Women in Cloud launches inaugural #CloudInnovateHER Pitch Challenge

Women in Cloud (WiC), the organization responsible for working with global leaders and policymakers to help women entrepreneurs create economic opportunity, is looking for the next revolutionary innovation in tech-based enterprise solutions. 

We are launching the inaugural #CloudInnovateHER Pitch Challenge on Nov 4, 2019, with the goal of helping women tech entrepreneurs across global market develop, showcase and win enterprise customers. As demands in enterprise tech grow, the need for products and services that address these unique challenges increases. The #CloudInnovateHER Challenge provides that platform. 

Enterprise tech is one of the fastest growing and most influential sectors of the tech industry with enterprise software spending expected to reach $457 billion this year, but the numbers indicate that women are largely being left out of that economic opportunity. [Gartner] Although women founders continue to deliver outsized returns, data demonstrates that they still receive less than 3% of all VC funding, and women-founded companies catering to audiences beyond female consumers receive 54% less funding on average. Plus, there are disproportionately fewer women founding startups that serve enterprise, with only 2% of female entrepreneurs founding B2B companies, compared to 12% of men.

That’s why we at Women in Cloud are generating new ways for women tech entrepreneurs to get better access to funding, education, and a supporting community. 

“We are excited to bring this opportunity to women-owned tech businesses and help them find commercial success by showcasing their enterprise-ready cloud solutions,” says Chaitra Vedullapalli, President of Women in Cloud.  “Here’s a chance for startups and companies to compete on a global scale for a share of $10,000 in cash and access to Cloud Accelerator.” 

This experience is sponsored by industry leaders like Microsoft, Meylah and others, who are also core supporters of expanding enterprise business opportunities to more women entrepreneurs. If indications from the Boston’s Consulting Group’s are correct, then if women entrepreneurs received funding on par with their male colleagues, some estimates indicate that the global economy could experience a $5 trillion boost. Beyond the importance of gender parity, that influx into the global economy would be an incredible lift. 

Be recognized as an up-and-coming leader in the enterprise cloud space, and compete for the top prize of $10,000 to contribute to your business growth.

Qualifying is easy. Women-led companies developing an enterprise-ready cloud solution that’s earned less than $10 million in the past 12 months qualify to enter. Enter your business pitch or encourage others who qualify to enter. 

Solutions will be evaluated for originality, market feasibility, and use of cloud and AI solutions.

Bring us your best pitch. Enter today

Who should apply?

  • Ready: Companies that are developing and/or developed an enterprise-ready cloud solution and looking to expand their customer market
  • Set: US registered companies that already have a business plan and are pitch-ready with a commercially viable enterprise-ready cloud solution
  • Change: Companies offering a cloud tech solution that solves enterprise related challenges

Why apply?

  • Exposure to cloud market leaders and their channel partners
  • Access to go-to-market benefits and cloud accelerator
  • Global industry recognition as an innovative enterprise-ready cloud solution
  • Recognition to maintain your company’s competitive edge

What are the competition timelines?

  • Submission: The competition starts at 12:01 a.m. Pacific Time (PT) on Nov 04th, 2019 and ends at 11:59 p.m. PT on Dec 24th, 2019
  • Selection: Finalists will be notified by Jan 6th, 2019, and provided with instructions for next steps
  • Pitch Competition: Four finalists will have an opportunity to deliver their pitch during WIC Summit 2020, Jan 25th, 2020. The winner will be selected at the pitch competition and will receive a prize.

Note: Finalists will be awarded free registration to the Women In Cloud Summit 2020 registration, but will need to arrange and pay for their own travel and expenses related to attending the event. Submissions that aren’t selected will still receive a 15% discount to the event. In addition to having an opportunity to pitch your solution, you’ll have access to top companies and industry leaders from Microsoft, Ingram, SAP, and many more, who will present valuable sessions and invaluable resources throughout the day.

Selection Criteria

  • 50% – Originality of idea which solves real customer need/business problem in the enterprise market
  • 20% – Strong market opportunity & potential revenue stream
  • 30% – Cloud and Artificial Intelligence (AI) is core to the solution

Judges

Judges for the competition include well-known leaders in the enterprise cloud industry with a proven track record of success and provide key influence to the industry at large. Regardless of the outcome, all entrants will benefit from exposure to these influencers. 

Ready to create change for the global good? Apply now

Read the full terms and conditions for more details. 

