turning your vision into a reality.”
Owner, Dr. Mignonne Mary, Remedy Room
“I would advise them to only start a business they absolutely love doing so when they spend so much time in it, with it, talking about it each day, it doesn’t feel like work but remains fun and fulfilling. It almost feels like raising another (needy) child that requires so much attention, but of course you love it and would do anything for it. Put down the phone and turn off the “work” station in your head when you’re with your real children or loved ones. Focus and be as present as possible with the other people in your life when you’re not at work. Otherwise it can be consuming.”
—Dr. Mignonne Mary
Co-founder Uchechi Kalu Jacobson, Wedocracy
“As a tech startup entrepreneur (www.wedocracy.com) and newcomer to New Orleans, I’ve found that it’s very welcoming here, but you do have to find the door in. How do you do this? Find different meetup groups to attend that focus on your diverse interests, even if it doesn’t seem directly connected to your business. There’s a deep intersection between social groups and entrepreneurship in New Orleans. Your wine lovers group or Mardi Gras krewe could become a space where you find other entrepreneurs and get intros to the right people to help you succeed in your business.”
—Uchechi Kalu Jacobson
Co-founders Catherine Todd and Collin Ferguson, Where Y’Art
“As a woman and entrepreneur, competition is tough. We tend to gauge success based on victories. But we have to be thankful for the wins, and learn from the losses. It is the challenging moments that force you to question your assumptions, look for a different point of view, only to discover a solution that is greater than you imagined.”