Posted: Tue 31st Jan 2023
The Dell Women's Entrepreneur Network (DWEN) recently held its Powerhouse Summit, a virtual conference and networking event where renowned business founders, innovators, and industry leaders alike offer expert insights on financing, growth, leadership and technology as it relates to female entrepreneurship.
You can watch recordings from the summit at the Dell Women's Entrepreneurs Network (DWEN) website. For a flavour of what was talked about, we've provided a brief summary of the key points below.
Taking an initial idea to the breakthrough moment and driving innovation
How to lead innovation in your business: Find your strengths, what you're great at and what you love, and use that in your creativity and innovation.
Use technology to your advantage: Take the time to educate yourself on relevant tools and integrate them into your processes.
Be human: The most important innovation for businesses now is humanising brands: humans connect with humans, not with logos.
Hiring with innovation in mind: Build innovation into your business and culture, and innovative people will gravitate towards you. Judge people you're interviewing by their stories and experiences and how these align with your values and mission.
Don't be scared of failing: Failure is never a negative experience; you'll always learn from it. No idea is a stupid idea – it will always be the foundation for future innovation. And there's no such thing as overnight success and glamorous entrepreneurship.
Innovate to get ahead: Innovation is such an important competitive advantage. If something doesn't exist, those who are bold enough to create it are the most successful.
Innovation doesn't have to be fast: Don't try to go 0–100. Make bridges and ease people into extreme innovations. Being too innovative can be a negative if you're disrupting an industry, so take it in small steps. That way, people can follow along and get on board.
Recognising and taking advantage of consumer trends
Panel: A conversation with Kirsten Green, founder of Forerunner Ventures
Consumer trends are much more uncertain than ever before, which makes it hard to predict the future. But in these challenging economic times, there's a lot of opportunity to help people get back on track.
There's less structure in life these days, and much more freedom. But people in business find this difficult to evaluate themselves against, so need a support system and structure.
As a result, businesses need to make things more meaningful and more connected (particularly through storytelling) to strengthen their connection with their customers.
There must be a balance between being aspirational and being grounded and sustainable. This allows you to quickly pivot in uncertain times.
What investors are looking for right now
Some investors don't want to deal with trendy businesses or 'hot topic' businesses. Instead, they are looking for opportunities for long-term stable growth.
This is an alternative to private equity – long-term support from investors can lead to a stronger guarantee for growth.
Businesses that can prove they can adapt to change – particularly technological change –will catch more investors' interest.