Across the globe, more and more women are climbing to the top of the business world, and effecting significant positive change along the way.
Some have built on lifelong dreams, while some have founded organisations in reaction to struggles they or those around them have faced. Others have simply taken a good idea and run with it, finding success through tireless hard work and dedication.
It would be impossible to list them all, but here are a handful of truly inspiring women. These women have not only earnt significant success within their spheres, but have done so while constantly thinking about their impact on their communities, and the world in general. Truly great examples of female leadership in action!
In 2013, Jessi Baker became the co-founder of Provenance, an innovative tech startup built on a desire to improve market transparency. The London-based team uses blockchain technology to develop sophisticated traceability systems, which could be used to create digital histories for products and materials worldwide.
This allows consumers to see exactly where their goods have come from, and make informed ethical decisions regarding their purchases. In addition, using Provenance’s software platform enables online businesses to back up their sustainability and ethics assertions with substantiated evidence.
Baker’s long-term goal is an open traceability protocol, which could be used to by anyone to track any product back to its source.
After being captivated by beautiful Ecuadorian products on Etsy, where she began her entrepreneurial career, Denise Paredes was inspired to found Equal Uprise. This social enterprise uses a Shopify store to distribute goods handcrafted by rural artisans in Tunisia and Ecuador.
With her focus on creating an ethical and conscious production chain, Denise Paredes has since been able to launch a Business Development Fund as part of her enterprise. Sales help to fund improvements for each artisan’s business, while Equal Uprise also provides education funding for their children, and for the artisans themselves.
Marina Krim co-founded the Lulu & Leo Fund alongside her husband Kevin in 2012. The fund’s creative philosophy is built on principles which underpinned the family’s life before the loss of their children Lulu and Leo, whose memory the fund honours.
Their drive to inspire others to cope with grief and hardship has since led them to develop the Choose Creativity initiative: a curriculum founded on their 10 Principles of Creativity. Working with schools and communities, the initiative aims to support the development of creative confidence in children and adults, as a means of helping them face and move on from hardships.
Joan Murphy and Pip Black
Not one entrepreneurial woman, but two — co-founders of Frame, Pip Black and Joan Murphy first bonded over their passion for fitness, and a desire to make it easier for busy people to incorporate training into their lifestyle.
Their classes cover everything from meditation to barre, including a range of maternity classes, complete with advice on staying active safely during pregnancy. Their website also offers insights on lifestyle and diet, along with a helpful glossary of technical terms.
Both women advocate a positive approach to fitness, encouraging training in ways that suit individual lifestyles, timetables, and interests. With this in mind, they created the first fitness studio to have a fully pay-as-you-go option.
Now, with a team of over 100 instructors at four studios across London, they are showing no signs of slowing down. Two more studios, at Hammersmith and Fitzrovia, are due to open this year.
Abrima Erwiah and Rosario Dawson
Another duo, Rosario Dawson and Abrima Erwiah worked together in Uganda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, where they participated in initiatives focused on women’s rights and social empowerment.
Soon after, in 2013, they drew on their combined passion for ethical production chains, founded Studio One Eighty Nine, an enterprise that uses fashion as an agent of social change. Their products are sustainably sourced from artisans in West African communities, using traditional techniques which in many cases have been passed down through generations.
The overarching aim is to provide a platform upon which these artisans can promote and distribute their crafts globally. Meanwhile the organisation works to support education and skills training, create jobs, and empower individuals to develop their talents and pursue their creative visions.
These are just a few of the many women making their mark on the business world, but there are countless more, each of whom is a powerful reminder of the value of resourcefulness and dedication in achieving your goals, and being a force for positive change.
The road to success is rarely an easy one, but that is certainly no reason not to try it. Whether you are a budding entrepreneur, or a seasoned veteran of the business world, let these women inspire you to seize every opportunity, and shape your future according to your wishes. Find something you are passionate about, then give it your all, because someday it may be your success story that inspires the next generation of entrepreneurial women.
About the author
Victoria Greene: Content Marketer & Female Entrepreneur.
I love to work with brands and other entrepreneurs, helping them solve their content challenges and kickstart their businesses into high growth gear. Big advocate of storytelling (who isn’t!), and I love to kick back with my dogs when I’m not working on my dropshipping stores.