Female-Run Waste-Reducing Businesses

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3 Female-Run Businesses Working to Eliminate Waste
At the beginning of 2021, a worldwide competition was launched by the organization What Design Can Do, challenging designers and entrepreneurs to come up with innovative ways to tackle waste. By the time the competition closed, they had received more than 1,400 entries from more than 100 countries. It showed that new and efficient ways to help cut waste and save the planet are clearly at the forefront for design teams across the globe. Here are three inspiring businesses, all led by women, working on innovative waste-reduction ideas.

Club de Reparadores. Twenty-first-century throwaway culture has taken hold across the globe. Clothing is ditched every time there’s a new fashion trend, phones are discarded when a new model is released, and faulty electronics get replaced rather than repaired. Camila Naveira and Melina Scioli founded Club de Reparadores to deliver repair events and education in Central and South America to encourage communities to move away from waste and towards sustainability.

Modern Synthesis. Jen Keane founded the startup company Modern Synthesis in order to research and create a new generation of environmentally friendly textiles and fashion materials using biology. They have developed a technique to partly weave and partly “grow” textiles using nanocellulose, with the resulting materials reportedly being even stronger than steel. Their next goal is to build a production facility and partner with fashion brands to bring their innovation to the world.

Nyungu Afrika. In much of Africa, women’s sanitary products are prohibitively expensive for a considerable proportion of the population, while those that are available contain many toxic chemicals and plastics. Kenyan entrepreneur Mary Nyaruai Mureithi started Nyungu Afrika in 2020 with the goal of delivering biodegradable sanitary pads made using corn husks and pineapple leaves. The organization also works to make the products available to the underprivileged, with one pad donated for each one sold.

How to Win Big in Today’s Economy

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How to Bootstrap Your Business from Women Who’ve Done It Themselves
Not everyone has access to a board of investors or family money when it comes to starting a business. Those who buckle in and pull funds from their own hard work are known as “bootstrappers.” Easy it most certainly is not, but worth it? Why not ask these women who’ve done it themselves?

Shannon Maldonado says, “Anyone who wants to quit their job and start a business, I always tell them, I would stay at your current job as long as possible, so you can do both and save money.” While starting her interior design business, Yowie, Shannon was working full-time. She stayed in the job for nine years, carefully saving so that she could funnel it back into Yowie. Even after she left her full-time job, she still freelanced for about 18 months to support herself.

The problem is when you’re running your own business, the money just evaporates. Sophie Lou Jacobsen didn’t even have a business plan, just some personal connections and a whole lot of professional experience, when she started her own glassware company. She had some interest in her designs after a New York design show, but putting them into production was another story. She ended up self-funding a way to get her designs made and shipped and built up her business from there.

Yasmin Maya also self-funded. She set herself a goal of $10,000 saved from her additional income. She had to cut back a lot, but she reminded herself that it was worth it for the end goal. It took her two years to save the money she used as the initial investment, and now she has a successful beauty brand, Birdy Lashes.

Starting your own business from scratch is hard, but it can work and is worth it if you’re determined and make the right sacrifices.

Let’s Connect

Worth Reading

The Best Interview Questions for Remote Jobs
Artisan Talent
Artisan Talent
Sometimes in a job interview, we are so preoccupied with the questions we’re being asked that we forget to get the answers we need. This is especially hard when going for a remote working role. This article from Artisan Talent outlines a list of useful questions to ask to get the most out of your role and maintain balance.
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How Remote Work Supports My Career Living with a Disability
Emily Bhattacharya
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In this thought-provoking blog post, Emily Bhattacharya explains how remote working can be accessible for everyone, using her experience of living with Crohn’s disease as an example. Now working remotely from Italy, she is not only happier but also much more productive. Use this piece as an example of how remote work can, well, work
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Here’s How to Create a Business Press Kit
A press kit is a must-have for businesses, and it’s much more than a simple press release sent out once or twice a year. A press kit is a well-put-together document made up of images, videos, logos, and information about your business given to a journalist. It covers everything they need to know about you to help spread the word. Here’s how to get it right.

Company background

All press kits must include a company background. While that might sound obvious, you’d be surprised how many businesses miss this vital trick. Your press kit needs to make it easy for media outlets to pull information about who you are. Keep it simple, succinct, and to the point.

List of press releases

Press releases don’t need to die once they’ve done one round of emails. You write a press release because you have something to say, and journalists will want to know what you’ve already said before writing something new. They can be full documents or in PDF format. Just make sure they’re readily available.

Product info

A simple fact sheet will give media outlets all the info they need to feature you in any coverage. This way, they don’t need to scour your website or navigate your sales department for info.

Contact info

You may think it’s obvious how to get in contact with you, but journalists won’t always agree. Make it easy with a dedicated section listing anyone they might need to know.

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Links You Can Use – Storytelling
Telling stories has always been important to us. It’s ingrained in our bones. But it’s no longer something we save for the campfire. It’s important in all walks of life, from branding to bedtime. Here are some links you can use now to captivate your audience.

The 10 Best Inspirational Biographies

There’s nothing more inspiring than reading the stories of the people who’ve come before. Here is a link for some biography recommendations.

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How to Tell a Story with Data

Nowadays, storytelling is more than just words. This article from Harvard Business Review outlines how to tell a story with data.

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Why Storytelling is Important

Of course, the original fairy tales with the heroes and the villains are still as popular today as they’ve ever been. This is an article on why stories are so important today.

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12 Top Storytelling Marketing Examples: How Brands Tell Stories

Want to use storytelling in your marketing strategy but not sure where to start? Have a look at these real-life examples.

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Testing the 4-Day Workweek: Worth a Try
The idea of a four-day workweek may sound enticing, but is it actually doable? Often it feels like there aren’t enough hours in the day, let alone the week. But can it actually work? Especially for agencies with multiple clients and departments?

The concept of a four-day workweek is not new. Iceland, Finland, and even some companies in the UK have decided to try it out, with an overwhelmingly positive response. In fact, 95% of respondents to a survey by website It’s Nice That were for a four-day workweek.

What’s the worst that could happen?

The biggest obstacle most companies and workers alike worry about is the lack of time. Will you be able to get the same workload done? Will the workload increase or decrease? Will you end up staying late? What if your clients are unhappy with the shift? These are all plausible concerns and ones rooted in truth. Could the thing implemented to alleviate stress actually cause more of it? As with any big change, there is always a risk, but with the conversation around mental health and work/life balance shifting into the general consciousness, a four-day working week seems like a worthy one to make.

How can it work?

Mitchel White, managing director of Manchester-based agency Reward, implemented a 30-hour working week by closing up shop on a Wednesday. It was not without its teething pains. According to White, “Wednesday guilt” became a thing, and catching up on emails on a Thursday felt foreign for a little while. Clients also had to adjust to not getting all-hours access. But did they burn down? No, and they stopped burning out, too.

Closing the business for an extra day a week might not work for all. Consider the option of giving your staff flexible working hours or choose which extra day they would like off. This way, there’s always someone in the office to answer the phone.

While it may seem like you have to be readily available all the time, the truth is you don’t. The four-day week is definitely worth a try.

This newsletter and any information contained herein are intended for general informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal, financial or medical advice. The publisher takes great efforts to ensure the accuracy of information contained in this newsletter. However, we will not be responsible at any time for any errors or omissions or any damages, howsoever caused, that result from its use. Seek competent professional advice and/or legal counsel with respect to any matter discussed or published in this newsletter.

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