News

12Apr
Blog
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Cartier and TED believe in the power of bold ideas to empower local initiatives to have global impact. To celebrate Cartier’s dedication to launching the ideas of female entrepreneurs into concrete change, TED has curated a special session of talks around the theme “Bold Alchemy” for the Cartier Women’s Initiative Awards, featuring a selection of favorite TED speakers.

Leading up to the session, TED talked with artist and musician Gingger Shankar.

10Apr
Blog
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One of the biggest lessons I’ve learned as an entrepreneur and a business woman was to understand deeply what my purpose is and the legacy I want to leave in society. I am Latina and I dream of being able to integrate women in the digital economy. Although they joined the labor market after the industrial revolution, women were not empowered and were not the mobilizers of that revolution. Today we have the opportunity to lead a different kind of revolution - the digital one - creating companies and making our own rules of the game.

Here are a few other lessons that have driven me forward every day.

03Apr
Blog
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Starting a social enterprise and raising capital is hard enough, but it’s made much harder when gender bias continues to exist.
Fortunately, there’s no lack of women leaders in the global development community, and if we, as men, make it a point to champion them, we can play our small part in paving the way for their advancement.

27Mar
Blog
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Much has been written about the stereotypes contributing to the lack of women in the c-suite. But to what extent are women’s own assumptions holding them back?

26Mar
Blog
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Cartier and TED believe in the power of bold ideas to empower local initiatives to have global impact. To celebrate Cartier’s dedication to launching the ideas of female entrepreneurs into concrete change, TED has curated a special session of talks around the theme “Bold Alchemy” for the Cartier Women’s Initiative Awards, featuring a selection of favorite TED speakers.

Leading up to the session, TED talked with entrepreneur, investor and TED Fellow Matilda Ho about what inspires her work to bring local, organically grown food to families that need it.

20Mar
Blog
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As a founder of a startup, you always face a lot of challenges. And if you happen to be a woman living in a developing country, multiply these challenges by ten.

Running any for-profit business in such conditions is a true road to hell, let alone a social enterprise.

I recently had the opportunity to attend a social entrepreneurship training program at INSEAD that put things into perspective for me.

13Mar
Blog
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My parents emigrated from Bombay to Buffalo, New York, in 1978. When as children, my brother and I didn’t finish our plates, my mother used to share an anecdote with us – one time in Kolkata, she threw a piece of bread onto her street for the local stray dog, and a street kid rushed over, pushed the animal away, and gobbled it up.

That story often made me wonder, why was I so lucky when there were so many children in the world who were not?

My curiosity and quest for answers led me to a trip abroad that would sow the seeds of my career as a social entrepreneur.

09Mar
Blog
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Cartier and TED believe in the power of bold ideas to empower local initiatives to have global impact. To celebrate Cartier’s dedication to launching the ideas of female entrepreneurs into concrete change, TED has curated a special session of talks around the theme “Bold Alchemy” for the Cartier Women’s Initiative Awards, featuring a selection of favorite TED speakers.

Leading up to the session, TED talked with women’s health advocate and TED Fellow Zubaida Bai about what inspires her work to improve the health and livelihoods of women worldwide.

08Mar
Blog
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Women are starting businesses at unprecedented rates. Yet, unequal opportunities are holding them back from reaching their full potential.

This #InternationalWomensDay, at the Cartier Women’s Initiative Awards, we asked investors, policymakers, corporate leaders, male champions and women founders how we can make progress happen.

07Mar
Blog
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If women in leadership positions boost performance numbers, as research shows, then all companies must surely be pushing to make gender equality a priority. But that’s not exactly the case.
Yes, progress in gender equality in the corporate world is moving forward at a painstaking pace and no one knows this better than women who work there.

05Mar
Blog
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VC is working for some women entrepreneurs, don’t get me wrong. However, in my years as an investor who pays a lot of attention to women entrepreneurs and invests with a gender lens, I think there are several shifts in perception the entire community can make that would have a profound impact on the amount of capital flowing in this direction. Cartier Women’s Initiative asked me for a recipe. I think we have to start with ingredients.

05Mar
Blog
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The underlying structure of society is changing in ways we have never seen. While people are living longer than ever before, reproduction rates have fallen below the population-replacement level of 2.1. The consequence? Soon, the world will have more people over 65 than under 14. This translates into a shrinking labor force and a necessity to create an environment that supports the engagement of all workers. We simply cannot afford to discount anyone based on their personal characteristics, while ignoring their potential, their accomplishments, innovation and drive.

