Small business expo seeks to elevate women entrepreneurs in East Elmhurst

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The Women on the Rise Forum & Expo will have its sixth annual conference Oct. 18 and 19 at the LaGuardia Plaza Hotel in East Elmhurst.

Marsha Guerrier, a business coach and the founder of the expo, will host the forum that was sponsored by National Grid, Pillar to Post Home Inspectors and is supported by Assemblywoman Michaelle Solages (D-Valley Stream).

Kathy McGuinness, the first woman to be elected as an auditor in Delaware and Erika Hill, the director of Programs and Community Engagement at the Nassau County Comptroller’s Office are some of the guests expected to attend.

“I was just looking for a space for my friends and I who had entrepreneurial dreams to come together, to educate one another in areas of entrepreneurship to grow businesses and to highlight and celebrate our small businesses,” said Guerrier. “We just came to empower each other.”

Six years ago, the first expo was at a small community center with seven to eight vendors and 25 attendees, according to Guerrier.

This year’s event will be at 104-04 Ditmars Boulevard and will start at 8:30 a.m. for those who have not registered yet, 15 vendors are expected to attend and over 125 attendees are expected for next week.

“This reaffirms what I knew six years ago. Women are looking for a space like this that is created and run by women, and in particular women of color,” said Guerrier. “When we have a for us by us women are more excited.”

The expo is about women getting the knowledge they need to help build their small businesses, according to the business coach.

“This year’s expo is focused on beyond the nine to five as our topic,” said Guerrier. “We are getting women empowered and equipped for the beyond the nine to five in entrepreneurship and they are going to learn the four Ms of business.”

The four Ms include mindset, money, marketing & sales and media, according to Guerrier.

“With mindset, we cultivate that CEO mindset and also that self-love mindset,” said Guerrier who insisted “you need to take care of yourself in order to be more successful.”

As an entrepreneur, businesswomen need to create multiple streams of revenue with and the “Mom Boss Money Moves” panel will highlight some avenues women can take to get there, according to the host.

“It will train them on some basic financial tools,” said Guerrier on the panel. “It will also train you on the basic forms and worksheets you need to become a certified women-owned business and two you need to keep proper financial records.”

Marketing and sales are just important to a business, according to Guerrier.

“How to create lead generation, how to create landing pages and how to automate emails,” said Guerrier helps a business to run itself “rather than running you because for the most part most of us are working full-time jobs and have to do side hustles.”

Tapping into the marketing aspect of business allows it to grow to scale and thrive, according to Guerrier.

“We are also teaching people how to connect with media, how to do press releases and how to start your own podcast. That is a workshop that is on Friday as well,” said Guerrier. “The ultimate goal is to educate and empower women to build multiple streams of revenue in their life.”

As “solo-preneurs” it gets lonely when friends and family don’t understand the passion one has for their business, according to Guerrier.

“Being surrounded by enthusiastic women and having a community around that space is truly important to a solo-preneur,” added Guerrier. “Ultimately, they’ll take these businesses and build a solid foundation, hire more people and also seek funding to really scale those businesses to those seven-to-eight figures we wish we could have.”