In the male-dominated arena of entrepreneurship, our day has finally come.
Investment money is now available FOR women, BY women. These women investors are seeking female leaders in both non-profit and for-profit companies.
The inaugural Pipeline Investment Fund recently launched and we were humbled and honored to be one of the ten entrepreneurs selected to pitch for a 50K investment in PROUDgirls, the company we founded.
The Pipeline Fellowship trains women philanthropists from all professions to be angel investors through education, mentoring and practice. Each angel agrees to invest $5,000 of their own money into a business that ultimately fits all the criteria they learn about in the few months of training. The most interesting part was that we were all learning from each other. The concept was genius.
This was our first investment presentation and boy did we have lots to do. Namely, get over our fear of public speaking.
Knowing that we only had two weeks to prepare a completed business plan, Power Point presentation and finances was daunting to say the least. We knew in our hearts that whether we were selected or not it would be a positive experience for us. So in true PROUDgirl form, we got to work, like we always do, and made it happen. We worked tirelessly leading up to the pitch. We shed a few tears and had a few good laughs along the way, yet we stayed the course and kept our eyes on the prize.
Although I developed my first-ever pulled shoulder muscle on the eve of our presentation (think: the inability to secure my own bra and my gratitude towards my biz partner who did it for me), we survived the precise seven-minute pitch relieved that we had finished and presented our ideas flawlessly.
One week later we were given the news: PROUDgirls was not selected to receive the investment. There was a tinge of disappointment but pride won out. We've been on such a journey while building PROUDgirls, that this was just another step up the ladder and recognition that we're on the right path. Yes, it would have been nice to receive the investment money, but the fact that we were chosen to participate in the program and had the opportunity to experience it was enough.
We continue to move forward in our search for funding, knowing that we have something spectacular to offer the world. We will always remember our first pitch and how it showed us that we are capable of accomplishing anything. The Pipeline Fund allowed us to step outside of our comfort zone and go for it regardless of the outcome.
It is 100% true that when you do something you're terrified of it will only make you more awesome.