Join us in our pursuit on behalf of women in innovation & entrepreneurship.
The UN theme of International Women’s Day this year is “Women in Leadership: Achieving an Equal Future in a COVID-19 World” As a female-founded company, we’re proud to be able to provide a disruptive technology to the CPG and retail industry. We are grateful to receive funding that supports our growth toward that goal and for our many forward-looking supporting, notwithstanding age or gender.
That said, there’s a lot more work to do - not just for us in our work at Adrich, but in the global effort to support women's equality, including the pursuit of leadership and entrepreneurial opportunities.
Approximately 20% of startups are founded by women and less than 3% of venture funding goes to women. The most recent data tells us that only 6.6% of Fortune 500 CEOs are women. According to Crunchbase data, “not only did total funding to female-led startups fall this year, but the proportion of dollars to female-only founders also declined, to 2.3 percent, compared to 2.8 percent in 2019.”
Why aren’t more women pursuing entrepreneurship or positions at the top of the leadership ladder?
Making female entrepreneurs more visible to the younger generation
My experience thus far as a female founder has been one of the rewarding (yet challenging) experiences of my life. However, my path to getting here started much earlier than the founding of the company. Growing up in an entrepreneurial family, I learned from watching my parents start and run their own businesses. As my parents modeled entrepreneurship for me, I not only learned skills and behaviors that would serve me in my journey, but that the decision to start a company was even a possibility at all. According to the New York Times, “research shows that women around the world are less likely to consider entrepreneurship as a career path, largely because they don’t see other women entrepreneurs as role models.” As a young girl, I was able to see both of my parents pursue entrepreneurship and it became part my framework for what was possible in my life. While not every girl’s parents will become entrepreneurs, I believe it is important that we make female entrepreneurs more visible to the youngest generation of future leaders.
Diversity and inclusion are especially important for founders and entrepreneurs
Not only do I believe that it is important to empower women to pursue leadership opportunities, but to create the opportunity for everyone to benefit from a diverse set of perspectives and culture of inclusion. A lack of diversity is a risk, especially for ambitious startups seeking to upend the status quo. It is so important to get different perspectives to avoid what I call "founder shortsightedness". Having folks complementing your weakness and being open to new ideas sets a foundation for innovation. Everyone has different strengths and those strengths come from different backgrounds and experiences. When only specific experiences are represented, you can get blindsided and not come to the most optimal conclusion or decision making. Not only is representation the right thing to do, it is a practical decision that benefits everyone.
Equality in Post-Pandemic World
It is no secret that the global pandemic has taken a dramatic toll on women in many ways, one of which is the health of their businesses. But, did you know that countries with women leaders are considered to have had better responses to managing COVID-19? It is my hope that in a Post-COVID world, we can achieve more equality for all. After all, equality benefits everyone. In the words of Melinda Gates, "Gender diversity is not just good for women; it's good for anyone who wants results."