Latina speaker, author helps women become confident negotiators
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latina Leadership and negotiation strategist Elizabeth Suarez aims to empower women to obtain more money and recognition and become better negotiators.

By Laura Casillas, 9 News

Elizabeth Suarez worked in the corporate world for 15 years. After holding countless leadership positions throughout the U.S. and Central and South America, she not only has extensive insight into a male-dominated industry, but according to Suarez, it also made her realize that more women were needed at the executive table.

“I would say I lived a syndrome of me, myself, and I. There was no other Latina; there was no other woman,” Suarez said. “When I decided to retire from the corporate world, that’s when I realized that what we had to do was basically be better negotiators to be able to be in meetings where people make decisions, the problem, many women, we – Latinas are not present where decisions are being made.”

Remembering all those years in the industry takes Suarez back in time to where her dreams began.

“I started out as this girl who wanted to make a difference in the corporate world,” Suarez said. “I grew up in Puerto Rico, I am of Cuban parents, I went to the university in New York as well as [got] my master’s degree, and I was in the corporate world everywhere.”

Today, Suarez lives in Denver, she is an author, and a coach and a leadership and negotiating strategist. Suarez empowers professionals to obtain more money and recognition, while helping organizations to develop a stronger workforce.

Suarez credits a big part of her success as an entrepreneur to the people who helped push her to take the plunge.

“I have to admit it, I had a lot of people who helped me and who believed in me,” said Suarez. “I had many mentors who believed in me and even today they follow me and want to help me.”

Since then, paying it forward has always been one of Suarez’s mottos as she remembered that her mentors told her, “Hey, remember that you have to help others in your community. This is not just about you. This is about your community.”

So following in their footsteps, Suarez became a mentor of young women and after mentoring for a few years, she came to another important realization.

According to Suarez, it’s difficult for many women to advocate for themselves.

“I always say to people that culturally we have always been told that we have to be grateful – grateful for living, grateful for our health, grateful for our work. And what I’m saying is that, yes, that is important, but at the same time, we have to be able to communicate to other people that we deserve the salary, that we deserve the promotion because we have brought a lot of progress to the company,” Suarez said.

Being a good negotiator, according to Suarez, is being able to be someone who can listen to what the other person is saying. One who can understand the needs of the other person and at the same time, can communicate effectively so that the other person can understand his or her needs.

“This is not about winning everything you want; this is being able to identify a solution that will be a good thing for both people,” Suarez said.

Suarez has a daughter in college and she gives her the same advice that she gives all young women.

“You cannot assume that if they offer you the job that that’s it. I accept it, it’s over, I’m going to party, no no no,” Suarez said.

According to Suarez, women need to take it upon themselves to do a thorough investigation of the going salary for the position that they are applying for.

“There are different ways to find out. There are different apps that tell you this. The average salary of the type of job where you are living, and you have to have the strength to say, ‘This is a competition; we are playing a game. I play, and even though they offered me the job, I’m going to have to ask for more,'” she said.

Suarez encourages women to negotiate in the same manner as men do because, according to her, “Study after study shows that men always ask for more than women.”

“From the beginning, you have to negotiate more,” Suarez said, “and if they tell you that they cannot give you more money, negotiate more things. Free days, bonuses – agree to re-analyze your work in six months, and from there you can get another raise.”

Suarez is the author of the book ‘The Art of Getting Everything,’ and she has been has a keynote speaker at women’s conferences across the country, including the Women in Technology Conference where she spoke to over 650 women about the power of negotiation, networking and self advocacy.

Click here to read the full article on 9 News.

Rihanna honored as ‘national hero’ of Barbados
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By Lisa Respers France, CNN

Rihanna’s homeland wants her to continue to “shine bright like a diamond.”

The singer was honored Monday in her native Barbados during its presidential inauguration, which served to mark the country becoming a republic.
Barbadian Prime Minister Mia Mottley told the crowd, “On behalf of a grateful nation, but an even prouder people, we therefore present to you the designee for national hero of Barbados, Ambassador Robyn Rihanna Fenty.”
“May you continue to shine like a diamond and bring honor to your nation by your works, by your actions and to do credit wherever you shall go,” Mottley said.

The makeup and fashion mogul was appointed as an ambassador of Barbados in 2018.

