Month: November 2011

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Startup Weekend Pitch Deck Advice From A VC: Can You Answer These Five Questions?

By Steph Palmeri (Senior Associate, SoftTech VC) Last Sunday, I spend the afternoon meeting and mentoring several of the Women 2.0 Startup Weekend teams.

As an early stage investor at SoftTech VC, I see hundreds of ideas a month so it seemed fitting that I would be spending time with the teams just as many were diving in to construct and perfect their final Startup Weekend pitches for the judges. Their FIVE MINUTE pitches.

Damn. Five minutes goes pretty quick. And after you’ve spent the last 48 hours laser-focused on an idea, five minutes goes faster then a talented VP of Engineering looking for a new gig.

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Serial Entrepreneur Patricia Araque Creates Meaningful EduTech Startups In Spain

By Patricia Araque (Co-Founder, Ellas 2.0) Editor's note: Patricia Araque is co-hosting Founder Friday Barcelona on December 2, 2011. FREE RSVP for Founder Friday here.

When I was a kid, I used to play to run my own school and write lists of imaginary students. I spent my time between papers and books and toy phones, imagining that I helped children find their paths.

Then I grew up and suddenly forgot my dreams. I chose to study advertising and public relations in college. There were hard years, mostly because I discovered that everything

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Hot Topic on Reddit: XX Chromosome Equals Lower Pay

By Angie Chang (Co-Founder & Editor-in-Chief, Women 2.0) How's this for an opening line: "I work for a large multinational tech company, I regularly hire woman for 65% to 75% of what males make. I am sick of it, here is why it happens, and how you can avoid it."

The hot topic on Reddit this week:

Today I finished interviewing my third new hire this month, two of which are women. They both are getting paid substantially less than the man I hired earlier this month, and to be honest I am getting tired of that. I don't set the wages, I just handle negotiations

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How To Be The Next Marissa Mayer (A Great Product Manager)

By Mollie Vandor (Product Manager, BetterWorks) Think of building a website like building a house.

There’s the engineers, who are akin to construction workers, actually putting the nuts and bolts of the structure together. The site’s designers are like decorators, making sure the house looks and feels put together and polished. And, the marketing team are the real estate agents, making sure the house attracts buyers -- or, users -- and driving up the house’s value as much as possible.

But, before any of that can happen, there has to be an architect. A person with the vision to plan the house out

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5 Tips To Starting Up: Award-Winning Entrepreneur Amy Buckner

By Amy Buckner (Co-Founder & CEO, AnswerLab) Editor's note: Amy Buckner was was one of 10 women honored to receive Ernst & Young’s 2011 Entrepreneurial Winning Women Award. Here is her advice for Women 2.0.

The road to building the most trusted brand in user experience research has been one of rapid growth accompanied by huge-payoff decisions along with a few blunders. I've learned some major entrepreneurial lessons over the past 6 years as the Co-Founder and CEO of AnswerLab. Reflecting on that experience, I compiled 5 tips for entrepreneurial women:

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How Do You Know That Your Startup Idea Good Enough?

By Rosina Samadani, Ph.D. (Founder, Truth on Call) Do you have great ideas but can't seem to realize your concept and get to launch? I’ve been there.

In fact, in some ways I'm there right now. For my product Truth On Call, the first text message based physician polling system, I strive for perfection. I try to over-deliver, it must be the absolute best it can be. I've learned to live with this perfectionism and the less perfect reality of the marketplace as I continue to develop my product in the live, post-launch world.

Is there a danger to this?

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Startup Business Founder Ellie Cachette On Why She’s An Entrepreneur

By Ellie Cachette (Founder & CEO, ConsumerBell) The community mourns the recent death of 22 year old entrepreneur Ilya Zhitomirskiy. Being a founder of a startup comes with massive pressure. Every story is different. What's important is that the community stays together and support each other. Below is a personal story with recognition to other founders. I never wanted to be a founder of a startup. In fact, I never even considered myself an "entrepreneur." While growing up, I had small projects to make money like helping my parents with their own projects for a fee (of course) or selling handmade bracelets for conferences. I had what most entrepreneurs have as indicators, small ways of hustling. I think I even had a lemonade stand once. To me, I was always curious, always trying to fill a need when I saw one.

It wasn't until later in my career when I was a IT Product Manager that one of my bosses, George Roth of Recognos called me an entrepreneur: "You get it, Ellie, one day you will have your own company." I thought he was crazy.

