A Message from Jill Earthy: Transitions

Jill Earthy September 17, 2020

I began working as the Interim CEO beginning in late March, and I’m thrilled to now be continuing in the ongoing role.

Yet, the timing of my transition has been… interesting.

Prior to this global pandemic, women entrepreneurs represented 28% of entrepreneurs in Canada, and we were seeing encouraging trends in exporting, business growth, lending and representation.

Now, with women taking on more of the household responsibilities, as well as being more active in highly impacted industries such as the service and hospitality sectors, there is fear that our progress may be lost.

I understand the life of a woman entrepreneur, because I’m one of them. I know first-hand the highs and lows of launching a business, the second-guessing, the long days and the breakthroughs.

More than ever, business owners have had to adapt over the past several months, and those lucky enough to be entering this season with their businesses intact are left with increased uncertainty.

At WEC, we’re taking this time to pause, reflect, focus on our strengths, and to create new models and new possibilities. I’m encouraged by:

  • the close relationships we have with our clients, and their gratitude for our support;
  • the increased collaboration with our partners, through equalization of access to resources;
  • a significant surge of women joining us for webinars, expanding their skills and staying connected;
  • our Regional Ambassadors around the province, who have been able to extend our reach, and to engage with more Indigenous, immigrant and young entrepreneurs;
  • our network of mentors, who provide emotional support to new entrepreneurs;
  • our funders, who recognize the important role women entrepreneurs play in economic recovery; and
  • our dedicated team of wise and passionate individuals.

In the coming months, I’ll be sharing some of the groundbreaking work that is being done in the BC ecosystem and the impact that I know we’re going to see. I hope you’ll join me in celebrating the innovation that comes out of these transitions.

Cheers to you all, and wishing you clear skies ahead.

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