For more information visit https://www.womenincloud.com/cloudinnovateher/ or contact community@womenincloud.com

 

How to Partner with Cloud Hyperscalers By Nicole Sayler

Hyper-what? 

Let’s start with; what does it mean to hyperscale in terms of technology? By definition, “Hyperscale computing is a distributed infrastructure that can quickly accommodate an increased demand for internet-facing and back-end computing resources without requiring additional physical space, cooling or electrical power.”

An example comes from companies like Microsoft, Google, and Amazon who have the capacity and resources to create a massive infrastructure with many servers in one data center. Those companies invest in the physical equipment to create a data center and carry the ongoing cost and responsibility of maintenance and world-class security. In 2015 alone, Microsoft invested more than a billion dollars in security research and development. **

Partnering with a hyperscaler is beneficial because instead of spending time, money and resources on physical infrastructure, partners can ‘rent’ out cloud space. Why build the entire data center when you can use a hyperscalers cloud and pay for only what you use, when you need it? Hyperscalers enable any company to dream big without being held back by the limitations of a large capital expense.

At Microsoft, we look to at companies (we call them our partners) to help us scale and to provide our customers with the solutions they need to digitally transform their business. “For everyone working with partners, I encourage you to ask yourself “what could be?” and explore new, creative ways to do interesting things that add value back to our platforms for customers” -Satya Nadella in Hit Refresh

Hyper-why? 

So, you’re sold on the cloud. Wonderful. But there’s another huge reason beyond the ROI, security, and scalability of using a hyperscalers cloud. Companies like Microsoft, Google, and Amazon have an existing customer base, extensive sales team, and an experienced partner network.

Microsoft alone has over 3,500 field sellers who manage customers and are aligned with teams of technical resources. Leveraging customer/seller relationships to accelerate sales is a game-changing strategy for partners at every level.

Being able to sell with Microsoft is a fast way to augment and enable your own sales force. Joining the Microsoft Partner Network (MPN) opens the door to Go-To-Market benefits, which provides marketing and branding resources for partners.

 

Hyper-how? 

Microsoft leverages its partner ecosystem to scale its solutions and digitally transform the way customers do business. One focus is having partners publish apps within the Microsoft Azure Marketplace and/or AppSource.

Within those marketplaces partners, list offers and trials, manage and monitor apps, and sell directly to customers within the Microsoft global ecosystem. Once the app has been published, there are additional Go-To-Market benefits like; Marketplace performance insights, White-glove Azure Active Directory (AAD) integration, and on-boarding and One Commercial Partner (OCP) catalog listing. The OCP catalog is especially influential, as it is utilized by Microsoft sellers to determine which partners have the solutions necessary for their customer’s digital transformation. Below is a link to more information on how to publish an app;

https://partner.microsoft.com/en-us/isv-resource-hub/publish-your-app

 

Whether the IP solution has yet to be developed or just needs help to move forward, the Partner Development Management (PDM) team at Microsoft can help. The PDM team works specifically with new solutions to get them into Microsoft Cloud and can help Independent Software Vendors (ISV’s) by engaging technical resources, publishing apps in Marketplace/AppSource, and becoming Co-Sell ready.

To significantly increase the reach, visibility and performance of an IP solution/app contact; ipdmteamus@microsoft.com

Next Steps to Partner with Microsoft:

  1. Get a Microsoft Partner Network ID (MPN ID). https://partner.microsoft.com/en-us/support/partner-center-help
  2. Have a conversation with a PDM about your solution; ipdmteamus@microsoft.com
  3. Visit the Microsoft Partner page to get more information for every level/partner type. https://partner.microsoft.com/en-US/

Credit : Nicole Sayler

Owning Your Dream Opportunity By Julie Chase

It’s difficult not to get discouraged when reading reports such as the “Women in the Workplace,” by McKinsey&Company and LeanIn.Org—where we see little progress on diversity in the corporate world over the last few years. But let’s zoom out a bit to 20 years ago when I entered the tech world. I remember only seeing 1 or 2 women engineers in any given team. In the past few years, I’ve not only worked with many but have also been fortunate to work with many women leaders.

When I look through a wider lens, I can better see the great progress made and feel more positive. With the influx of women-focused organizations, like Women In Cloud and female-founded companies, I’m more optimistic than ever. I truly believe the next few years will be marked by exponential results.