According to a statement from the Barbados Government Information Office released at the time, the position gives the celeb “specific responsibility for promoting education, tourism and investment for the island.”

She also became one of the Caribbean island country’s cultural ambassadors in 2008, doing promotional work for its tourism ministry.

In a move that received a great deal of support in the country, Barbados formally cut ties with the British monarchy by becoming a republic almost 400 years after the first English ship arrived on the most easterly of the Caribbean islands.

Click here to read the full article on CNN.

How to File for a Small Business Patent
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woman's hand holding the word patent is written on a large design

By Deborah Sweeney

What Is a Patent?

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) defines a patent for an invention as “the grant of a property right to the inventor.”

A patent helps protect the mechanisms, principles and components of an invention. The term for a small business patent starts on the date its application is filed with the USPTO. Generally, this lasts for 20 years. Patents tend to be filed less frequently than trademarks and copyrights within small businesses. However, this is still a necessary form of intellectual property protection for inventions. 
 
How to determine an invention is patentable

How do you determine that your invention is patentable? A patentable invention is defined accordingly by the USPTO: “Whoever invents or discovers any new and useful process, machine, manufacture or composition of matter, or any new and useful improvement thereof, may obtain a patent therefore, subject to the conditions and requirements of this title.”

The USPTO further breaks down the four requirements of a patentable invention.

  • “A” patent: This is singular. Only one patent may be granted for each invention.
  • Useful: The invention must have a specific, substantial and credible utility.
  • Process, machine, manufacture, composition of matter: This is a description of the subject matter, and categories, eligible for patenting.
  • Whoever invents or discovers: The inventor is the only person who may obtain the patent.

Three types of small business patents

Once you determine your invention is patentable, you must figure out what kind of patent you need before filing for a small business patent. It’s important to understand which patent type is the right fit for your invention. Presently, there are three types of patents:

  • Utility patents
  • Design patents
  • Plant patents

Let’s explore how each patent protects a specific type of invention. Once you understand which patent is the closest categorization for your invention, we’ll look at how to apply for a patent.

Utility patents

Utility patents are among the most commonly filed small business patents with the USPTO. This type of patent may be a useful process, machine, article of manufacture, composition of matter or new or useful improvement. These are four categories of statutory subject matter and may be defined accordingly.

  • Process: This is an act, or series of acts or steps, typically from an industrial or technical process.
  • Machine: The USPTO defines machine as “a concrete thing, consisting of parts, or of certain devices and combination of devices.” Essentially, this is the literal meaning of inventing a machine.
  • Manufacture: These are articles made by the invention. They may be produced from raw or prepared materials and through either hand labor or by machinery.
  • Composition of matter: This is the chemical makeup of the invention. It may be composed of two or more substances and all composite articles. This may be gases, fluids, powders or solids.

A fifth category may also apply to the word “useful.” The invention must be able to operate and have a useful purpose. For example, a new search engine is a type of software that may qualify as a utility patent.

A utility patent also has the option to file as a provisional or nonprovisional application.

What’s the difference between the two terms? Provisional applications are a low-cost patent filing. Applicants may establish a filing date in the United States for their invention. Then, they may file a nonprovisional application to claim the invention later. Nonprovisional applications are reviewed by a patent examiner. If the invention is considered patentable, the utility patent application is filed with the USPTO.

Design patents

A design patent is granted to anyone who invents a new, original and ornamental design for an article of manufacture.

How does this small business patent differ from a utility patent? A utility patent will protect the use of an article. Design patents protect the appearance of an article, but not its structural or functional features. Famous design patents include the Statue of Liberty and the original curvy Coca-Cola bottle. A recent example of a design patent are emojis, protecting the look and appearance of the digital icons.

The terms for a design patent, as effective May 13, 2015, may last 15 years from the date of the patent grant. Prior to 2015, the term was 14 years. This provides small businesses with over a decade’s worth of patent protection.

Plant patents

One of the most unique small business patents is the plant patent. This patent may be granted to anyone that has invented, discovered or asexually reproduced a distinct, new variety of plant. Here are a few examples:

  • Cultivated sports
  • Mutants (this is only applicable if the mutant is discovered in a cultivated area)
  • Cultivated hybrids
  • Newly found seedlings
  • Algae and macro-fungi
  • Asexually propagated plants reproduced through means other than seeds, such as layering or budding.

