Added: Jenice Durgin - Date: 31.01.2022 00:39 - Views: 39939 - Clicks: 9908
In the pool of privately held small businesses in this country, being a woman business owner actually has many advantages. Most public corporations, as well as local, state, and federal government purchasing agencies, have programs for allotting a certain percentage of business to women-owned companies.
However, the certification process is not without its challenges, and owners often get discouraged during the process because they lack the proper guidance or misunderstand how the process works. Ownership is just a small part of the equation. A woman must also hold the highest position at the company and be active in daily management and the strategic direction of the company.
So, before moving forward, make sure that you have several ways of proving that you are leading the company, from doing the hiring and firing to any planning documents. In addition to being a majority owner, the woman must also be a U. If you are puzzled about the many types of certification, you are not alone. Much confusion exists, and to fully explain each is beyond the scope of this article. However, with just a short explanation, most people can determine which certification is probably right for them to pursue. Armed Forces and who has been disabled in action; and.
The U. Small Business Administration can be contacted regarding participation in the 8 a program, or to obtain the SDB certification as well as the DV certification. Third-party certification is geared to the private sector. If you are more interested in doing work in the private sector, particularly with large, publicly traded companies, WBE certification by a third-party certifier is recommended.
There is a long list of documents that you will need to get together for your application. If you think that getting certified is something that you will eventually want to do, it is wise to start putting aside the necessary documents and paperwork as early as possible. of the site visit are sent to the review committee. If the application has been denied certification, a letter is sent stating the reasons and stating the appeal process; and.
However, the process is a relatively simple one after the initial certification, especially if there have been no ownership changes. The best way to get word out that you are certified is to contact local, state, and national certification agencies and ask to get put on their mailing list. Additionally, mention that you are a certified women-owned enterprise on your marketing and promotional materials, which is an easy way to let potential customers know about this important distinction.
Julie Pokela says it was already shaping up to be a busy summer for Market Street Research MSRthe firm she helped lay the groundwork for nearly 40 years ago. And then, some additional work start pouring in.
Funneled by the Wallace Foundation, started by the founders of Readers Digest, as part of an ongoing initiative concerning the arts, these projects involve several noted institutions — the Seattle Opera, the Pacific Northwest Ballet, and the New York-based Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater — that want some insight into how to grow their audiences.
A major focal point of these analyses will be the Millennial generation, members of which now statistically out the Baby Boomers, said Pokela, and remain a point of fascination — and mystery — for businesses across all sectors. Today, achieving that goal involves successfully marketing to and then serving several generations, each with distinct attitudes and preferences, said Pokela, adding that the Millennials are proving to be particularly challenging for many sectors.
While the company still serves both those sectors, its overall strength has been diversity, said Pokela, adding that this trait has enabled it to survive the many economic downturns over the past four decades. The business itself has also evolved.
Years ago, MSR employed those who would do the actual data collection for the research projects. Now, those services are outsourced, noted Pokela, adding that, while laying off dozens of employees constituted the most painful moment of her career, the resulting entity is smaller and more manageable, and enables her to spend the vast majority of her time doing what she likes most — research and interpreting what it means.
Tracing the history of her company, Pokela said the intriguing story began when she was pursuing her doctorate in communication at UMass Amherst, studying under, among others, Mihevc, who taught political communication. Given a boost by some work they did for the Center for Human Development in Springfield, which received a grant to conduct a telephone survey on community attitudes toward foster parenting, the pair enjoyed success early on, working mostly on political campaigns and projects for ad agencies.
Small Business Development Center and then-Director Merwin Tober for some assistance on how to position the company for growth and sustainability. Tober came up with the idea of generating a recurring form of income — or several of them — rather than being solely what amounted to a job shop. As that name suggests, the initiative surveyed area residents on a quarterly basis about their banking habits and preferences, said Pokela, adding that most all area banks bought the reports.
But, while bolstering its portfolio with banks, the company — which became known as Market Street Research in after Pokela and Mihevc parted ways and the former ed forces with Elizabeth Denny — was doing the same with the healthcare industry. This phenomenon has generated a steady source of revenue for the company ever since, she went on, noting that MSR has a of prominent hospitals in its portfolio, including Mass General, NYU Langone Medical Center, the Cleveland Clinic, Dartmouth Hitchcock, and many others. Most are steady, repeat customers that require in-depth marketing studies at least every two years, and often on a more frequent basis.
The nature of the work varies, but much of it comes down to two key issues in this sector and most all others — awareness and image. Overall, the company tailors its questions and surveys to meet the specific needs of clients and business sectors, and the ability to help companies in a host of industries has driven solid growth over the years and enabled MSR to weather the economic downturns in recent years. The firm has clients in healthcare, financial services, the nonprofit arena, governmental agencies, retail, technology, manufacturing, and, especially this summer, the arts, which Pokela has identified as a potential source of growth for MSR.
The company also works with private elementary and secondary schools and also public school systems and school boards, in matters ranging from attracting and retaining high-caliber students to communicating information and specific strengths to the community. In retail, meanwhile, the company has provided services for national chains, mom-and-pop stores, and entities that fall in between. The question is how to translate the passion exhibited by the people who are going, to the people who are not going. As for the answers to that question … the reports commissioned for those arts institutions should be completed by this fall, she went on, adding that there may be some answers there.
She believes it can continue to do so because, overall, it scores well in those areas for which it gauges for its many customers — awareness, quality of service, and image. And, especially, because it continues to raise and clear the bar in that one realm for which it was formed, a service that has become both an art and science: finding out. Cathy Crosky says women owners benefit from having a sounding board comprised of peers navigating similar issues and challenges.
