Women-owned and women-led companies aren’t the same
IBJ, March 2023
How we count and tell stories about numbers can proliferate systemic gender discrimination. Some of the stories being told about the success of women founders are incorrect because of how data is being collected and communicated. When “successful looking” (aka inflated) numbers are reported and celebrated publicly, no one questions the methodology. Those responsible for data are not held accountable. So the cycle of systemic gender discrimination continues.
Indiana politics make it difficult for tech industry to recruit, keep employees in state
IndyStar, January 2023
The disconnect is growing between Indiana's mounting socially conservative policies, which includes not only the near-total abortion ban currently stalled in court, but also a ban on trans girls playing school sports, and the tech industry's increasingly vocal progressive workforce.
The tension is brewing as major employers struggle to recruit and keep employees in the state, a problem that is snowballing into a crisis for Indiana.
Success can—and should—be whatever you want
IBJ, December 2022
How do you define success for yourself? Psychologist Lynn Hynes has a fresh take: “We adhere to outdated social norms about success and need to replace old ideas with something more truthful.” Hynes recently led a conversation about the definition of success with four generations of professionals at a Mental Wellness for Business program (hosted by The Startup Ladies). Their answers changed my own definition of success. I invite you to ask yourself this important question and see if any of the answers shared below resonate with you at this stage in your life.
LISTEN: Oseye Boyd talks with Kristen Cooper about The Startup Ladies
IndyStar, November 2022
This episode of Voices of the Community features Kristen Cooper, CEO and founder of The Startup Ladies. Cooper began The Startup Ladies in 2014 as a way to help women entrepreneurs operate successful businesses. Cooper shares how her journey led her to founding The Startup Ladies, the organization’s five focus areas and why equity is vital for women-owned businesses.
How to keep women founders, investors from leaving Indiana
IBJ, October 2022
Significant cultural and legal changes in Indiana this year have made it more difficult for women to start up, scale up, retain and attract female talent. The combination of attacking reproductive rights on Sept. 15 and banning transgender girls from playing girls sports on May 24 has created an increasingly inhospitable climate for women in this state. Combined with very little state and private investment going into women-owned businesses, many women are questioning whether Indiana really values them.
More than 200 Indiana businesses sign ACLU letter opposing abortion restrictions
IndyStar, July 2022
During an 11 a.m. news conference at Emmis Communications on Thursday, the ACLU of Indiana said more than 250 businesses representing more 39 communities across the state had signed on to the letter. Signees include small business Silver in the City on Mass. Avenue, Emmis Communications on Monument Circle as well as The Startup Ladies, a company that supports female entrepreneurs as they grow and scale their businesses, among others.
Tinker, test it, talk about it, then teach it
IBJ, June 2022
Tinkering frees your mind. It gives you confidence. It opens the headspace needed to perceive the inconceivable. It helps to remove the attachment you have to something you don’t need anymore. I remember the exact moment I learned how to tinker. Admittedly, I was a bit of a late bloomer.
Advocates for female entrepreneurs want Elevate Ventures’ next CEO to be a woman
IBJ, February 2022
As Indianapolis-based Elevate Ventures moves forward in its search for a new CEO, a local company that supports female entrepreneurs is publicly advocating that a woman be named the next leader of the startup-support organization.
Letter to the IEDC from The Startup Ladies Community about the future of Elevate Ventures
LinkedIn, February 2022
The following letter was emailed to the IEDC board and staff from The Startup Ladies community about the future of Elevate Ventures. Its purpose was to educate those responsible for allocating millions of Indiana tax dollars to Elevate Ventures about the challenges diverse women founders have experienced while working with the organization. The letter also provides a vision for how Elevate Ventures can be truly supportive to diverse women founders in the future.
In the workplace: Business leaders can help stop homophobic, transphobic behavior
IBJ, December 2021
The LGBTQ+ community needs business leaders to better understand the bigotry that many experience every day. We need leaders to play a significant role in eliminating discriminatory behaviors that were learned outside of the workplace.
NAWBO names Visionary Award winners
Inside Indiana Business, November 2021
Emerging Entrepreneur of the Year: Mel McMahon Stone (Indiana Owned)
Indianapolis Choice: Jennifer Ping (Krieg DeVault)
NAWBO-Indianapolis Member of the Year: Gayle Ross
Corporate Partner of the Year: Indianapolis Airport Authority
Woman Business Owner of the Year: Kristen Cooper (The Startup Ladies)
In the workplace: Why every leader needs a therapist and how to fine one
IBJ, October 2021
Are the problems you are experiencing right now related to: A. business, B. your mental well-being, or C. both? If you answered A, B or C, it might finally be time to discuss your concerns with a mental health professional. Work and home life could be exponentially better if you spend time and money on teletherapy.
In the workplace: Have a business idea? Survey customers first.
IBJ, August 2021
When you have a new idea for a business, it’s important to understand if there are other people who experience the problem you are trying to solve in a similar way. The only way to know for sure is to ask people who might become your future customers.