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Latinx MBA Founder Panel Insights

Our co-founder, Tanya Menendez, was recently invited to speak at Latinx MBA’s 2023 Alumni Leadership Summit. This summit was organized by Latinx MBA, a network of Latinx MBA alumni and current students dedicated to expanding access to opportunities and advocating for the U.S. Latinx business community. As a Latina founded start-up, we share in the vision of fostering an environment where economic mobility becomes an attainable reality for Latinos.

Moderated by Nancy Torres, Partner at Ulu Ventures, and joined by Felix Ruano, Co-Founder and President of Subject, as well as Isaac Saldana, CEO of Memo, the panelists shared their personal journeys and discussed the strategies they’ve employed to navigate the unique challenges faced by Latinx entrepreneurs. This includes their unwavering commitment to entrepreneurship, even when confronted with more financially rewarding and seemingly ‘stable’ opportunities. Additionally, they explored the complexities of leading and influencing others while balancing familial responsibilities, which, in the Latinx community, often extend beyond traditional societal expectations.

While entrepreneurship often presents its challenges, Tanya was keen to underscore that ‘nothing worth achieving comes easily.’ Despite the numerous hurdles Latinx entrepreneurs may face (with Latino founders accounting for just 1.5 percent of total US venture capital funding), there’s a profound sense of fulfillment and purpose that accompanies the journey of transforming an idea into a thriving business.

A few other valuable takeaways from the panel include:

  • The Power of Networking: The significance of cultivating and expanding your professional network. Your network can serve as a source of angel investors, bolstering your product’s credibility and gaining support from other investors. It can also facilitate connections with talented individuals for your initial team and offer a counterbalance to imposter syndrome.
  • Stay True to Your Authentic Self: Embrace your unique background, whether it involves being an immigrant or a first-generation entrepreneur, and carry forward the resilience and determination that define your journey.
  • Pursue Fulfillment and Adaptability: Prioritize endeavors that genuinely fulfill you, and learn when it’s necessary to let go. Cultivate a sense of comfort within your own identity.
  • Success and Paying It Forward: Strive for success in your entrepreneurial endeavors and remember to give back to the community.

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