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TaskRabbit: Helping Women Build Companies Since 2008

By Leah Busque (Founder, TaskRabbit) Editor's note: You can nominate Leah Busque for the Founder of the Year 2011 thru December 13!

I recently read an article about the work/ life balance of successful women. In it, there was a stat about the percent of highly successful women who actually do their own grocery shopping. While the actual percentage escapes me, the number was extremely low. Not surprising! It's necessary (and a real skill) to acknowledge where your time is best spent and make conscious decisions to focus on those areas.

Time is our most limited resource and knowing how to maximize it is imperative. To achieve the highest productivity and well-being for you (and society as a whole), as

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Why Women Leaders Need Self-Confidence

By Leslie Pratch (Contributor, Harvard Business Review) On January 1, Virginia Rometty will become the first female CEO of International Business Machines Corp. Articles about her have lauded her ability to blend enthusiasm, charisma, clear communication, strategic thinking, and "cool-minded" decision making. But one New York Times story placed the emphasis on the role self-confidence may have played into her success:

Early in her career, Virginia M. Rometty, I.B.M.'s next chief executive, was offered a big job, but she felt she did not have enough experience. So she told the recruiter she needed time to think about it.

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Hiring A Designer For Your Startup: Beyond the Usual Suspects

By Christina A. Brodbeck (Co-Founder & CEO, theicebreak) Good engineers in Silicon Valley are hot. They’re hard to find, even harder to hire, and it often feels like they’re worth their weight in gold.

That being said, there exists an even more elusive hire in the startup world -- a good designer. Times have changed; users are more experienced, and more accustomed to using web sites and mobile apps. This has created a tipping point in site building, where form is often equally as important as function.

To keep up with this high demand for beautiful and intuitive sites, we’ve also created a demand for good designers.

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Breaking Your Own Glass Ceiling In Technology

Dwelling on numbers suggests dark forces at work keeping women down, whereas explanation may lie with women themselves. By Leah Eichler (Contributing Writer, Femme-O-Nomics)

Following the movements of C-suite women has become a spectator sport. When Former Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz received her now infamous phone call, professional women started counting the number of females they knew who still occupied the top ranks.

“Who is left in technology?” asked one panicked participant at a recent networking event for women in digital media. We almost need female CEO trading cards to keep track.

There’s good reason to follow the women

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Women in Business Challenge Invests In Female Entrepreneurs From Emerging Markets

By Cily Keizer (Co-Director, BiD Network Foundation) Editor's note: Learn more about the Women in Business Challenge and how you can participate here. The deadline for applications and the access to the coaching program is December 30, 2011. Completed business plans will be accepted until April 15, 2012.

Reports find that women's lives around the world have improved significantly but gaps between men and women remain in many areas, especially business ownership.

BiD Network created the Women in Business

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Hate Your Boss? Ask Yourself If Gender Bias is to Blame

By Joan C. Williams & Rachel Dempsey (Authors, The New Girls' Network) Once a year or so, a study or trend piece comes out about why women are bad to work for. Like Good Morning America's "Bad Female Boss? She May Have Queen Bee Syndrome" or The Daily Mail's "Men are the best bosses: Women at the top are just too moody (and it's women themselves who say so)" or Oprah Magazine's "When Good Women Make Bad Bosses."

And then there's popular culture: from "Working Girl" to "The Devil Wears Prada," the evil female boss is almost as tired a trope as the prostitute with a heart of gold.

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Partner Events: Upcoming Tech Cocktails In California and Arizona

By Jen Consalvo (Co-Founder & COO, Tech Cocktail) We are excited to be hosting Tech Cocktail mixers in California -- from San Francisco to Santa Monica and San Diego, these events showcase and connect the local technology scene.

Join us for an evening of fun mingling with other technology enthusiasts, investors, bloggers, and entrepreneurs as we showcase local technology companies and take a closer look at their latest achievements. Tech Cocktail could be the place where you meet your next employee, co-founder or even get a date.

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Words With Bears Wins Women 2.0 Startup Weekend 2011

By Judy Tuan (Participant, Women 2.0 Startup Weekend 2011) What do video games, language, bears, and #changetheratio have to do with each other?

The answer lies in this video. Here's the story of how an idea turned into the startup Words With Bears at Women 2.0 Startup Weekend.

I'd never been to a Startup Weekend or even to a local entrepreneurship event before, but Women Who Code organizer Sasha Laundy encouraged me to sign up.

The day before Startup Weekend officially began, I went

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