Plants that would not be eligible for a plant patent include existing plants, such as roses, bacteria, and edible tuber reproduced plants like potatoes.

A plant patent’s terms are for 20 years from the date of the patent’s application filing. Similar to that of a utility patent, a plant patent may file a provisional or nonprovisional application. The inventor filing this application must be the same person that invented, or reproduced, the plant they wish to patent.

Applying for a patent

By now, you likely have a good idea as to which small business patent is best for your invention. The next step is to get ready to apply for a patent.

As you prepare to apply for a patent, keep in mind the following.

  1. What is your application strategy? You may choose to file as yourself (Pro Se) or work with a patent attorney or agent.
  2. Will you file a provisional or nonprovisional application? This may be contingent on the type of small business patent you are filing.
  3. Do you have enough money set aside for fees? There are several fees associated with filing a patent, including application fees, search fees, examination fees and issues fees.
  4. How soon do you need the patent? You may consider expedited examination options to file for and receive patent approval sooner.
  5. Do I have everything I need for my application? Your patent application materials may require an oath or declaration, drawings and additional written documents. Make sure you understand each required part necessary for obtaining your patent and include it with your application.
  6. Will I mail my application or submit it online? Double-check everything prior to making this last step to ensure your application is complete. Remember that once your application has been filed with the USPTO, you will not be able to add new items to it.

Patent approval and next steps

If your patent is approved, congratulations! You will receive notice of approval and a patent grant that is mailed to you.

After receiving your small business patent, make sure to maintain the patent over the years. Pay any maintenance fees on time to ensure it does not expire and check the status as needed for this valuable piece of intellectual property.

Source: Score.org

 

Wedding planning, driving and potentially more music: What’s next for Britney Spears post-conservatorship
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Britney spears smiling at camera. She is no longer in a conservatorship

By , Yahoo! Entertainment

Britney Spears has spent the last three days blissfully happy following the termination of her 13-year legal conservatorship.

“What an amazing weekend … I felt like I was on cloud 9 the whole time !!!” Spears wrote Monday on Instagram. “I actually got my first glass of champagne at the most beautiful restaurant I’ve ever seen last night !!!! I’m celebrating my freedom and my B day for the next two months !!!!!!!!!!! I mean after 13 years … I think I’ve waited long ENOUGH !!!! I’m so happy my lawyer Mathew Rosengart came into my life when he did … he has truly turned my life around … I’m forever thankful for that !!!! What a sight seeing so many people celebrating my victory …. I love my fans so much … so thank you !!!!⁣”

Spears has a lot of famous fans cheering her on, too, including Lady Gaga, Dionne Warwick, Jameela Jamil and Andy Cohen.

So what’s next for the superstar now that she’s free? As her lawyer said immediately after Judge Brenda Penny made her ruling in a Los Angeles courthouse, “What’s next for Britney, and this is the first time this could be said for about a decade, is up to one person: Britney.”

Here are a few things we know are on the horizon:

Planning her wedding
When Spears gave a shocking testimony in court in June, she flat-out said that she would like to “get married and have a baby.” And she’s moving ahead on that front.

She and Sam Asghari, the personal trainer and actor she has dated for four years, announced their engagement in September, less than a week after her father, Jamie Spears, filed a petition to end her conservatorship. “She would love a beach ceremony at a tropical destination,” a source told People at the time. “It will be a small wedding.”

Then, just last week, Spears said that designer Donatella Versace — a longtime friend — is already making the bridal dress.

On the family front, Spears had said in court that she had been forced to use birth control, but that obviously won’t be the case any longer.

Making her own medical decisions
Speaking of, Spears will also no longer have to take anything she doesn’t want to take, and that includes the antidepressant lithium. The singer said in a June hearing that it made her feel “drunk” and unable to have a conversation. But no more.

Harry Nelson, the founder and managing partner of Los Angeles-based law firm Nelson Hardiman, tells Yahoo Entertainment that, without a conservatorship over her person, Spears is free to make all her own health choices.

