8 startups, lead by females & their companies. 6 judges with high creds. One massive space, a stage, a smiley audience & the 5 minutes to pitch your business. Three prizes 1st, 2nd, 3rd – cash, office space, mentorship. And overall kudos as being recognised as a leading female founded business in China.
The room radiates and is alive with filled with passionate, ambitious, driven, intelligent and articulate women, who are all already successful, no matter the outcome of the pitch competition.
Brought to you by IPWS, Green & Gorgeous Shanghai, Chinaccelerator, Naked Hub, Angelvest & many others – these companies put together a first of it’s kind in Shanghai. An opportunity for women founders to meet others like minded, pitch their business and network.
chozun was up against 7 other businesses across a range of industries, some in Fashion, Art, VR, eCommerce. We were honoured to be awarded the inaugural First Prize of the GBC Startup competition for Women Entrepreneurship.
The best part though, was not winning (although that was super sweet). In fact, the best part was being a part of a strong female community, who were all so supportive of one another. These fellow females, had similar struggles, similar start up tales, similar determination, positive attitudes and passion. And if we didn’t have similar experiences, we had empathy towards one another for each others circumstance.
Being in a room full of such driven women was incredible. After the night, both Zia and myself were on a high. Had a real buzz. It made me think about fellow women, as leaders.
Here’s some short takeaways of what other women leaders teach me, daily:
Women are resilient. So, so resilient.
We’re articulate, intelligent & driven like no other.
Women need to back themselves more.
We’re good at recognising our strengths, but sometimes our own worst enemy when it comes to critiquing the things we aren’t so amazing at. I’ve learnt, as two female founders, you have to back yourself. You’re the only one setting your alarm each morning.
Women are problem solvers. Fighters. Survivors.
We take initiative to learn, get the answers and won’t be held back by others.
Women sometimes undercut one another.
They can be competitive (somewhat healthy), sometimes jealous (very unhealthy). It’s far more fulfilling seeing your fellow gal pal succeed and riding the joy wave with them, than not.
Women are amazing – in business, in life.
Whether you’re the CEO of a multimillion dollar company, or run a start up, whether you’re an artist, an Accountant, a mother, a daughter, a carer, you’re awesome. Remember your strength, and feed off it and other women to drive you forward.
I always am asked if I have a favourite female role model. And I don’t. I have had many women throughout my life and still to this day, inspire me, guide me. They aren’t famous. They are surrounding me, daily. Your average woman. Achieving life. And business. Friends, family, mentors.
Make your own story, then tell it.