Women in the Business Arena™ EP130: Women Empowering Other Women in Business

“I hear so many people complaining now that Austin’s changing: ‘Oh it’s becoming a little bit too commercialized, we’re losing small businesses’ – so you’ve got to go out there and shop the small businesses, folks! You’ve got to make sure that if you really believe in the values of these businesses in your local communities – yes, it could be more convenient to shop at Costco, but what if you went to that small business owner and bought from her? And supported those people just in your neighborhood?” – Laura Shook-Guzman

We’re celebrating Women’s Small Business month here in the US, and you know by now that Laura and I absolutely love talking about, connecting with, and celebrating our fellow women in the business arena. We’ve both been incredibly lucky to be surrounded by supportive, inspiring communities of other women entrepreneurs.

Not every woman has such a positive relationship with other women, however; many of us have experienced bullying or exclusion by other women, both in our personal lives and in the world of business, too. 

This got us thinking about the many and nuanced ways women relate to each other. We’ve all grown up in patriarchal society, which often pits women against each other and teaches them that there’s only enough space for a few women at the top.

“I think we also have to look at where we’re actually disempowering people. It’s not just what we’re not doing – what are we doing that’s disempowering? In what ways are we diminishing women, keeping them down, looking at them with judgement? Because the number one thing I hear from women who are afraid to step into their power – or women who are struggling to get their voice out or succeed in their business –  is fear of judgment and criticism. How have each one of us been contributing to that judgment and criticism?” – Sonya Stattmann

As women, we have huge potential for creating change in our communities, in the market, and in the world at large. But it’s crucial that we band together and lift each other up if we want these changes to become reality. 

Laura and I wanted to explore the complicated work of empowering other women in this week’s podcast, and we had a super juicy conversation. We talked about how we support women now, how we could do more, and why it’s so important to make sure we reflect on the ways we may be intentionally or unintentionally undermining other women.

We also chat about why we have to examine our internalized biases when it comes to gender and race and how we can use our purchasing power to support small business owners and other women in our communities. And of course, we talk about why it’s crucial to do this work with self-compassion, so you don’t flood yourself with guilt, shame, or denial and stop working on this altogether. (I told you, this is a seriously juicy episode!) 

What You’ll Learn:

  • Why we all have a different outlook on sisterhood and on supporting other women.
  • How you can make yourself more visible as a woman in the business arena and make it easier for other people to support you.  
  • Why we have to reflect on our own internal biases and how we may be intentionally or accidentally disempowering other women.
  • What you can do to lift other women up and widen your own circle of supportive, entrepreneurial women.
  • How you can respond when you hear other people criticizing a woman who’s bravely putting herself out there.
  • Why it’s important to do this work with self-compassion and curiosity, rather than guilt and self-criticism. 

Resources for this Episode:

  • Not sure where to take your business next? Looking for more money, fulfillment, or freedom? Take my free, 2-minute Business Assessment to find out where you are now & what strategies to implement to take your business where you want to go. 
  • Causebox
  • Femeconomy

Come join us in the Women in the Business Arena Group on Facebook – we’d love to hear about you & your business!