Entrepreneurs are known for being ambitious go-getters but the flip side of this are often feelings of humility and gratitude.  These feelings reflect that life as a business founder isn’t always fun and easy. Entrepreneurs know how hard it can be to get a business off the ground. They know how hard you have to struggle to get past other people’s negativity and doubts. All of us have had to overcome disappointments, unnerving challenges and seemingly unsolvable problems.

Last November Colliders Accelerator, The Alliance of Women Entrepreneurs (AWE), in conjunction with the University City Science Center, Robin Hood Ventures and Techgirlz, were selected as the steering committee for the Philadelphia Region “InnovateHER Competition”.  InnovaterHER Challenge is a national prize competition run by the SBA for The White House aimed at unearthing products and services that have a positive impact the lives of women and families through local business competitions (like ours in Philadelphia).

With limited time to co-ordinate such an event our small group of volunteers saw this program as a way to show our gratitude and as a way to try and help local PA companies receive press, investor and partner exposure.  In parallel our goal was to test the InnovateHER Challenge process in order to learn how to run this more efficiently in future years.  We knew that with limited time our execution may not be perfect and we would make mistakes. However, for better or worse we made the decision it was better to try and help than wait for another year to try and attain a perfect implementation.

We were grateful to receive over forty amazing applications for just eight pitch places.  We wanted to help more than eight companies and so we worked on implementing additional new features:
(1)   The first was that every company that applied would be given feedback on their application especially if they were not selected.
(2)   Secondly through the generosity of AWE we provided video footage of each presentation.  This allowed us to add of four more companies on stage, presenting a one minute pitch.

The videos from the event are available HERE.

We hope that the companies who participated in the project found it valuable and helpful to the development of their businesses. This will make all our efforts on this project worthwhile.

What are you grateful for this week?

As a reminder – Photos from InnovateHER can be found here and videos from InnovateHER can be found here.

joanne smiling in rain