• FREDDIE MAC’S SUPPLIER DIVERSITY ACADEMY SUCCESS

    When Freddie Mac started its Supplier Diversity Academy in 2

    FREDDIE MAC’S SUPPLIER DIVERSITY ACADEMY SUCCESS

    When Freddie Mac started its Supplier Diversity Academy in 2016, the goal was to help current and new suppliers better understand how to work with, and win work from, the company. Four years later, Freddie Mac has graduated more than 50 diverse suppliers from its academy. During this time, 40% of these graduates have earned contracts with Freddie Mac as a result.

    Freddie Mac started its journey to create the academy by conducting educational sessions for diverse suppliers focused on the organization’s procurement processes and the needs of the business. The sessions also provided access to decision-makers and allowed suppliers to present their capabilities. Freddie Mac gained a better understanding of what the suppliers could offer and the suppliers, in turn, learned what it takes to become a business of choice at Freddie Mac and other organizations.

  • How to Approach your Business Finances with confidence

    It shouldn’t come as a surprise to most entrepreneurs that

    How to Approach your Business Finances with confidence

    It shouldn’t come as a surprise to most entrepreneurs that starting a business is a challenging endeavor. In fact, a recent study from World Bank, Facebook and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (https://www.inc.com/leigh-buchanan/why-its-so-hard-tostart-a-business-in-the-us.html) found that the U.S. ranked 51 out of 190 countries when it comes to the ease of starting a business, a ranking that weighs factors such as procedures, time and one of the biggest hurdles: costs.

    Over the course of my career—from working as a branch manager at a bank to my current role as director of Access to Capital at the Women’s Business Development Center (WBDC)—I’ve witnessed firsthand how difficult it can be for individuals to navigate the process of requesting the right amount of capital for their small business.

  • BUSINESS ETHICS FORM THE BASIS OF A POSITIVE WORKING ENVIRONMENT

    Do you consider your employees family? Do your employees fee

    BUSINESS ETHICS FORM THE BASIS OF A POSITIVE WORKING ENVIRONMENT

    Do you consider your employees family? Do your employees feel the same? Some small businesses are happy to say that their office is like a family. But is that always a good thing? Normally, the phrase “I really love the family atmosphere at work” seems ideal, but things can go awry quite easily. Are you treating employees as that estranged member of the family who has shown up at the most inopportune time? Take a step back and put yourself in your employee’s shoes. Does working in a family atmosphere mean employees may not get paid on time? Does it mean employees have to lie to customers or cover up the truth?

    Business owners are responsible for keeping the business afloat. We cannot put that responsibility on employees (family or not). By putting employees in these awkward types of situations, business owners create a hostile atmosphere and have less productive employees. It’s important to create a business ethics code in order to foster a positive working environment for everyone.

  • More than a Magazine

    It was February and Reno, Nevada, already blanketed by a lat

    More than a Magazine

    It was February and Reno, Nevada, already blanketed by a late-season snowfall, was bracing for several feet more.

    There were 20 of us: small business owners, solo entrepreneurs, nonprofit executives and Fortune 500 diversity professionals, representing a range of industries from across the country: advertising, automotive and banking to construction, consulting and healthcare. And we were settling into a cavernous lodge for the fourth annual Diversity Professionals Connect (DPC) 2018 Summit an intimate, invitation-only retreat hosted by Melissa Simmons, Diversity Professional magazine publisher, president and CEO.

    Launched in 2015, DPC’s mission is to “connect people, explore opportunities and build relationships.” Unofficially, its job is to dispense with the niceties that clutter business networking. It’s about pulling back the curtain on all segments of diversity and where they’re headed. It’s about the future of diverse entrepreneurs and professionals. And, with stark candor, it’s about economic survival, the closed-door struggles with worklife balance, the drive for success and the fear of failure.