Driving whenever and wherever she wants
Spears was reportedly thrilled to be driving again, once her conservatorship allowed her to do so, over the summer, for the first time in years. (MTV’s 2008 For the Record documentary on Spears, filmed at the start of the conservatorship, contained a scene that showed her explaining that the last time she had felt free was when she had gotten to drive her car a lot.) So, of course, she spent her first free weekend cruising around by herself, too. According to TMZ, at one point, Spears drove her Mercedes to Catch restaurant in West Hollywood, where she had a date with Asghari.

That goes for shopping, too
Remember in July when Spears wrote about having splurged for new sneakers? Spears controls her own finances now, so she can look forward to as many new kicks as she’d like. Spears’s considerable assets are now being transferred from the conservatorship into a trust that she controls.

Nelson explains: “A trust is a highly flexible legal structure set up by a person to protect property assets. In setting up a trust, Britney can decide who the trustees of the trust, who will manage the trust, are, and who the beneficiaries will be. She can name herself as a trustee and a beneficiary, designate other trustees or beneficiaries, and change trustees and beneficiaries over time. She can set up the rules by which the trust is managed. Absent some dispute between trustees or beneficiaries, the trust is easy to manage. This is in sharp contrast to conservatorship, which is governed by the court and cannot be set up, amended, or removed without court approval. Conservatorships are only necessary when the person who is the subject won’t cooperate and is putting themselves at risk. The trust structure will allow Britney to protect herself, her children, and other loved ones, with the flexibility to make the structure work for her needs.”

Click here to read the whole article on Yahoo! Entertainment

Rebel Wilson Says She ‘Never Thought’ She ‘Could Overcome’ Emotional Eating
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Rebel Wilson wearing a blue velvet blazer while smiling at the camera

By Nicholas Rice, People

Rebel Wilson is looking back at how far she’s come after her recent weight loss.

While chatting with PEOPLE, the 41-year-old actress opened up about the feelings she experienced during her self-imposed “year of health” in 2020. “One of the emotions was that I’m sad I didn’t do it before,” she tells PEOPLE exclusively.

“Last year, I lost a lot of weight — close to 80 lbs. — and then I’ve maintained it for this year. [So] part of me was like, ‘Well, damn! If I could have done it before, should I have done it?'” she continues. “And I felt a bit sad about that point.”

Wilson said that it was partly do to a lack of faith in herself.

“I thought I was the person that [would] never do it,” she says. “Like, yeah, I can lose a few pounds if I try really hard one week and be really strict with myself, but then I’ll always gain it back. So I never thought that I could successfully do it.”

“Last year, I — for the first time ever — prioritized my health,” she continues. “And even though that was my 40th year, I was just like, it’s never too late to improve yourself or to improve your health.”

“I shouldn’t feel sad or beat up on myself because of that. I should just feel proud of myself for actually doing it,” Wilson adds.

Still, the Isn’t It Romantic star says she has “always been a very confident person,” and it’s not as though her weight loss has made her that way. “But you do feel better in yourself,” she explains.

“I’m not perfect, like, I still emotionally eat at times, there’s stressful things that still go on in my life and in my work that can be high pressure, … but I’m not perfect. I’ve [just] learned to manage things.”

Click here to read the full article on People.

Kate Hudson Shares How Fitness Fuels her Mental Health: ‘If I’m not active, if I’m not moving, I don’t feel good at all’
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Kate Hudson from the shoulders up, looking into the distance

By Kaitlin Reilly

There are many words to describe Kate Hudson — she’s an actress, a mom, a podcaster and a brand founder — but perhaps the most fitting word at the moment is simply busy.

After all, Hudson — most recently seen in the juicy Apple TV+ series Truth Be Told — has a very big life. The daughter of Goldie Hawn and stepfather Kurt Russell balances spending time with her tight-knit family with her many projects, but when she does have a free moment, it’s rarely to sit still.

As Hudson tells Yahoo Life, she craves movement, be that a dancing session in her bathroom or a gravity-defying workout routine.

That’s why she needs a diet plan that works for her — which is what WW, the brand she’s been an ambassador for since 2018, can provide, thanks to its recently launched system of PersonalPoints. The program, which Hudson says helped her find balance, includes activity targets — ideal for someone like Hudson, who calls herself a “frustrated athlete.”

Here, Hudson explains what wellness means to her, and why sometimes a girls’ night out is better self-care than anything else.

