Female entrepreneurship: a matter of education

Let us promote the role of our teachers, as they are our children's first mentors. If we make concerted efforts now, more women will take their place in male-dominated occupations and more men in female-dominated professions.

By Daniele Henkel | President and Founder, Daniele Henkel Inc.

Perhaps like you, I am many women. I have paved my way in the female business world, but first and foremost, I am a mother and a proud grandmother. It would be false to say that it was always easy. To date, the journey between my different backgrounds has often been fraught with challenges.

Early on in my life, I have crossed many boundaries, both figuratively and literally. As the daughter of an immigrant and an immigrant myself, my ability to adapt has become a second nature. To develop my spirit and sense of values, I relied on my mother's force, courage and exemplary qualities. She was my first teacher, my first anchor point in life.

I am a firm believer that the cornerstones of education are at home. School is admittedly one of the major pillars of society, but values such as love, authenticity and compassion must first be taught and provided by our families.

As parents, we are role models for our children. We are their mirrors. Therefore, it is critical to instill fair values and EQUALITY to our daughters and sons at a very young age. If from the outset girls and boys do not receive the same education, gender bias will inevitably take shape... I therefore urge parents to lead by example at home. Let us encourage our young people to surpass the social expectations that limit their ambitions.

This will allow us to abolish the outdated differentiations between the sexes. Consequently, we will attract and retain more women talent in the fields of science, artificial intelligence, politics and the business world.

As women, we must stand tall as we enter the business world. We no longer need to tell ourselves that we are capable, because it is now a given. Now is the time to act.

As a business leader, I can attest in all honesty that entrepreneurship is never a long, quiet river. Each experience, every hurdle helps us realize our full potential and be better equipped in making female entrepreneurship shine. However, we must accept that we sometimes need to kneel before getting back up, just like our male colleagues.

If you have ever started a business or have the desire to do so, I APPLAUD YOU! At the same time, let me suggest another mission: to pass on the sacred fire to our future generations, because WE must communicate the value of our professions to the young generation. There are still too few women in the business world. We must take an active part in the process of change. In that respect, I encourage the development of mentoring.

Lead our successors and show them the way. Show them that a female business leader is perfectly normal. Let them know they are as formidable and audacious as their male colleagues. This is what I like to call "leading by example".

Lastly, I would add that an entire society must raise our daughters. As I have said before, education starts at home, but continues outside of it. With time, this must establish itself as a social and collective willingness.

Let us promote the role of our teachers, as they are our children's first mentors. If we make concerted efforts now, more women will take THEIR place in the parliament and high political offices in the foreseeable future. And why not more women in male-dominated occupations and more men in female-dominated professions?

I trust that tomorrow will bring equal opportunity for our children and grandchildren and that gender bias will be a thing of the past.




Danièle Henkel is caring and capable businesswoman that managed to position her personal and entrepreneurial brand in Quebec. Her eponymous brands have helped pave the way to well-being and position "beauty in truth" as a new social norm in the business world. As a genuine person of influence, she shares her knowledge by giving impactful conferences at home and abroad. Follow her on her website, on Twitter, on Facebook and on LinkedIn.