Zernco was recently ranked by the Wichita Business Journal as the #10 Women-Owned Business in the Wichita-area. Businesses were ranked by their number of full-time local employees.
by Josh Heck – Wichita Business Journal 9/25/2015
Female business owners in the Wichita area want to ensure other women have opportunities to succeed.
The Wichita Business Journal asked female business owners in conjunction with this week’s list of the largest women-owned businesses (The List) what they do to help empower women.
For some, it’s offering additional training or chances for women to further their education. The importance of having a mentor is emphasized as well.
Candye Daughhetee, vice president of operations at Account Recovery Specialists, Inc., says the company has an in-house training program called “ARSI University,” to provide employees classes and seminars on industry issues. Course materials can be checked out at any time, and training sessions are offered regularly throughout the year.
“This is important to our owners (because) it empowers women to gain knowledge and confidence to help them reach their limits,” Daughhetee says.
ARSI moved to No. 9 on this year’s WBJ list, up from 13 in 2014.
Patricia Koehler, president of JR Custom Metal Products, Inc. (third on the WBJ list), stresses the importance of higher education.
“Have a mentor who can help guide you,” Koehler says.
Ashley Thill, CEO of general contractor Zernco, Inc., which climbed to No. 10 on the list, says she works with women to empower them to contribute ideas and skills to the construction profession.
Zernco, Thill says, also participates in the National Association of Women in Construction, an advocacy organization that promotes and supports employment opportunities for women in the construction industry.
Manufacturing Development, Inc., a 63-employee aircraft parts manufacturer in Cheney, strives to create opportunities for women to advance into management positions. Owner Marcia Mies encourages women to always advance their skills and learn everything they can along the way to aid that effort.
“I want them to know they are important, that they have a voice and should always set high goals for themselves,” Mies says.
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