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Talking Money: Wanna Become An Entrepreneur? Get Inspired By Three Business Women

Paying college or that much-desired course can be difficult, even more for those who don’t have an internship or a registered job.  Also, to start new projects can seem pretty crazy, especially for students. However, according to the survey “Entrepreneurs and Their Businesses”, developed by Rede Mulher Empreendedora (RME), we represent 43% of Brazilian entrepreneurs, which has shown growth in women-led businesses, financial independence and the impact of activities generated in the national economy.

Thinking about it, this month’s Her Campus finance column Talking Career has decided to bring some stories of women who ventured into their own business that might inspire you.

Doomdsday, by Kari

Do you like artistic creations? So you will definitely identify with Kari’s work. Resident of the West zone of São Paulo, the 20-year-old girl started ‘naturally’, as she describes. Observing the rise of sustainable and alternative fashion, she combined the useful with the pleasant, mixing ways of making money and her love for hip hop culture, customizing clothes with manual painting. This is how the Doomsday project came about.

Image Source: Kari/Personal File

She reports that, for more thrift stores that exist in São Paulo, she never found printed pieces with themes present in Hip Hop, which was another incentive to put her plan in action. “When I started I had no recourse, just some jeans jackets and pants, that I bought for R$60. So I catched inks left in my house and started painting the first jackets”.

To make her work reach more people, Kari uses the Instagram app. With current 800 followers, the artist negotiates in the platform. She doesn’t consider herself an entrepreneur because she never planned for profit, only wanting to do something she likes for people who also identify with the hip hop universe, thus allowing access to exclusive and good quality clothes.

Being underground, Doomsday counts with the collaboration of photographers and models, friends of Kari, who end up helping in the disclosure of the customizations. In a few months, her work grew and the old professional journey became a drag on the brand’s commitments. “My routine had changed, so I decided to leave my job in the mall to dedicated time to my art, it was impossible conciliate both. I realized that continue there would not bring me a return, but invest in my art would be more positive than another choice”, she explains.

Image Source: Kari/Personal File

Don’t you think the story ends here. Today, the artist always need to be alert to not be distracted in the work she performs at home, in addition to policing the expenses, since she has to pay for the purchase of the material and the delivery of the pieces in the subways of the city. The exit from the other job was also a troublesome factor for Kari’s family, that was uncertain about the girl’s choice.

Even with the difficulties, everything was solved with time. “We can not feel down by the barriers of the beginning. Like I said, it was always something organic. I made clothes to order and I used to paint fabric since I was a kid, so I thought I would put it all together into something in prompt delivery”.

Mylah Collection

Only five months ago, Mylah Rocha announced a preview of her brand on Instagram. With a current 63,000 followers in her personal profile in the platform, the 25-year-old woman from São Paulo presented a line of handmade hoop earrings to people who were already following her modeling career.

Image Source: Mylah/Personal File

Having a passion in common with her current customers, and noting a shortage of brands exclusively focused on the accessory, Mylah used the R$500 he had saved to start the business, which in the first month brought a return of R$4.000.

“I’m practically living on the profit of my company, it’s very difficult because of the growth in demand, my routine has changed totally, so I’ve given up a lot of things now at the beginning,” says the micro entrepreneur.

She also recalls that during the process of searching for suppliers and intense market research, she broke the preconception that to be successful it is necessary to be rich and have a certain age. For the entrepreneur, becoming a successful young entrepreneur is possible if you study and put the learning into practice.

Mom and influential in social media, Mylah reports that she has so far achieved a 70% growth in the brand, and has restructured her business model with fewer hires, with only one other person helping her.

Regarding the future, the micro entrepreneur plans to expand product lines, starting to create collections of glasses and clothes, but without giving up the stylish earrings.

Rede Mulher Empreendedora (RME), by Ana Fontes

In a traditional model, the founder of Rede Mulher Empreendedora (RME), Ana Fontes, says that she opened her first business in 2009, when becoming an entrepreneur was not so easy like nowadays. The businesswoman faced many obstacles, which made her aware of how other women could also be in the same situation.

Image Source: Ana Fontes/Personal File

Selected to participate of the “10.000 Mulheres” Goldman Sachs and FGV training program, Ana was even more willing to share experiences and knowledge with other women, what made her create RME. Currently, through professional training, she helps at least 300,000 women from all regions of Brazil.

Entrepreneurship is a very lonely activity, and, for women, even more. We end up taking on all the other roles and complicating our life a bit more. If we do not have the support and collaboration of other entrepreneurs women, it is very difficult to do it. These movements are great for women to exchange experiences with those who are going through the same phase, to create partnerships and increase networking”, explains.

I want to undertake. What do I need to do?

The 14% growth in women’s participation in the entrepreneurial environment over the past 14 years has encouraged them to become their own bosses. Ana points out that many obstacles such as the definition of business, low-cost practical courses, and the search for the balance between personal and professional activities will be found along the way. However, that it is extremely important to establish some parameters so the idea can leave the paper. Among the premises highlighted, the main ones are:

1. Know your niche/target audience;

2. Follow pages of entities that support entrepreneurship;

3. Go to events and learn about the niche;

4. Seek a mentor, someone with more experience who can help with your doubts;

5. Identify your skills to think about the business opportunity.

Here, it is necessary to consider that your project has to solve real problems of the society. For Ana, testing the model is necessary. Only market research is not enough, it is important to do a test phase with real customers, investing as little as possible in this initial stage.

Kari also considers the tests essential, since it has gone through a long stage of experimentation, developing paintings to order since 2012. Always in search of friends’ opinions, the artist quotes that always knew how to accept the criticisms and suggestions about her pieces.

Another important factor for the young woman is creativity, since customizations and unique creations instigate people to meet and even become loyal customers who are looking for something unique and cool. Mylah stresses the same, and also highlights the initiative to take risks in the businesses with the available resources.

“Look at what you can do right now, and start with what you have, because wait for better conditions to take the first step, can get in the way. So, put your ideas into practice”, she concludes.

So, are you ready to start?

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Denise Kanda

Casper Libero

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