You became a WW ambassador in 2018. What made you interested in partnering with the company?

Mindy [Grossman], the CEO of WW, came to me. My mom had done it before when she was pregnant, but I hadn’t really done it before. Mindy said, “Try it, and get back to me.” So I did, and I was like, “How do people not know what this is?”

First of all, I lost weight immediately, which is what everyone who is looking into this initially wants to do. But what I loved about it was how supportive the program was, and how thorough it is. For me, it just felt like, what a great partnership. People are always asking me, “What can I do?” And if you weren’t raised with the tools, it’s hard. You don’t know the best way for you to get strong, whether that’s mentally or physically. I just fell in love with the program and the science behind it and how well it works. I’ve been doing the partnership for years and I continue to use it. It just works.

How did your family help you embrace a healthy lifestyle?

When you grow up with actors for parents, it’s a very disciplined craft, especially if you’re an actor who really cares about what you’re doing, like my parents. I watched them be almost like athletes preparing for their roles. Whether it be how active they were, whatever the role entailed, they had to physically and mentally prepare for those things. When you see parents really care about their health and doing things right, it becomes what you know.

I feel really lucky that I have a supportive family through the ups and downs of life. Not everyone has a family as close and connected as we are, and that’s a huge part of my overall wellness. I think mostly, my mom and my dad have always loved being active. That was the biggest thing for me. More so than food — we love our food, we love our cocktails and we enjoy all aspects of life. But we’re very active, and that’s what keeps our mental health really stable. That’s why I love WW, because they encourage the fit points. They want you to stay active. It’s about your sleep, your fitness — it’s motivating you to take care of those things.

Your brother, Oliver Hudson, opened up about his own battle with anxiety for The Unwind. What was your reaction to him being so open about his struggles?

I really admire him for his openness on the subject. I think people sit with anxiety and they don’t talk about it, and it’s so common. We’re living in a time that’s exasperating anxiety. We’re living in an anxious time that’s really affecting people, especially young people. I notice it with my son, and the young people around him. I admire that Oliver is like, “Hey, this is what’s happening, and this is what I’m doing about it.” It makes people feel like they can go get help. They can have a sense of humor about it.

Oliver has really hardcore panic attacks, and I think the thing that you learn is that you need a holistic approach to anxiety. If you need medication, it’s going to a doctor and seeing a professional for guidance. There’s also activity, what you eat. It’s a huge part of how our brain functions, and how it can function, for better or worse. Food is what speaks to the rest of our system. If we’re not putting good things into our body, our body is going to shut down. All of these things matter. Turning off your phone, doing a digital cleanse. I think we should be doing that more. Getting off social media. Taking those breaks are really important. Remembering to look up and connect is a huge part of our mental health.

Click here to read the full article from Yahoo News 

Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

Meet The First 2 Black Women To Be Inducted Into The National Inventors Hall Of Fame
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Engineer Marian Croak (left) and ophthalmologist Patricia Bath are the first Black women to be inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in its nearly 50-year history.

By , NPR

The National Inventors Hall of Fame has been around for nearly five decades but hasn’t included any Black women in its ranks — until now.

Engineer Marian Croak and the late ophthalmologist Patricia Bath will make history as part of the next cohort of inductees, the nonprofit announced this past week. They are the first Black female inventors to receive this honor, which has been bestowed on some 600 other innovators both living and dead.

A spokesperson told NPR over email that there are 48 female inductees and 30 Black inductees in the National Inventors Hall of Fame (NIHF).

“Innovation drives the worldwide economy forward and improves our quality of life. This is especially apparent given what we have experienced over the past 18 months,” Michael Oister, the NIHF’s CEO, said in a statement. “It’s why at the National Inventors Hall of Fame we are privileged to honor our country’s most significant inventors, who are giving the next generation the inspiration to innovate, create, and solve current and future problems.”

Croak and Bath are among the seven honorees announced this month and will join the 22 others announced last year as the hall of fame’s Class of 2022. All 29 will be celebrated and inducted at back-to-back ceremonies in Alexandria, Va., and Washington, D.C., in early May.

Here’s what you need to know about these trailblazers.

Bath was a pioneering ophthalmologist whose work reshaped cataract surgery
Bath, who died in 2019 at age 76, was no stranger to making history.

