Women Interactive, the two-day interactive technology festival for women of color, debuted in Atlanta this past weekend. The inaugural festival was hosted at the Spelman College Digital Moving Image Salon and featured various forms of media, speakers, films and tech workshops aimed at women entrepreneurs. The festival’s aim is to encourage creative types and empower novices to use technology for content creation.
A new AMEX Open infograph revealed that while women own 29% of all businesses, they only employ 6% of the country’s workforce. The data also revealed that women-owned businesses are experiencing slow growth. A big part of being an entrepreneur is achieving milestones, taking risks, and allowing room for growth.
We asked Art of Genius creators and founders of Women Interactive (WI) Ashia Sims and Sabrina Harvey to provide tips on how to set yourself up to win when deciding to embark on the female entrepreneurial journey.
1. Be fearless.
“Don’t be afraid to jump in with both feet. When you’re creating something from nothing, fear is inevitable. Don’t let it stop you,” says Sims and Harvey. While venturing into the world of business ownership can be scary at first, allow yourself to be okay with fear. Accept it, take ownership, and commit to taking risks because the lifespan of your success depends on it.
2. Be rebellious.
Tap into your rebellious nature and don’t be afraid to move on your idea. Well-behaved women don’t make history, says the Women’s Interactive duo.
3. Think outside the box.
No idea is a stupid one. Sometimes the best projects come out of unexpected ideas, advises Sims and Harvey. Bounce ideas off of your mentors, advisors, friends and family for their feedback. But don’t forget to trust your intuition–it has value.
4. Define your digital identity.
Sims and Harvey suggest that aspiring entrepreneurs think about how you can use technology to reflect your true authentic self and make an impact on the world around you.
5. Create with intention.
Make your moves for your business both physically and online purposeful, says WI founders Sims and Harvey. When creating content/business for the digital space, think not only about what you hope to gain but what you hope to contribute. What you create online lives forever and is a part of your digital legacy.
Before jumping the gun, Sims and Harvey advise women to ask themselves the following questions:
How are you contributing to the world around you?
How are you bettering the lives of the people who interact with or use your product?
What is your purpose for being in the digital space?
When you know who you are and what you hope to create, it serves as a guide for hope to shape your life and your business.