As a female in tech, entrepreneurship, and investing, I’m often asked how we move the needle on diversity. We have all seen the data around why diversity is important (stronger companies, bigger bottom lines – not to mention that it’s just the right damn thing to do).
I got to where I am because I come from a long line of strong, fighting women who taught me that I’m in control of my life. Not because I’m a woman, but because I AM. I got to this point because my father is an entrepreneur, and he also taught me that I’m in control of my life and financial independence through entrepreneurship. I didn’t grow up believing I was powerful because I was a woman, I grew up believing I was powerful because I make my own decisions and can change the things in my life I don’t like. Gender wasn’t at the center of the conversation – rather independent thinking was.
But I’m often asked how to move the needle, specifically for women, and the truth is, I don’t know. Sure I have my hypotheses, but at the end of the day, I believe what works for one won’t necessarily work for another. And that’s why I’m so excited about the Techstars Foundation.
The Techstars Foundation seeks to support organizations, that want to move the needle on diversity (not just gender, but ethnicity, and even age). We’re not focused on companies run by under-represented individuals, rather companies whose mission is to help those underserved populations gain advantages, pulling themselves up by their own bootstraps. We’re not taking a one-size fits all approach, we’ll support many efforts and many approaches to solving this problem. Because what works for one might not work for another, and supporting many organizations is a great way to seed change across all populations.
If you’re passionate about the diversity topic – consider donating to the Techstars Foundation. No dollar amount is too small.
If you’re an organization who has a mission or a program around supporting underserved populations in entrepreneurship – apply for a grant from the Techstars Foundation.