Women Business Owners of Prince George are shaping and redefining the future of business in Prince George’s County and surrounding areas.
Historically, it’s been hard for women to have equal footing when it comes to equal pay, promotions, and compensation. This matriculation also occurred in the start-ups and ownership of small businesses for women. According to the Women Business Enterprise National Council, in 1972, women-owned only 402,000 businesses which represented 4.6 percent of all businesses.
Since 1972, there’s been a huge increase in those numbers. More specifically, Maryland ranks as the top state for women business ownership and Maryland’s top five ranked communities are all in Prince George County. Women-led businesses are thriving more commonly, especially in Prince George County. Women Business Owners of Prince George uses this evidence as fuel to educate, develop, and invest in women-owned businesses and aspiring businesswomen.
Women Business Owners of Prince George is an organization of active businesswomen who join as a united front to represent how influential and enterprising women businesses are and can be. Since 1986, Women Business Owners of Prince George has played an intricate role in creating, mentoring, and developing businesswomen in Prince George’s County and surrounded areas. The women-led fellowship utilizes monthly events of networking, workshops, seminars, and community outreach initiatives to encourage and enhance women’s business awareness and make a difference in the community.
On April 16, WBO hosted its monthly meeting. The guest speaker of the event was Darnyelle Jervey Harmon, CEO of Incredible One Enterprise. Incredible One Enterprises is a business consulting and coaching firm that assists business owners on the ways to “build a business financially and spiritually good for them.”
Harmon presented to the WBO members, “Scale Up,” a presentation detailing how they can expand their businesses to generate seven-figure revenue. As a woman in business, Harmon acknowledged with WBO members the struggles and different roadblocks women experience as business leaders.
Some of the challenges Harmon and WBO members expressed as business owners are prevalent among women. According to Business News Daily, defying social expectations, limited access to funding, reluctance in being taken seriously, owning oneself accomplishments, building a support network, balance of family and business, coping with failure are listed as the seven primary challenges women face as entrepreneurs.
Darnyelle shared words of encouragement and business practices that will h grow of their businesses.
“What will hold me back is the story you tell myself. You will never out-due the perception of yourself. You must change the six inches between your head, before you can bring six figures between your fingers,” said Harmon.
The April 16 event is a microcosm what WBO embodies and the “WBO’s way.” Whether it is hosting an influential guest speaker sharing business altering information or focusing on a single business topic that could be implemented in one’s business, WBO draws inspiration from each other, conducts genuine fellowships, and engages in honest, insightful dialogue as resources to grow their businesses.
Stefani Lomax, CEO of HRPro4You LLC and WBO Director of Communication, started her business in 2015 while working full-time. Expectedly, Lomax faced challenges as she journeyed into the world of business.
WBO assisted in her development as she faced those challenges. “WBO helped in exposure connecting…networking with those in a position of decision making,” stated Stefani. In May, she will celebrate four years in business.
WBO uses the power of interaction and celebration as navigation and motivation for women who face obstacles in their respective professions. Because WBO includes a diverse group of women from different jobs such as law and policy legislation, marketing, fitness, and natural hair products, and human resources, they utilize each other’s expertise to stay ahead in the fast-evolving pace of business.
“When you start to dialogue together and really find out what everybody does, your solutions are right here in the room with you,” said Dawn P. Jackson, CEO of NuDawn Marketing Group and President of WBO.