Make Supporting Women Businesses Your Financial New Year’s Resolution!
Financial inclusion isn’t going to fund itself. It really is that simple.
If you buy the things in front of you, choose the best option from what you come across, you will disproportionately fund traditional businesses and under-fund women. Until the odds even out, we as consumers need to go out and find ways to spend our money that align with our values.
I am passionate about this because me and my business are the results of financial inclusion. I went to a state school (financially subsidized) and I own a venture capital firm that invests in 75% diverse founded teams. We have seen time and time again that diversity brings better businesses and that has affected how I manage my own money too, and our families’ money. You don’t have to be a venture capitalist to practice inclusive finance.
1. Your money is your vote
If you buy from a store, invest in a stock, or even have a retirement plan, the money you spend supports those companies and how they do business on a day-to-day basis. Do those companies have female leadership? Are those companies representative of your neighborhood? Are they helping the planet? Of the top 3,000 traded companies, only 25% have women on their boards at all (Ann Stych, Bizjournals from the Russell 3000).
There are not many publicly traded companies with a majority-female board. So, if we aren’t intentional about how we spend, we perpetuate the status quo.
Look at your Robinhood, ask your financial planner, or even look at where your groceries are coming from. All of these decisions are opportunities to include more people or support a small business that is led by women.
2. You will make more money investing in women.
The 25 largest IPO filings in 2020 were from companies where women held a minimum of 24% of the board seats (30 percent, coalition’s IPO report). The fact that diverse teams outperform is now proven by several studies and market cycles. If you seek out diverse teams, your portfolio will do better. We believe in this so much we built a company around it!
3. Our country thrives when we have more access.
Creating an inclusive economy benefits all of us, we all have more options, more opportunities, and at the bottom line – a better shot at our own version of the American Dream when we include everyone in our economy. Normalizing women owning businesses, running boards, and being in control of our own finances always feels far off, but it starts with you and me and all of us choosing to support female-owned businesses, from corporations to holiday fairs. By not giving half of our population access to returns and leadership, we are leaving trillions on the table that could be put to work.
Start a business, support a friend starting a business, or look at the board of the company where you work, are they representative of women? If not, ask to sit in, learn how decisions are made, and see if there’s an area where you can help to lift women up.
If we all do one of these things, the opportunity we can create for one another is amazing!
About the Author
Senofer Mendoza is Co-Founder and General Partner of Mendoza Ventures, a Boston based pre-seed Fintech, AI and Cybersecurity venture capital firm. After having a career in enterprise sales and hospitality design, she began Mendoza Ventures to address the growing funding gap in the pre-seed investment stage. The firm was launched in 2016 and invests internationally in the Cybersecurity, AI, and Fintech space. She is a published author, innovator, and thought leader and was recently a winner of the inspiring FinTech Females award in the Money Movers category.