WomenX is a new Karachi-based initiative for female entrepreneurs with small to medium-sized enterprises. The program has partnered with World Bank Group and The Aman Center for Entrepreneurial Development, along with several others. Advisory Firm, Enclude was selected to manage WomenX projects in Peshawar and Karachi.
The WomenX program highlights two basic objectives: the entrepreneurship program, and Women’s INC. The entrepreneurship program is offered in 2 phases, each lasting 4-5 months. Entrepreneurs take a certificate course in business education, learn soft skills, attend networking events, and hold mastermind sessions in which small groups gather to gain clarity about their business model. Deeper into the program, participants are assigned one-on-one mentors with whom they develop individual Business Growth Action Plans. The program is comprehensive, covering everything from technical business management decisions to socialization with other entrepreneurs.
Women’s INC., the second objective, is a national awareness campaign that aims to improve perceptions of women in business and provide resources for those pursuing entrepreneurship.
Perhaps the most impressive aspect of WomenX is not the well-rounded coursework and educational training, but the sheer expertise and variety of mentors the program has on hand. The lineup of 20 mentors features prominent names from a vast array of backgrounds, like advertising, fashion, education, and human resources. CEOs and accomplished professionals offer customized mentorship throughout phase 2 of the program.
What’s Next for WomenX
It’s safe to say WomenX has made great strides, gaining respect and recognition both in Pakistan and around the world. It was recently announced that the program will spread to Lahore and Peshawar come 2016. In early September, WomenX was nominated for the Empowered Women award, along with several other global women’s projects, and their Facebook page continues to grow with over 7,000 likes.
You can check out some of the up-and-coming businesses associated with WomenX, like luxury label, Mariam Bukhari, training and consulting company, Outtabox, and Sam’s Cake Factory – all Pakistani companies that are gaining traction in their individual markets. WomenX participant, The Patio, recently made the list for Best Places to Eat in Karachi, offering Indian-Pakistani and Pan-Asian foods.
WomenX is geared toward already-established enterprises as opposed to new startups. However, you don’t have to be an expert to sign up.
“I entered the program as a complete novice to the ways of business. I had no background or idea where to start, but I was determined to make a good name for myself. I’m particularly fond of the Mastermind sessions which are one component of WomenX, because of the opportunities and possibilities that arose from interacting with groups of such intellectual and talented women,” Umber Tanveer told WomenX.
Applications to join the program are accepted online at womenxpakistan.com.
image credit: facebook.com/womenxpakistan