Skill-Swapping Site Vendeve Is Empowering Female Entrepreneurs in a Creative Way
Excellent news for entrepeneurial women: Thanks to the new skill swapping site Vendeve, you can be the boss and trade your own skills in exchange for goods and services that you need. Founder and CEO Katelyn Bourgoin said that she made the site "for fearless, entrepreneurial women who want to unapologetically get shit done" — so if that sounds like you, you'll probably love what Vendeve has to offer.
One of the greatest parts about this new website is that it is bridging what Bourgoin is calling the "experience gap" young women often face. If you've ever been caught in the trap of wanting to get a job to gain experience in your field but being denied said job because you don't have enough experience, you understand how valuable exposure is. Said Bourgoin:
Women are the fastest growing sector of entrepreneurs. However, with reduced access to capital and mentorship, more demands for our time at home, and statistically lower confidence than our male counterparts, women face unique challenges.
The beauty of Vendeve is that you can market your skill set to other women who are looking to hire someone in your field— and they can do the same! Since the website is based on swapping, you don't have to have a load of cash upfront in order to benefit from others skills and experience that you might want or need.
On Vendeve, you can market up to 10 of your skills and also list up to 10 skills that you're looking to receive, and include a range of things like marketing, writing, yoga instruction, reiki, and even personal shopping. Then, you can either find others who are looking for your services and propose a swap, or bid on an already open auction someone has listed for a specific skill set they can give to you. The proprietary dollar amount of said skill is estimated and the wants of that auctioneer are listed, so you know automatically if you'd be a good fit. Not only can you use the website to find others who can help you with graphic design or business services for example, but you can also get access to indulgences like haircuts, massages, and acupuncture sessions, paid for by your skills instead of your dollars.
As Bourgoin says, this is the only platform that allows you to use your time as currency, since many young women are struggling to raise enough capital to start their businesses. “When you’re a wannabe entrepreneur or just getting started, you have three needs: grow your portfolio, meet new clients, and get the services you need to establish your business. Swapping skills helps you do all three," she said in a recent press release.
The website was founded in 2014 and launched this past January. So far, it has reached women in 14 countries around the world and saved women over $75,000 through swapping. Imagine the impact this could have on millions of women around the world and the impressive resumes it will undoubtedly help young women to create.
The best part is that Vendeve is free to use and doesn't have any cover charges or maintenance fees associated with being a member of the website. The bad news is that as of now, joining is by invitation only, as it is still in it's beta launch.
Hopefully this will soon change and we can all get onto Vendeve! In the meantime, you can still check out the website and see what you'll have to look forward to once it's open to the public.
Images: European Parliament/Flickr; Vendeve (2); Giphy