According to the 2017 State Of Women-owned Businesses Report commissioned by American Express, women-owned businesses now account for nearly 40 percent of all companies in the United States. With the increase in the number of women-owned firms a whopping 114 percent (compared to the 44 percent increase among all businesses) from 1997 to 2017, it’s evident women entrepreneurs are a powerful force within the U.S. economy.
Some helpful resources exist to help female entrepreneurs as they start and grow their companies. Several to have on your radar include:
NAWBO is a dues-based organization that represents the interests of all women entrepreneurs in all industries and across the nation. Local chapters can be found across the country.
Hosted in Denver, Colorado, these podcast episodes deliver inspiration and insight from successful women business owners on a variety of topics.
AWBC is a national nonprofit that supports and sustains over 100 Women’s Business Centers throughout the United States. The centers provide training, mentoring, business development and financing opportunities to over 140,000 women entrepreneurs each year.
The SBA has online guides to help entrepreneurs plan, launch, manage and grow their businesses. The organization also provides a number of funding programs, including loans, investment capital, surety bonds, disaster assistance and grants.
SCORE has a section of its website devoted to women entrepreneurs. You can find a variety of resources there including webinars and articles about overcoming business challenges and funding opportunities. SCORE also offers free mentoring to entrepreneurs at its over 360 chapters across the United States and via phone, email and video call (Skype and Google Hangouts).
Walker’s Legacy is a global platform for professional and entrepreneurial women of all cultures. The organization provides training programs, multimedia content, and special events to empower and inspire. Walker’s Legacy is also partnering with SCORE, connecting women entrepreneurs with mentors who can help guide them through startup and business management challenges.
If you or a woman you know has dreamed of starting a business or is striving to grow an existing one, consider tapping the expertise and tools the above organizations offer. A good place to start is by contacting SCORE to talk with a mentor who can help you assess your needs and plan your next steps.