Post by Dr. Marsha Firestone, contributing Women On Business writer
As the Founder and President of the Women Presidents’ Educational Organization, I know the importance of a women’s business community such as this. The WPEO is one of the 13 regional affiliates of the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC). I will be blogging weekly with Amy Blais, Program Director in NY and Liz Cullen, Executive Director in DC to discuss pertinent topics for women business owners.
What is the WPEO and what is our mission? The WPEO is dedicated to increasing access to business opportunities for Women Business Enterprises (WBEs) while advocating in public and private sectors, providing skill development, and certification services. We are a regional affiliate of the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC), the nation’s leading advocate of women-owned businesses and third party certification organization.
Certification can be valuable to your business, some of the benefits include:
- Business profile listing in WBENC national supplier database.
- Access to a directory of corporations accepting WBENC certification.
- Use of WBENC seal on marketing materials.
The certification-process involves three key concepts: awareness, approval and access.
Awareness: Most Fortune 1000 companies are aware that it is a good business practice to contract with women owned businesses. As a result, many corporations have instituted their own supplier diversity goals based on the percentage of B-to-B contracts that are awarded to women and minority companies.
Approval: WBENC-certification affirms that the woman not only owns her business but operates, manages and controls it as well.
Access: WBENC certification comes with an extensive database of other certified WBEs and corporate supplier diversity members. The database provides contact information, business profiles and diversity program information as well as a mechanism for building connections and responding to requests for proposals (RFPs).
I urge any woman owned business to consider the 3 A’s as well as certification as a best practice for their business. I am looking forward to sharing my ideas with Women on Business each week. If you would like more information about the WPEO, please visit our website.