Saturday, November 22, 2008

NCWIE: Entrepreneurship

Fellow CU-WISE Executive member Barbora and I are currently in London, Ontario for the National Conference on Women in Engineering, or NCWIE. We've been to conferences like this before (like the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing), but this time we have come as speakers!

I made it to a couple of talks yesterday, but the one I remember the most was about entrepreneurship. Jennifer MacDonald appeared on CBC's version of the Dragon's Den to pitch her organic salad dressing that contained flax seed oil and didn't taste terrible because of it. She did fairly well in the Den, got a deal, and is now looking at options for selling her company after growing it with her investors (and she'll continue to profit as a result, of course).

She spoke with such enthusiasm that my small thoughts of one day having my own business turned into a real desire. This is partly thanks to Barb, who very much want to work with our CU-WISE executive team to make something happen (since we already work so well together). I have no idea what kind of business I'd like to do (design a product? provide a service? consult?), but I will now be watching for ideas and some kind of need in the market. Perhaps I should start reading books about the topic, such as ZAG, a title about branding recommended by Jennifer.

If that great idea ever does strike, I'm happy to know that there is help to get started. Take Women 2.0:
Women 2.0 is committed to increasing the number of women entrepreneurs starting high growth ventures by providing the resources, network, and knowledge for the launch and growth of their company.

Our vision is to be a catalyst for change, mobilizing a global community of ambitious women entrepreneurs seeking to advance the world through technology.
Maybe we'll even be able to enter one of their startup competitions:
Despite the downturn in the economy, many entrepreneurs and VCs are saying that now is a great time to start a company. The Women 2.0 Pitch 2009 competition can get you started. Here is your chance to PITCH.
In the meantime, I'm glad to know that my potential career path of becoming an instructor at university might support the idea of developing a start-up during the summer months off. The future feels very exciting...


Barbora Dej said...

Couldn't have said it better myself! I'm curious where this will lead us...

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