Even in my own business, at Dream Job Catcher, I’ve noticed a positive shift. I regularly talk to recruiters and over the past few years, there has been a significant increase in women negotiating for higher compensation. One recruiter from a Fortune 500 company says that every time a candidate asks for more, she is able to present a higher package. If they don’t ask, the original offer stays in tact.

More than half of our clients are women. One thing that’s pretty consistent is that they read job descriptions literally—often asking “have I done this exactly?” Whereas, most men read the bulleted lists as “Can I do this?” And the latter is the better way to approach the list—as well as it’s based on other experiences that are parallel to the role.

This is just one of many examples where I help our clients realize their full potential by focusing on their strengths. We work together on establishing the right mindset and overcome limiting beliefs. We also partner to determine your dream opportunity, which I define as an opportunity you love every day—and then create an action plan to make it become a reality. There’s nothing more empowering than taking ownership of your career & life and making it happen!

We’re extremely excited to sponsor the Women In Cloud Summit. 

Please stop by our booth or attend the Career & Life Transitions roundtable.

 

Credit: Julie Chase, CEO of Dream Job Catcher

How to Sell without Selling Using 5 Feminine Business Principles by Sage Lavine, Women Rocking Business

Did you know that women get paid $.79 cents for every dollar a man earns?

That means if a man earns $65,000 annually, a woman in the same role earns only $52,000. If a man earns $100,000, a woman in a similar position only earns $80,000.

The pay gap is a big issue.

The solution? Start your own business.

Women are now starting businesses 1.5 times faster than men. Becoming an entrepreneur is one of the best ways to close the pay gap and get paid what you’re worth.

Women are rising up all around the world to claim their value. We also want the freedoms that come with having our own businesses: setting our own schedule so we can work from home and be there for our kids; replacing a crazy commute with a walk down the hall to our home office; and being the visionary who calls the shots.

Women are not victims any longer to the pay gap. We have the opportunity right now to start businesses that are financially successful and an expression of our passions and our purpose.

I went from being a schoolteacher in Iowa to build a million dollar company. I know it can be a scary and exciting leap. And it is one worth making.

One of the biggest challenges most women face in building their own business is selling their services. When I first started my business, I hated selling. I almost threw up before my first enrollment conversation. Yet I quickly realized that in order to be successful, I had to find a way to embrace sales. I had to get over my judgments about “selling” in order to earn the income and make the impact I desired.

I trained with amazing leaders and adapted all that I learned to create an approach to sales that works, and is based on feminine principles. I’ve now earned millions of dollars and reached over 100,000 conscious women , entrepreneurs,using my 5 Principles of Feminine Business.

And this is exactly the passion I spoke of with my favorite publisher, Hayhouse, when I approached them about publishing my book. “Women Rocking Business” which recently came out and became a #1 best-seller in a matter of days, because the book is standing for something bigger than money, success, or feeding a bigger, better, faster stronger entrepreneurial culture.

If you’re thinking of starting a business, or already have, and you hate sales, too, these are for you. I believe these principles will make all the difference in your ability to change your mindset about sales and fall so deeply in love with marketing that you’ll become a feminine sales ninja!

 Feminine Business Principle #1: Honesty Sells

The absolute secret to becoming effective and authentic at selling is to be honest and up front. If you’re already in business for yourself, or you’re about to be, acknowledge that you are a professional. You have products and services for sale. There’s nothing wrong with this, so tell the truth about it.

Potential customers don’t get offended because you have something for sale. They get offended if you’re pushy or unclear. If you’re unsure of yourself, your potential customer could lose trust in you. Minimizing yourself and your services doesn’t help. Your potential clients want to know that you believe in your product and that you think it’s great. They’ll respond when you’re honest, straightforward, and confident.

Feminine Business Principle #2: Sales is About Service

 Conscious selling is an energy exchange between two people who trust each other’s inherent goodness. When you approach sales as a service, you can bypass the slimy salesperson story. So, anytime you’re preparing to share what you do with someone at a party or BBQ, or when you’re stepping into a selling conversation or putting together your marketing materials, ask yourself, “How can I be of the highest service to the people on the receiving end of what I’m creating?”

Feminine Business Principle #3: To Ignore Urgency is to Serve Fewer People and to Sell Less

 As women, we don’t want to force or push people into anything, and we know that as consumers, we don’t like having time constraints when making a big financial decision. Yet, how many times have you made a buying decision because there was a deadline, discount, or special of some sort? We’ve all bought because of special incentives; human nature is simply programmed that way.

