• Where are the Women in Science?

    Marie Curie was the first person ever to be awarded two Nobel prizes, and the first female to win one. That was 100 years ago.

    Where are we now? She still holds the record. No other female has multiple Nobel prizes. In fact, only 40 women in total have been awarded the Nobel Prize between 1901 and 2009. 773 males have been awarded.

    Last time I wrote about the importance of educating the girls around the world. With my background, it was evident that females were the minority in the science field. One issue that still pervades higher education is the scarcity of women in the STEM fields- science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Just before Christmas, the UK government was congratulating themselves on protecting science, while quietly ending the funding to the UK Resource Centre for Women in Science Engineering and Technology. Why the lack of progress in this particular area? There is no clear answer, but there are efforts by several organizations to improve these statistics. It is not that girls and women lack the ability to study math and science, or are incapable or being business-minded. It has more to do with the lack of confidence girls and women feel in their own abilities, an issue that may be perpetuated by the cultural ethos.

    What about boys?
    Yes males are half of the global population, but some of the major challenges in attaining proper education are unique to girls and women. Pregnancy, societal restrictions, early marriage are all issues that may prevent a girl from continuing her education. This is a centuries-old problem that requires a modern solution.
    Together, as a global society, we can make a change for the better. Invest in a girl and she will ensure a brighter future for herself and her community.

  • Think local – Develop Deep Ties Within Your Local Community

    Many spas, treatment centers and salons that have survived, and in some cases thrived, during a tough economy cite deep ties within their local community and their loyal client relationships as being their life raft during harsh times. When you consider the “Locavore” trend and that people don’t generally want to travel outside a 3-5 mile radius, it makes sense to focus your marketing efforts and loyalty programs close to home. Plan you calendar for 2011 by plotting out those events that focus on supporting your community like local fairs, police or fire service appreciation, school fundraisers, clothing/food drives and building community gardens.

    Business tip: Focus new client campaigns on your immediate neighborhood, and make sure your personal story and heritage are clear on all marketing pieces. Post any relevant pictures to your Facebook page and website so a potential new client can see how you support the community. Partner with businesses on your street, volunteer to be a guest speaker at local high schools on an important topic like teen acne and donate service or products for local fundraisers. Network! Before you know it you’ll become the town mayor!

    View our upcoming Guest Speaker Events to learn more biz tips, and who knows, maybe I’ll have the chance to meet you on the road!

  • Girls are the Gateway to Societal Success

    Over the past decade, research has been reflecting this statement despite the lack of data on girls in the developing world. If she stays in school, remains healthy, and gains skills, she will marry later, have fewer and healthier children, and earn an income that she’ll invest back into her family (United Nations Population Fund, State of World Population 1990). Compared to her male counterparts who invest about a third of their income back into their families, she will invest 90% (Chris Fortson, “Women’s Rights Vital for Developing World,” Yale News Daily 2003). Currently there are about 600 million adolescent girls throughout the developing world. And they are the future.

    To ensure success within an environment that does not necessarily foster female progress in the business or political sector, it is important to allow these girls to gain proper education and skills that will allow her to have a bright future. The power of education really is evident in society. It gives children the confidence to visualize success in their future. It allows the mind to wonder and investigate, allowing for creativity. Higher education, be it in a trade, vocation or academia, has been proven to be a measure of success later in life.

    January is national mentoring month. I believe people, and maybe females in particular, benefit greatly from one-on-one educational interactions. We have all benefitted from a great teacher or mentor, so why not do something valuable for others? Getting involved in your community can be more rewarding than you may imagine!
    To learn more about adolescent girl education read a report here

  • Philanthropy – Giving Back and Paying Forward

    Start out the New Year right by finally making a resolution to give back through your business. Review which non-profits or charities most resonate with you, and make a commitment to who you will help in 2011. You’ll not only feel good, but your staff will be more motivated – studies show that 89% of employees have a higher sense of loyalty to their employer when the business gives back! The additional upside is that partnering with a cause also helps to grow the business, as the consumer is more likely to come to you or buy from you if you give back. Additional studies show that 83% of customers will actually switch to a brand or company that supports a cause, and 64% will also be more likely to promote your business. That’s a pretty good start for 2011!

    Business tip: Run an event to launch your new charitable endeavor to your clients, neighbors and partners. Make it easy for attendees to give back through “embedded generosity” by donating a percentage of product purchases or treatments to your chosen cause. Also, partner with your selected organization and invite their local supporters to attract new clients to your business!

    And PS, have you heard of FITE? This may be just the solution for how your business can support a cause by giving women a “hand up”, and further your business goals! Learn More Now!