“Athena League serves as a catalyst to foster and empower aspiring and established female entrepreneurs by providing them with the community and support necessary to succeed.” – Athena League mission
Summer and the Athena League VOX Speaker Series are sizzling in Kansas City. Walking into the Plaza’s ‘kool’ new Polsinelli offices on Thursday, June 19, was the perfect way to escape the early summer evening humidity. The event was our tall glass of water (wine or brew) with a twist of lemon. Ahhh, the conversation was transparent and it quenched the networking thirst. So good, you know you’ll want to drink again.
On Tap|Responsive Web design founder, Kate Nielsen, @KateNielsenKate and Veracity Consulting, Inc. CEO and founder, Angela Hurt, were back and forth like brand new besties. Both ladies countered their differing views on work place “transparency,” both shared a tolerant twist on risk and both gave solid shots of advice to the crowd by way of their personal stories and experiences. As is often the case for Athena League Events, the evening was full of sobering facts from savvy business women. The subtle difference, these ladies are growing their technology firms virtually, – no brick, – no mortar – here in KC, and that’s the way they like it.
“Start something, fail and go do something again. The third time’s a charm.” – Kate Nielsen
The event was hosted by Athena co-founders, Mary Noulles, Triple-I marketing manager @mnoulles and Kristin Kenney, Tech and Startup attorney at Polsinelli @kristinkenney. The audience was a mix of entrepreneurs searching for partners, student loan riddled professionals staying put in corporate jobs, college grads questioning entrepreneurial pitfalls and emboldened high school grads readying themselves to step out and shadow.
The common themes of the evening’s conversations were don’t be afraid to take risks; be authentic and don’t be afraid to fail. Kate encouraged the VOX audience, “Start something, fail and go do something again. The third time’s a charm.”
Angela beamed with the same confidence that carried her from her humble beginnings as a baseball pitcher. She said, “There’s a plethora of opportunities here in KC” for entrepreneurs at all stages. She resists getting hung up on the “being a woman issue” and said, “I didn’t know I wasn’t supposed to be successful.”
Following these themes have led these founders to success in their unique companies. “Whenever I get on the phone and can’t read someone’s site, I get super frustrated,” said Kate. On Tap|Responsive Web Design gives people what they want to see and how they want to see it in mobile, tablet and laptop website design.
Go to the On Tap site and you’ll see what “responsive design” means:
“Responsive design is geek speak for a website that … will look good and remain optimally functional and navigable whether it is being viewed on a desktop, smartphone or tablet. It’s responsive because it responds to the device from which it is being accessed.” (http://www.beontap.co/what-is-responsive-design/)
“We are their (our customer’s) best technology.” – Angela Hurt
Veracity’s 45 employees look at various sized companies and reverse engineer IT business solutions, for them.
“Veracity focuses mainly on IT consulting in three areas: enterprise data decision support, IT infrastructure transformation and software delivery. These IT tasks are highly complicated and require a lot of coordination.”(http://www.bizjournals.com/bizjournals/how-to/growth-strategies/2012/09/veracity-solutions-keeps-it-virtual.html?page=all)
“We are their (our customer’s) best technology,” said Angela.
Both companies focus on building great relationships, knowing when to say “No,” and providing excellent service. Both Angela and Kate are risk tolerant while keeping their reputations strongly intact!