Saturday, March 10, 2012

[G] Providing a springboard for women entrepreneurs in India

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Official Google Blog: Providing a springboard for women entrepreneurs in India

Meghana Musunuri was a typical female entrepreneur in India. Born and brought up in Medak, she received a good education and spent time abroad both studying and working. Eventually, she decided to return to India and make a difference in her native country. After teaching in London for more than eight years, Meghana opened the Fountainhead School in Hyderabad in 2009. Meghana was smart, driven and passionate, but like many of her contemporaries in India, she needed guidance on how to use the web to broaden her business and her education mission. To help Meghana and the many other women entrepreneurs like her, we recently launched Women Entrepreneurs on the Web (WEOW).

Women Entrepreneurs on the Web teaches participants how to use web-based technologies to improve and grow their businesses. WEOW is divided into five different units or “circles,” all designed for women entrepreneurs with varied degrees of online presence and expertise. Entrepreneurs at various stages in their startups can enter the program through any of these circles.
  1. Building an online presence: creating a website, a YouTube channel, and a business page on a social network like Google+
  2. Collaborating effectively: tools like Gmail, Calendar and Docs
  3. Connecting with customers: hosting Google+ Hangouts, creating and distributing targeted offers and discounts
  4. Promoting your organization: online product demos, creating viral videos on YouTube, advertising through AdWords and AdSense
  5. Tracking and optimizing your online presence: Google Analytics, Google Alerts, ripples on Google+, the +1 button, webmaster tools
Meghana completed all five circles of the program and today, her school is completely online. She’s hosted several Google+ Hangouts for students and parents from the Fountainhead School’s Google+ page and is also using the page to post news, resources and recaps of in-person workshops. There’s more from Meghana on what she learned from the WEOW program in this video.

Rupa Aurangabadkar, another WEOW participant, recently launched a design company, Colorquill. She’s now working on a series of digital videos that will showcase each step of creating a mural and will distribute them via her YouTube channel. Archana Doshi of Archanas Kitchen has started offering cooking classes online via Google+ Hangouts. She also plans to have guest chefs sign up to offer culinary lessons via her website.

As part of our launch event at Google Hyderabad, Yolanda Mangolini, our head of diversity and inclusion, spent time with 30 women entrepreneurs. During this meet-and-greet, she highlighted company initiatives that focus on female empowerment, like the Google Anita Borg India Memorial Scholarships, Grace Hopper Celebrations and several outreach programs run by the Women@Google employee group. She also talked about our goal to build an organization that reflects its globally diverse users. Watch the highlights in the video below:



For updates on WEOW India, visit our website and YouTube channel. To date, we’ve had more than 300 women sign up for WEOW, and we plan to roll out WEOW to more offices and countries in the future.

Posted by Keerthana Mohan, Diversity and Inclusion Manager, Asia-Pacific
URL: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2012/03/providing-springboard-for-women.html

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