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    Written by Marissa Limsiaco
    on August 29, 2018

    Role models and confidence. These two concepts are vital for small businesses in Austin to have according to three fantastic women—Chris Mascaro, Tam Hawkins, Christine Vu—who spoke at the Peoplefund Luncheon recently.

    What about these attributes make them so important? Here’s what my team and I took away from the luncheon:

    Role Models: “Whatever industry you are in, look at who is doing it the best (man or woman). Model it. Improve it. And enjoy it.”

    This was Tam Hawkins’ advice for women rising up to meet their professional goals.  Tam is currently the President and CEO of the Greater Austin Black Chamber of Commerce. Prior to this role, she served as the Vice President of Corporate Engagement & Membership. Her background includes a primary concentration in Corporate Sales & Marketing management roles for some of the nation’s most admired companies.

    Confidence: Have confidence in situations where you may not feel entirely qualified.

    Chris Mascaro gave this advice because she has pioneered and conquered new horizons her entire career she wanted others to know how to overcome fear of the unknown. Chris is a true entrepreneur at heart. Having lived all around the country and now settled in Austin, Texas, she has slowly been building her career and her business(es) with the goal of retiring at 40! She has been teaching small business owners marketing, branding, and business techniques to help them get organized and get their businesses off the ground.

    Resource: PeopleFund Women Business Assistance Centers

    PeopleFund’s Women Business Assistance Centers offer workshops, online resources, and one-on-one business advising, they are there to walk you through the ins and outs of small business finance, marketing, law, human resources, and management while preparing you for access to capital and small business success.

    We were extremely proud and honored to be in a room full of women supporting each other and sharing valuable lessons learned. More than 9.1 million firms across the United States are owned by women—these businesses generate $1.4 trillion in sales, employ 7.9 million people—and PeopleFund is doing some amazing things to empower women in our community. We're looking forward to more of PeopleFund's events. Until then, seek out those role models, be confident, and use the resources available to you.

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