She is recognized as the first Black female physician to receive a medical patent, according to the NIHF, the first Black woman to complete a residency in ophthalmology at New York University and the first woman to chair an ophthalmology residency program in the U.S. (the King-Drew-UCLA Ophthalmology Residency Program), to name just a few of her accolades.

Bath invented laserphaco, a minimally invasive device and technique that performs all steps of cataract removal, from making the incision to destroying the lens to vacuuming out the fractured pieces.

According to Bath’s National Inventors Hall of Fame biography, she came up with the idea in 1981, published her first paper in 1987 and received her first U.S. patent for the device in 1988. It was being used in Europe and Asia by 2000.

“Bath’s method employed a faster technique and established the foundation for eye surgeons to use lasers to restore or improve vision for millions of patients suffering from cataracts worldwide,” reads a news release.

Bath received five patents over the course of her career. She also advocated for using public health approaches to eradicate preventable blindness, especially among racial minorities.

When she was a young intern spending time at both Harlem Hospital and Columbia University, she noticed that half the patients at Harlem’s eye clinic were blind or visually impaired, while at Columbia’s eye clinic, very few were. She studied this and concluded that the high rate of blindness among Black people was because of a lack of access to ophthalmic care, her biography at the National Library of Medicine notes.

In 1976, she proposed the discipline of community ophthalmology, which combines public health, community medicine and clinical and day care programs to provide eye care to underserved populations.

She co-founded the American Institute for the Prevention of Blindness as well as the Ophthalmic Assistant Training Program at UCLA, whose graduates have worked on blindness prevention.

“To know that my mother is part of the 2022 class of National Inventors Hall of Fame Inductees is an unbelievable honor,” her daughter, Dr. Eraka Bath, said in a statement, saying the hall of fame distinction is “an overdue recognition” of her mother’s accomplishments.

Click here to read the full article on NPR.

Fad diets are out. It’s your lifestyle habits that matter
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Building healthy, long-term habits is key for a heart-healthy diet.

By Sherry Liang, CNN

A full belly makes a happy heart, but your heart will be happier if you focus on sustaining long-term habits.

Heart-healthy eating starts with your eating patterns, according to the American Heart Association’s recent scientific statement, “2021 Dietary Guidance to Improve Cardiovascular Health.”

That doesn’t mean giving up takeout or that five-minute meal kit from the grocery store altogether. The dietary guidance encourages people to adapt these habits into their lifestyle.

The statement identifies 10 features of heart-healthy eating patterns — including guidance to combine a balanced diet with exercise; consume most nutrients through food over supplements; eat whole grains; reduce sodium, added sugar and alcohol intake; use non-tropical plant oils; and eat minimally processed, over ultra-processed, foods.

“What’s really important now is that people make modifications that can be sustainable in the long term,” said Alice Lichtenstein, director of Tufts University’s Cardiovascular Nutrition Laboratory and chair of the writing group for the AHA’s new statement.

The statement’s writing group evaluated literature and devised 10 features of heart-healthy dietary patterns. The group also expanded on the guidance, recognizing the need for sustainability and societal challenges that can be obstacles to achieving proper nutrition.

Lichtenstein said eating behaviors have changed since the AHA last published a statement with dietary guidance 15 years ago. Previously, the main options were to eat out or dine in, but eating habits have been less consistent in recent years. There has been a trend — exacerbated by the pandemic — of more convenience food options, such as delivery, meal kits and premade meals.

Make changes that go the distance
The focus of the AHA’s new guidance, Lichtenstein said, is to do what works for you, whatever dietary restrictions or cultural adaptions you want to make. Lichtenstein discourages people from making drastic changes based on fad diets — instead, sustained efforts in incorporating these healthy habits can be more beneficial in the long run.

Lauri Wright, chair of the department of nutrition and dietetics at the University of North Florida and national spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, seconds this long-term mindset. Wright, who was not involved with the AHA’s statement, emphasized the focus on building lifestyle habits, regardless of people’s ages and backgrounds.

“When we’re talking pattern or a lifestyle, we’re not just talking about a diet — something temporary,” Wright said. “This is really a lifestyle, and it really can accommodate all of your individualities.”

Click here to read the full article on CNN.

