Women Entreprenur Series Conference

Last year my BFF and I opened a small business called Trata Threads. We had an awesome idea about making products that celebrate cultural identities. How many times have you walked into Babies R Us to see an endless variety of bibs, onesies and t-shirts talking about Auntie, and Grandma or Uncle? That’s all well and good for those people who use traditional American names for their relatives, but in my family, Auntie = Titi, Uncle = Tio, and Grandma = Abuelita, and there are names that are missing like Madrina (godmother) and Padrino (godfather).  One of the best part of this country is diversity, but we don’t see much of it in our stores. So we decided to do it ourselves.

The problem is that we don’t know the first thing about business.

Fortunately the State of NJ is trying to become business friendly. In these interests, they are hosting a series of conferences for Women Entrepreneurs. I missed the first one, but my bestie, and our friend at LJ Treasures in the Sand, carpooled to yesterday’s second in the series conference.

After exploring a few tables of vendors who are specific to helping small businesses obtain financing, we helped ourselves to some breakfast and met some interesting people. There was a representative, Josephine Ho, who was on the planning committee for this event and was also a member of the New Jersey Chinese American Chamber of Commerce. People were very friendly and interested in discussing the different businesses and ideas for businesses we all had.

The morning keynote speaker, Tracye McDaniel spoke about the efforts NJ is making to encourage businesses to set up shop in NJ, and bring jobs to our state. She stressed the importance of small businesses in helping our economy and closed with a few tips on how to stay motivated. She said “Motivation doesn’t last…but neither does bathing”, so we have to find ways to stay focused and motivated on our goals. She suggested changing your screen saver to an ima

ge that motivates you, whether it’s your business card, or even a business card/logo of a business that inspires you. Use a strategically placed white board to deliver daily affirmations to yourself. Finally, she said, Know your circle of influence.

This is an important one to remember, because whether we realize it or not technology has given us the opportunity to maintain contact with more people than ever.

Keynote speaker, Tracye McDaniel, talking about NJ’s efforts to encourage businesses and on staying motivated.

Use your social media tools for networking and help other people succeed. Every person you know is potential referral. With that in mind S, over at LJ Treasures in the Sand, created a facebook page to help Women in NJ achieve this goal. On the Women Entrepreneurs- NJ group page you can find women like you, who are starting out or trying to expand their small businesses. You can vent your frustrations, read informative articles, or use it as a venue to get your company out there. We hope to see you there soon.

For more information on the Women Entrepreneurs Series, click here.

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