Why is it important to support women-owned businesses?
We were thrilled to attend the FWD Collective Summit last month. The energy in the room was incredible - everyone present was dedicated to uplifting women, people of color, and underrepresented groups in the business world. With so many great minds gathered in one place, we just had to ask... why is it important to support women-owned businesses?
Latecia Patton, YWCA Economic Empowerment Center
“It is so important to support women-owned businesses because by doing this we are increasing the economic stability of our families and communities. By women owning their own businesses they are able to create jobs, grow wealth, and give back in so many ways. They also help shape the way other young girls see themselves as they grow and develop into leaders. As the Director of the Economic Empowerment Institute at the YWCA Metropolitan Chicago, we fully engage women in every avenue of going from striving to thriving. That can mean helping them find a career they are passionate about or helping them start their own business. ... We provide women the support they need, an opportunity to grow, and help develop their passion. They then are able to become empowered leaders of the community.”
“Because women are the backbone of our country. I’m going to just be that bold to say that. And, everything starts with woman. I am woman, hear me roar. So, why not support the woman, and their business, and our struggle? And I believe that a lot has changed over the years, and we are starting to get more recognition. I’m a woman, my business is Windy City Mamarazzi, and I’m in a male-dominated field. So go girl power, whenever possible.” -Azia Hawthorne, Windy City Mamarazzi
Dima Elissa, Women in bio chicago + Vismed-3d
“Women, predominantly, are the most creative, profitable, and efficient business owners, creators, and designers. If we don’t support the core of our economy represented by women, we are mitigating against job creation and continued scaling and opportunities to build our country’s strength at its core, which is largely driven by women. If you look at boards, companies with diverse boards tend to have higher profits, more capital efficient, and if we extend that to women-owned businesses at the smaller levels you can only imagine how exponentially impactful that concept is. So it’s really incumbent on us to support women through and through, from tip to toe in their various ventures and efforts.”
Imara Jones, Love Emme
"As a woman, I know that other women like some of the same things I like. I realize when I go shopping in particular, I like to pick from things that other women have decided are nice, and I’m inclined to agree with that. I also think just because I’ve been buying from men-owned businesses for so long, I really get so excited when I meet businesses run by women. So it’s almost a natural inclination for me to support these businesses."
Silvana Favaretto, The tulle Project
“It’s hard to answer that question because it’s so obvious in my head… women are amazing and the fact that we are not valued for how amazing we are is completely backwards. … Our moms didn’t have the same opportunities we do. That’s why we have the responsibility to help women move forward, we’re privileged to do that. … For me, it’s a responsibility. I have to do this. Women are amazing, we have to let people know.”
Kesia King, Chop Chop mobile salon & Barber
“We just face a lot of different challenges that are unique to being a woman... things like being taken seriously, not letting the outer appearance distract from being able to get certain things, even when it comes to funding we know that women’s businesses and women owners are funded less than men. ... It’s just important to support each other and make sure that we’re connected, because we can do a lot within our own network.”
Minnie Minor, Oink Group Inc.
“I believe it’s important to support women in their own businesses because it’s a man’s world. And I think most people will agree with that. A lot of women wear many hats. We juggle many things every day. And being in business, it takes a special kind of push, a special kind of effort to get things done, be successful, and if you don’t have the support it can be really bad. The chances of you growing and being successful can be very slim.”
“Our CEO Dorri McWhorter, one of her key points is that when you understand the control that women have in our society in regard to spend, in regard to how families operate and move, that is directly connected to understanding the importance of supporting women-owned businesses… that money is then going back into these families and is going forward to make other decisions in regard to our society.” -Brandon Evans, YWCA Business and Entrepreneurship Services
Michael Donnelly, FWD Collective
“I think it’s important to support women-owned businesses because initiatives around entrepreneurship of any level and type are important. But for women and specifically women and people of color and underrepresented communities, it’s about making the opportunity available.”
Neal Sales-Griffin, CodeNow
"Being deliberate about supporting women-owned businesses puts actions to words… even if you’re not a woman, it’s not that hard to realize how important it is to support all those people you love around you and make sure this world is shaped in a way that they can be a part of it too. So that’s why I support women-owned businesses."
“I believe that it’s important to support women-owned businesses because I believe that’s how women-owned businesses are going to grow… and I think that if we don’t provide that sort of support to each other, then the growth won’t be there. So for me, it’s just why wouldn’t I buy from a woman?” -Freida Curry, WBDC
“The reason why I like supporting women’s businesses is because I’m a woman business owner and I like helping other people. I also think women are kind of undercut and you know, I just think that we don’t get the credit we should be getting.” -Anna Maria Viti-Welch, The Viti Companies
Claire lew, Know Your Company
“I think it’s important to support women-owned businesses just because historically, women have been underrepresented in terms of business ownership. They are given fewer loans, they face more obstacles in terms of gaining funding. And on top of that, happen unfortunately to face misogyny and discrimination like a lot of other minorities. So that being said, it’s great to support women-owned businesses because you give exposure and reward women who are working hard to bring value to society and you’ve got to feel good about that.”