Transitioning to membership in WPO is the unofficial, usually unannounced ambition of WomenUpFront members, said Cathy Crosky, an executive coach and organizational transformation consultant with Charter Oak consulting group in Williamstown who conceptualized and now le both organizations. She noted that statistics clearly show that more women are choosing entrepreneurship as a career path, and the Greater Springfield area is certainly no exception to this rule.
Like the Pittsfield WomenUpFront group, the one planned for Hampden County will be limited to first-stage companies — it is not intended for startups, said Crosky, adding that it is focused on business, not networking, although there is certainly some of the latter as well. For this issue and its focus on women in business, we take an in-depth look at the success achieved by WomenUpFront in Pittsfield, and how Crosky plans to make this concept more of a regional phenomenon.
Pam Sandler says women have to juggle their lives differently than men do, which le to unique challenges balancing business and other obligations. Almgren concurred. Crosky noted that, while some business groups have certainly enjoyed success with a mixed-gender format, the women-only structure of this group appeals to many because of the commonality of issues and a generally shared outlook on business and how to manage. Crosky announced her intentions to form a Pioneer Valley chapter of WomenUpFront in the spring, with the support of the Business Growth Center and PeoplesBank, which have offered to provide meeting space and other forms of assistance.
The task of making women aware of the organization and its benefits and convincing them to commit the requisite time and energy is ongoing. Overall, she believes expanding the concept across the Valley will help individual business owners meet their goals, but also benefit the region in its quest to encourage entreprebeurship and create jobs.
Jo-Ann Davis says her office will handle matters ranging from bond financing to mergers and acquisitions to labor negotiations — and much more. She agreed to take on that asment, but not long afterward came to the conclusion that she was at least as qualified for this position, if not more so, than the applicants she would be screening.
This is a multi-faceted position, she said, one that involves everything from labor contracts to real-estate matters; from regulatory compliance to litigation management. And it will continue to do so with the new general-counsel structure, although more matters will now be handled in house. Davis said the Baystate system has long considered adopting the general-counsel model — one used by most major corporations and health systems — and new President and CEO Mark Keroack, who took the helm 11 months ago, made it one of the priorities of his administration.
For this issue, BusinessWest talked at length with Davis about her new role and all that entails. At Skoler Abbott, she worked with a wide range of clients, developing strategies with regard to the many aspects of employment and labor-law matters, and representing them in federal and Massachusetts courts and before such bodies as the Equal Employment Opportunity Counsel EEOCthe Mass.
She came on board as director of Employee Relations inand became director of Human Resources Consulting and Employee relations inand vice president overseeing that department in In those latter roles, she built, developed, and managed the department, supervising six HR directors system-wide and leading a staff of She also handled the full gamut of employment and labor-related matters, including employment litigation in state and federal courts, before the EEOC, MCAD, and other bodies.
Indeed, Davis, who prevailed over a host of candidates from across the country, took on her new role in late March.
This will be an involved analysis, she continued, adding that she expects it will take several months to determine the size and character of her staff and fill those positions. Using the Hospital of the Future as an example, she said that huge project involved everything from bond financing to regulatory compliance matters to construction issues.
Outside counsel was used for each aspect of that initiative, but with the general-counsel model, many, though certainly not all, of these matters can be handled in house. That role represents a host of responsibilities, but a tremendous opportunity as well. Stacy Robison, left, and Xanthi Scrimgeour saw a need for clearer health information, and turned that need into a fast-growing, multi-faceted business. But six years after she and Xanthi Scrimgeour launched CommunicateHealth in Northampton, that gap is narrowing — as quickly as their company is growing.
I did a lot of work at the federal level. I was doing some policy work around health literacy, looking at how people understand health information. At the same time, data showed that people were increasingly struggling with health information at a time when society in general is shifting the burden, more than ever before, onto individuals to manage their health and seek relevant information.
There was clearly a business case for this. So, inthe two left their jobs and launched a startup business from their attic, with the goal of developing and rewriting health-information documents in a way that would be clear and engaging for all readers.
Meanwhile, a three-person operation six years ago now boasts a staff of 36 in Northampton and a second office in Rockville, Md. That rapid success might surprise Robison and Scrimgeour, but only to a point. After all, they knew the vast health-information industry had a need for professionals who could clean up and rede often-confusing communications.
And, obviously, it was a good business model. Robison has been rewriting poorly presented health information since her career working with federal public-health agencies, and that was initially the bread and butter of CommunicateHealth. But as the startup has grown, it has also expanded its scope of services, moving from a subcontracting role to that of a prime contractor.
So we would do that and hand it off to a deer, and it was out of our our hands. So she and Scrimgeour introduced a de element into the firm, starting with one graphic deer and boasting four today, and will typically handle both content and de. And the process of determining the direction of a project is one that sets CommunicateHealth apart. Once we get a prototype, we put it back in front of people.
Would you use an app like this? Part of that project involves creating web-based GIF animations to demonstrate what it means when a toddler has a wobbly gait or some other movement impairment. The company will also be handling some communications around upcoming dietary guidelines for Americans, which are updated every five years. We ended up with a simple app, all icon-based.
That was a fun project. She also gets plenty of input from editorial boards and educational review boards, who help ensure accuracy and consistent messaging, but even then, research gathered from the public can sway content. To private companies like health plans, clear communication can affect the bottom line as well, she added. The people who come to work here, come to work because of the mission. They ultimately care about the end product; they want to deliver high-quality products.
At the same time, she and Scrimgeour have also experimented with work-life arrangements inspired by Silicon Valley that fosters employee growth, autonomy, and satisfaction, including an unlimited time-off policy. There are a lot of traditional business models, but not a lot of people shaking it up.Lonely married women Bliznaky
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