Empowered & Unstoppable

Empowered young black women flexing her muscles

Be an empowered owner!

My generation of women entrepreneurs has been at the forefront, striving to inspire the next generation to shatter glass ceilings and break barriers in the world of business. Although we have made significant strides, there are still hurdles to overcome.

We still struggle recognizing our worth, securing funding, managing imposter syndrome, embracing failure, and finding balance. However, armed with resilience, determination, and friendly advice, we can conquer them all.

Being Taken Seriously

One of the most common challenges women entrepreneurs face is the struggle to be taken seriously in male-dominated industries. However, remember that you have the knowledge, skills, and passion that brought you to this point. Embrace your expertise and let your confidence shine through.

Surround yourself with a supportive community of mentors, advisors, and like-minded entrepreneurs who can encourage and uplift you. Focus on building your reputation by delivering exceptional results and showcasing your expertise through thought leadership platforms, such as blogs, podcasts, or public speaking engagements. You are your brand, make sure it is conveying what you want to be known for.

Access to Funding

Obtaining funding is a significant obstacle for many entrepreneurs, and studies have shown that women-owned businesses often receive less funding than their male counterparts. However, various funding options and resources are available.

Research and explore grants, loans, angel investors, and venture capital firms that prioritize supporting women-led businesses. Develop a clear and compelling business plan and practice pitching your ideas with confidence. Don’t be afraid to seek support from crowdfunding platforms or consider bootstrapping as an initial step to prove the viability of your business.

Imposter Syndrome

Imposter syndrome can impact even the most accomplished entrepreneurs, leading to self-doubt and a fear of being exposed. Remember, you have earned your place in the business world.

Acknowledge your accomplishments and remind yourself of your strengths regularly. Celebrate your successes, no matter how small they may seem. Seek validation from your peers and mentors and remember that setbacks are a natural part of the learning process and where we can discover our biggest strengths.

Fear of Failure

The fear of failure can hold back anyone, but it’s essential to recognize that failure is an inevitable part of any entrepreneurial journey. It’s through failure that we learn and grow.

Shift your perspective on failure and view it as an opportunity to learn valuable lessons. Embrace a growth mindset, and don’t be too hard on yourself. Surround yourself with individuals who support you during tough times and remind you of your capabilities.

Work Life Balance

As a dedicated business owner, the weight of responsibilities can be overwhelming, leaving you feeling torn between your personal and professional life. However, it’s crucial to remember that work-life balance is not a one-size-fits-all concept. You have the power to define what it means to you. In the pursuit of success, it’s easy to fall into the trap of trying to do it all alone. But here’s the truth: you don’t have to carry the burden alone.

But work-life balance goes beyond just delegating tasks. It’s about putting yourself first. Prioritize self-care and set clear boundaries to prevent burnout. Remember, taking care of yourself is not selfish; it’s necessary to sustain your productivity and well-being.


To be taken seriously in male-dominated industries, we must own our expertise and exude confidence. Surrounding ourselves with supportive mentors and building a reputation through thought leadership, showcasing our unique abilities, and strengthening our personal brand.

As women business owners, we stand together in unity and encouragement. The path to success may be challenging, but by supporting each other, celebrating our achievements, and redefining norms, we pave the way for a future where women entrepreneurs thrive, and equality becomes a living reality.

Linda Ruffenach

Founder / Chief Strategic Officer at Execuity. Linda is an experienced entrepreneur, skilled facilitator, and bourbon badass. Her 20+ years of C-level experience enables her to relate to the challenges business owners face every day. As the former CEO of a $100 million international enterprise, she has been through almost every stage a company can experience from fast growth, rapid decline, to complete transformation. In addition to running multiple businesses, Linda is Entrepreneur in Residence at the University of Louisville's School of Business, leading and mentoring undergrad and graduate students on their path to business ownership Linda’s superpower is turning strategy into results.