Tag Archive: Paige Craig

  1. mom-pruh-nur-definition
    by Angie Chang

    Can Mothers Found Startups? (Hint: Yes)

    “People expect mothers to be less committed and therefore give them less responsibility and pay them less from the start.”

    By Joan C. Williams & Rachel Dempsey (Authors, The New Girls’ Network)

    An article in this weekend’s New York Times shed some more light on Silicon Valley’s worst-kept secret: it has a woman problem. Its look at female founders of tech start-ups who also have children shows a remarkable lack of self-consciousness about Maternal Wall bias, the strongest and most open form of gender bias today.

    According to the article, women make up 10% of founders at high-growth tech companies, and raise 70% less capital than men do. There are a lot of reasons for this; we discussed sexual harassment in our last post, and we’ll take on the meritocracy myth

  2. Pregnant-Woman
    by Angie Chang

    Single, Working, and Preparing for Pregnancy

    By Ellie Cachette (Founder & CEO, ConsumerBell)

    Running a startup is demanding — long hours, last-minute changes to tasks and projects, fast-paced days and zero time to myself. Stress levels can stay at a permanent HIGH setting for months -– even years. Sometime it feels as if I already have a newborn.

    “Oh, you have time!”

    I hear that often when asked about babies. But the truth is: time evaporates. Seasons change, projects launch and when honed in on a mission, time goes by even faster.

  3. paulgraham
    by Angie Chang

    The False Choice Between Babies And Startups

    By Zuhairah Scott Washington (Contributing Writer, Forbes Woman)

    Two years ago, I left a successful career as the youngest regional vice president at a private equity firm with $20B in AUM, to pursue my dream of becoming an entrepreneur. At the time, I didn’t have a “killer idea” so I joined a startup as a way to cut my teeth in the industry. In the ensuing months, I met with everyone and read everything that I could get my hands on about how to be successful as a startup tech entrepreneur.

    During this process I came across a blog post by Paul Graham, prominent investor and co-founder of Y Combinator, which gave advice to “would be” entrepreneurs like myself. The ingredients for success? 1) A great idea, 2) great people, and 3) a product that customers actually want. When I got to the bottom of the post I found the following footnote that read:

    [2] One advantage startups have over established companies is that there are no discrimination laws about starting businesses. For example, I would be reluctant to start a startup with a woman who had small children, or was likely to have them soon. [emphasis added] But you’re not allowed to ask prospective employees if they plan to have kids soon…Whereas when you’re starting a company, you can discriminate on any basis you want about who you start it with.

    While its common knowledge among career savvy women that we often have to prove that we are “in it to win it,” so to speak, I was surprised to see this advice given so matter-of-factly without noting any further mitigating factors a “reluctant” founder might consider when contemplating starting a company with a woman who was, or desired to become, a mother. Especially since Graham himself did successfully start a startup (Y Combinator) with a woman who was of child bearing age and who subsequently became a mother, albeit a few years later.

  4. Jessica_Jackley
    by Angie Chang

    Response to VC CONFESSION: “I Have Doubts Once I Think Of Women Founders Having Kids…”

    By Angie Chang (Co-Founder, Women 2.0)


    Jessica Jackley is best known as the co-founder of Kiva.org — Currently, she is starting up ProFounder.com to help you raise money for your business from your community.

    Jessica has raised funding from over 30 investors for her latest startup.

    One of her angel investors questions if female founders should be treated differently. He wrote a blog post titled “Putting Women First”.

    Reposted with a new title on BusinessInsider as “VC CONFESSION: “I Have Doubts Once I Think Of Women Founders Having Kids And Being Distracted From Work” — this post has received tons of comments.

    Below are responses to “A pregnant founder is going to fail her company”

    “I’m busy running said company. I expect to be even busier with not just one but two babies (yes, to be clear, I’m expecting twins) arriving this fall. And as all entrepreneurs know, you live and die by your ability to prioritize. You must focus on the most important, mission-critical tasks each day and night, and then share, delegate, delay or skip the rest. So, while Paige’s post was intriguing and important, it wasn’t urgent – until it came to my attention that my team was somewhat bothered by it. When they saw one of our investors questioning my abilities as a leader, they were confused and frustrated. And so I am now replying on their behalf as well as mine.”
    Comment by Jessica Jackley (Co-Founder & CEO, ProFounder)
    — in response to Paige Craig’s blog post “Putting Women First”

    “When my sister and I co-founded Magellan [first search engine in 1993] and worked all the hours that g-d gave, when we finally sold the company and Excite gave me a goodbye party, my then 11 year old son came, and when the time came for speeches, he gave one – which started out something like, as he looked around the room with his big blue eyes… “I don’t know if you all realize, if you all realize how hard my mom worked””
    Comment by Isabel Maxwell (Founder & President, Maxwell Communications)
    — in response to Paige Craig’s blog post “Putting Women First”

    “As someone who joined a startup at 5.5 months pregnant, worked up until 3 days before giving birth, and came back full-time 6 weeks later, I would question the assumption that your cofounder will somehow become incompetent due to childbearing. “Working smart” is the new “working long”, and nothing makes you ruthlessly prioritize like having a baby.”

    Comment by Cindy Alvarez (Head of Product, KISSmetrics)
    — in response to Quora: “Is it wrong to fire an (unvested) co-founder who becomes pregnant at a startup?”

    “Parenting creates a laser focus that you didn’t have before. Through parenting I have learned to operate at a totally different capacity. I don’t hesitate to say what I think, because there is not time to do business any other way. Who has time to screw around? Frankly you hear so little from us because we don’t have time to linger on chat boards.”

    Comment by Tereza Nemessanyi (Co-Founder & CEO, Honestly Now)
    — in response to Paige Craig’s blog post “Putting Women First”

    The above photo of Jessica Jackley was taken by Michael Dayah via Creative Commons Attribution 3.0.