Be The Change: Lessons From A Woman In Business (For Other Women In Business)
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Be The Change: Lessons From A Woman In Business (For Other Women In Business)

By , Entrepreneur

The need to break the glass ceiling has existed for the past couple of centuries, and women have been fighting long and hard for that big moment. Available statistics suggest that 36% of small businesses worldwide are owned by women. People ask me about what it’s like being a woman in business at my age, and I always have the same answer:

“It’s difficult, there are challenges, but you push through.” My challenges, of course, pale in comparison to the million others who don’t have the environment, access, or support that I have had. However, we often hear the words that it’s difficult, but I think it’s important that we take the time to break it down. I am a highly solution-focused person, for better and for worse, and so, I would like to plug in some guidance to all those navigating similar experiences.

LESSON 1: PROTECTION VERSUS ENCOURAGEMENT

Yes, everyone is familiar with the savior complex, but it gets so much worse in the world of business. I want to say this gets better as you get older, but I have seen it happen to my colleagues with 20 and 30 years of experience as well. The assumption that we, as women in business, are naïve, standing like deer-in-the-headlights, is a real stereotype that we find ourselves fighting against more often than not.

Getting advice from those more experienced than you can be useful; however, it is essential that you question the intention of that advice. Is the intention one of protection, fear of your inability to succeed, or for your safety? Here is what I am going to say: you know your work better than anyone. Trust your own instincts and critical analysis. For instance, when we at Mirai Partners were entering Lagos as a new location for our business, most people gave us incredibly discouraging advice. We thought differently, and here we are, three years later, with state-level contracts and further expansion planned over the next three years.

LESSON 2: BREAKING INTO THE BOYS CLUB

Do I feel entirely comfortable going for a meeting or networking at events after work hours or outside a conference? The real answer is no, but I have done it many times, because when you own your own business, you have to. A 2019 survey revealed that out of 600 female entrepreneurs, nearly 56% had experienced some form of discrimination or harassment in their capacity as business owners. As such, the reason many women do not feel comfortable with gatherings associated with work is that we fear that men in those spaces will behave in a way that we don’t expect or want. However, as someone who’s had her own share of such odd experiences, I do have a set of ground rules to prevent such occurrences in the future, which might help you as well:

– If you are not meeting someone in their office, try and pick a neutral and public place.

– If they make you feel uncomfortable, no business opportunity is worth it.

– Personal questions about your relationship status shouldn’t be asked, so don’t be afraid to not answer.

Click here to read the full article on Entrepreneur.

Celebrity Chefs Share Favorite Holiday Meal Recipes
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female and male chef standing side by side with aprons on smiling

While many people have family favorite holiday recipes that they turn to each year, there are others who want to try something new. Whether they are adding it to their traditional dishes or creating a new holiday dining experience, it’s something people can have fun with. Having tried-and-true family recipes that are easy and pleasing is the key to pulling it off.

“This is the time of the year when people have holiday meal gatherings and spend more time dining with others,” explains Seema Sanghavi, founder of Cooks Who Feed. “Being able to try new recipes is always exciting and something for everyone to look forward to.”

To help make this holiday dining experience tastier, the celebrity chefs who have partnered with Cooks Who Feed are offering one of their favorite family holiday recipes. This gives people a chance to consider some new items, but they can trust in the fact that they are recipes that will turn out great and leave people wanting seconds.

The celebrity chef holiday recipes that people won’t want to miss this season include:

  • Art Smith. The executive chef and co-owner of several restaurants who coordinates and cooks for special events all around the world. Chef Art shares his recipe for Hummingbird Cake, which is one of Oprah’s favorites and is sold at his Disney Springs restaurant.
  • Christine Cushing. An award-winning chef with TV shows broadcast around the globe, and a line of tomato sauces in Ontario, Canada. Chef Christine shares her family’s recipe for a Greek version of lasagna.
  • Devan RajkumarHaving honed his skills under celebrated chefs, he also provides high-end catering, and he became a regular guest on Canada’s hit show “Cityline.”Chef Devan shares his favorite recipe for chai-spiced holiday eggnog.
  • Chef Romain Avril. Best known for his appearances as a judge on “Top Chef Canada All-Stars,”he’s a Michelin-rated chef who is a frequent guest chef on television shows. Chef Romainshares a recipe for his favorite way to use up leftover turkey, which will help reduce food waste.
  • Seema Sanghavi. Founder the Cooks Who Feed nonprofit organization, she also has a passion for cooking and great food. She shares her favorite recipe for traditional chicken curry, which is sure to please.