And yet, women today are routinely denied opportunities for advancement. So how, you might ask, can you start to have an impact? Turns out there is lots you can do, starting with today.

28Feb
Blog
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If we are to go by global trends, there are more and more women-led businesses being founded each year. And yet, if you google profitable businesses, or venture-backed businesses, chances are that you will find few women-led businesses at the top.

The question therefore is, what happens to all these businesses that start up so well but never reach their full potential?

28Feb
Blog
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Imagine if Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg or Steve Jobs had been born in Asia, Africa or Latin America. Do you think they would have realized their potential? Now, imagine if each of these great innovators had a sister who was equally visionary, creative and determined. Do you think she would be able to realize her potential? The answer I think we all know is ‘no.’ Secretary Hillary Clinton often said that “talent is universal but opportunity is not.”

26Feb
Blog
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I have many labels: once a McKinsey partner, now head of the Gates Foundation in China; founder of a school labelled an “icon of education innovation”; a blogger with 800,000 followers and the author of two books; and, last but not least, mother of three young children.

I often hear the question, “how do you get so much done?” Or the more curious version: “what’s your secret?”

Well, I do have a “secret recipe”, as I think of it, which is to look inward, seek out my inner voice, and ultimately, to surrender.

21Feb
Blog
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Cartier and TED believe in the power of bold ideas to empower local initiatives to have global impact. To celebrate Cartier’s dedication to launching the ideas of female entrepreneurs into concrete change, TED has curated a special session of talks around the theme “Bold Alchemy” for the Cartier Women’s Initiative Awards, featuring a selection of favorite TED speakers.

Leading up to the session, TED talked with financier, entrepreneur and onetime candidate for president of Iceland, Halla Tómasdóttir, about what influences, inspires and drives her to be bold.

14Feb
Blog

When I started soleRebels many people laughed and said I was crazy. “Your plan is to remake the barabasso into a global footwear brand leveraging the artisan talents in THAT community? What kind of business idea is that?”

To tell you the truth, sometimes I felt like we were crazy.

07Feb
Blog
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If you’re like many women I meet, you’re probably pretty tough on yourself and often focus on what you haven’t done, or didn’t totally nail, versus all that you have done and did nail!

04Nov
Blog
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How an ingenious fashion solution is revolutionizing Zika treatment

Maternova was founded by Meg Wirth, 2011 Cartier Awards finalist from the United States and has since brought on Allyson Cote as cofounder. Maternova combats maternal mortality in childbirth with a web-based marketplace for products, tools and information and by aiding clinicians in the field.

By Leah Hardenbergh - Intern at Maternova, Inc.

Maternova is a marketplace for maternal and newborn health innovations. If there is one word to summarize working in the sphere of maternal health, it is dynamic. The issues we address are vast and constantly evolving with the changing health risks worldwide for mothers and newborns. Due to the nature of the industry, we are constantly searching for innovative solutions for the latest threats to mothers. This is what led us to our project currently underway: a line of mosquito-protective clothing to protect mothers and newborns from Zika.

09Aug
Blog
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8 practical guidelines to prepare for a customer interview

By Mary Cronin - Cartier Women's Initiative Awards coach and CEO of Thousand Seeds

"Judge a man by his questions rather than by his answers." Voltaire
Asking and framing questions is a skill. There are many benefits derived from good questioning techniques. By asking the right questions we can gather the maximum amount of information in a shorter timeframe and assess what is going on more effectively. As part of developing our business and doing customer development we want to understand customer problems and needs as opposed to pitching "our" solutions'.

When preparing for a customer interview prepare about 5 questions. The estimated interview time should be about 30-40 minutes. Be clear about the purpose before you start i.e. is it a problem assessing or a solution interview? Here are 8 guidelines.

09Aug
Blog
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How are you creating growth in your business?

By Mary Cronin - Cartier Women's Initiative Awards coach and CEO of Thousand Seeds

Lean thinking, customer development and business model innovation frameworks are transforming how new products are built and how growth strategies are developed. These help organisations design products that customers need.
Lean offers ways to cut work time and eliminate waste whether you are an established or an early stage business. Customer development takes a customer-centric approach to understanding customer needs and problems. The term ‘business model’ means the design of a business. Business model innovation (BMI) looks at how a business reinvents itself in order gain competitive edge and stimulate growth. An important part of business design involves being customer-centric.