If the incentive hadn’t been there, you might not have bought at all. That’s because none of us like to change or evolve. We’re more comfortable with what’s familiar. And when we invest a large amount of money in something, it’s a big change that takes us out of our comfort zone.

If you want to grow a successful business, you need to embrace urgency. Remember: That isn’t the same thing as stress or pressure. It’s simply an incentive to try something new.

Feminine Business Principle #4: Selling Can Be a Sacred Form of Self-Expression

 Selling really can be an art form and an opportunity for you to put your creativity into your marketing materials in a nourishing and joyful way. It’s your chance to design, choosing colors, fonts, and graphics. Make it fun, and make your marketing a reflection of your soul.

Whether you work with a photographer to create great images of your products or infuse your materials with your favorite inspirational quotes, selling can be a sacred form of sharing more of who we are with the world.

Feminine Business Principle #5: “Conscious Saleswomen” are Deeply Present

 A conscious saleswoman is intuitive and committed to her clients/customers. She’s in it for the right reasons, and her customers perceive her level of integrity. It makes them want to buy from her and refer other people to her.

The conscious saleswoman takes the time to get to know her customers, ask them questions, and find out what they truly want—in their words—so that she can serve them better. Remember, it’s essential that you offer what your customers really need, not what you think they need.

According to Harvard Business Review, “women now drive the world economy.” Simply put, we are the economic engine of the planet.

Remember that when we buy something, we do it to improve our lives or create some kind of change, whether it’s the organic herbal shampoo that makes our hair feel and look amazing or a coaching program that helps us finally turn around those niggling bad money habits and grow our wealth. When we sell something of value, it’s an opportunity to improve the lives of our clients/customers.

You can think of it this way: To hold back on selling your own services or products is a selfish act. To sell is to change lives. And you are here not only to close the pay gap, but to change lives, including your own.

***

SPECIAL NOTE: As a participant in the Women In The Cloud Conference, you are invited to join Sage for her Women Rocking Business LIVE Event, March 19th – 21st, in an ocean view conference hall in Santa Cruz, CA. She’s opening up 50 full scholarship seats for you.

During this 3-Day Live Event you will:

  • Master the Art of Enrollment
  • Turn 50% of your conversations with potential clients into paying clients
  • Learn Sage’s system for Authentic Sales the Women’s Way, so you can always enroll the clients you want and fill group programs
  • Discover 3 “Done-for-you” Launch Plans to Build your Business
  • Discover the Formula for Financial Feminine Freedom
  • Work 12 Days a Month or Less making $6-7 Figures doing what you LOVE!

>> Go here for details and to claim your spot.

https://womenrockingbusiness.com/wls-deposit/

Credit : Sage Lavine, www.womenrockingbusiness.com

Clearing The Path For Female Entrepreneurs By Gavriella Schuster

I look forward to joining the Women in Cloud community on Saturday, Jan 26th, where female entrepreneurs from many facets of the tech industry are coming together to invest in themselves, to recharge their energy, and be inspired by a community of like-minded women leaders, sponsors, and allies.

The data is clear, female technology entrepreneurs are outnumbered and underfunded and we need that to change.

What can enterprise leaders do to help? Here are  five ideas:

  1. Investigate – Look for places within your supply chain where women-led suppliers are under-represented.  Examine your application process for requirements that may not be inclusive.
  2. Analyze and Take Action – Measure the mix of women in your tech communities and create practices and norms that encourage women to feel welcomed, valued and involved.
  3. Seek Broad Support – Look for support from across your company’s communities. The women in your organization should not be the only ones to bear the burden of driving the fixes we need. Get everyone involved, and set-up women in the company to be strategic advisors and mentors.
  4. Share the Voice of Women – Ensure the female perspective is shared in your feedback systems and deliberately reach-out to women-led communities to include their point of view.
  5. Go Beyond – Sharing advice and mentoring women in your organization is important. But for greater impact, create true pathways for women business decision makers to take active steps toward engagement with your organization and business opportunities.

I can’t wait to speak with all of you who are attending the Women in Cloud Summit. I’m excited to hear your stories, learn from your journey, and get ideas about how we can make things better together.  I’ll be joined by other industry leaders who share my passion and energy for helping female entrepreneurs step into the cloud opportunity.

If you haven’t yet registered for the event, here’s the link to reserve your spot.  Tell your friends, colleagues, leaders, investors, communities.  Let’s take the time to make this investment in ourselves together.

 

#WomenInCloud #SheSoars

Credit: Gavriella Schuster