“Dining is something that brings people together and creates lasting memories,” added Sanghavi. “When you have great dishes, you are bound to help make those meals even better. We hope people will find at least one recipe they would like to try this season.”

Cooks Who Feed is an organization on a mission to help feed those in need around the world. The organization has teamed up with celebrity chefs to design aprons for adults and kids. For each apron sold, 100 meals are provided to those in need. Thus far, the nonprofit has provided over 300,000 meals to hungry people around the world. They have a goal of reaching 500,000 meals by the end of 2021.

Each of the aprons offered are environmentally friendly, handmade through fair trade practices, and are sustainable. The apron for kids matches those made for adults. Every time an apron is sold, food waste is rescued and 100 meals are provided to those in need. The company does this by sharing its profits with its charity partners around the globe that rescue surplus food to reduce food waste and provide hunger relief.

Cooks Who Feed has launched a new part of their line of aprons, which are ones for kids. The new aprons come in three color combinations and two sizes, fitting ages 3-12. They are 100% 9oz cotton canvas, available in one size that fits ages 3-7 and one for ages 8-12. The aprons feature an adjustable neck strap, reinforced stress points, one double pocket below the waist, and a chest pocket. To see the aprons for children, visit the site: https://cookswhofeed.com/collections/child-aprons .

The company offers individual sales online, a retail line, and wholesale/corporate gifting options. The aprons are produced ethically in Dehli, India, where 40 women are employed to make them by hand. To get more information or help support the mission, visit the site at: https://cookswhofeed.com.

About Cooks Who Feed

Cooks Who Feed was founded by Seema Sanghavi, who has an advanced degree in marketing and strategic management, and over 12 years of experience in online marketing and product management. She has lived in several countries around the world and is an amateur chef. The company works with charity partners in India, Canada, and the U.S. to rescue food and serve it to those in need. To get more information, visit the site at: https://cookswhofeed.com.

Afro hair comb inventor hopes to inspire young black women
LinkedIn
Afro comb designer would have "loved to be taught by a black woman"

By Felicity Evans, BBC

A woman launching an innovative new comb for afro hair wants to use her experience to get other young black women into engineering.

“I would have loved a young me to have been taught by a black woman,” said Swansea-based Youmna Mouhamad. She received an enterprise fellowship from the Royal Academy of Engineering to help her develop the product. Fewer than 2% of engineers are women from ethnic minorities.

“I want to be part of the change, so that a young person that comes after me is in a place where they feel much more heard and much more accepted,” said Youmna. She was doing a PhD in physics when she first got the idea for the Nyfasi Deluxe Detangler, which provides an easier way of conditioning natural afro hair.

Youmna supported her studies by working as a nanny and the little girl she looked after used to cry with pain when her hair was washed and conditioned.”The whole house would be full of tears,” she remembers. “I wanted her to have a better experience.

“I shifted to engineering because I always had a desire to work on things that I can touch with my hands, and I love the process of taking an idea and actually creating something.” Once Youmna had developed a prototype she looked for women with afro hair to join a focus group to test it. Lenient and her nine-year-old daughter, Goodness, were among the volunteers. “I have got three girls and I do their hair myself,” said Lenient.

“The washing process is dreadful because they don’t want to. Why? Because it’s quite painful for them, especially the combing part.” “And this detangler, the first time I tried it, it was really easy.” Goodness agreed, adding: “The normal comb feels like someone is pulling your hair, when it’s tangled it hurts. But with this comb, it’s very soft and easy to untangle.”

Click here to read the full article on BBC.

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Upcoming Events

  1. City Career Fair
    January 19, 2022 - November 4, 2022
  2. NAWBO Leadership Academy – Winter 2022
    January 31, 2022
  3. The Small Business Expo–Multiple Event Dates
    February 17, 2022 - December 1, 2022
  4. CSUN Center on Disabilities 2022 Conference
    March 13, 2022 - March 18, 2022
  5. WiCyS 2022 Conference
    March 17, 2022 - March 19, 2022