Welcome to ValiantCEO Magazine’s exclusive interview with Katie Kupstas, a passionate advocate for women inventors and the founder of Inventors Club for Women (ICW).
With a strong background in public relations, education, and intellectual property, Katie created ICW to empower and support women in their entrepreneurial journey. Today, we’ll dive into her story, the mission of ICW, and her insights on overcoming challenges in the startup world.
The Inventors Club for Women is dedicated to providing female entrepreneurs with essential resources and information on the startup process, intellectual property protection, and lean go-to-market strategies.
By addressing the systemic barriers and biases that women face in the industry, ICW aims to foster a more inclusive and innovative startup ecosystem, leading to greater economic growth and job creation.
In this interview, Katie shares her experience in the industry, her thoughts on the importance of effective communication, and her vision for the future of ICW.
Join us as we explore the world of female inventors and the exciting work of the Inventors Club for Women.
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Table of Contents
We are thrilled to have you join us today, welcome to ValiantCEO Magazine’s exclusive interview! Let’s start off with a little introduction. Tell our readers a bit about yourself and your company.
Katie Kupstas: My name is Katie Kupstas and I am the founder of Inventors Club for Women. I have a strong background in public relations, education and intellectual property. I created ICW for women to gain access to valuable information to increase the success of their business. We pride ourselves on integrity, transparency and honesty.
The Inventors Club for Women (ICW) is committed to empowering and supporting women inventors. In the United States, only 13% of women own utility patents for their products. This number can be increased by providing women with the necessary resources and information to navigate the startup process.
Our mission is to provide education and resources on the startup process from the idea stage to launch. We focus on why intellectual property (IP) protection is essential to their business.
As an organization, we acknowledge the systemic barriers and biases that prevent women from obtaining patents and other forms of recognition for their work. We provide tailored support and advocacy to female inventors to enable them to overcome these obstacles and thrive in the industry.
In addition to IP protection, we emphasize the use of the lean go-to-market strategy. This approach is valuable for startups with limited resources, which women inventors often face. Our strategy focuses on minimizing waste and maximizing efficiency to bring products to market more quickly and with less risk.
Our goal is to create a more inclusive and innovative startup ecosystem by providing education, resources, and community to women inventors. We believe that our efforts will result in more women obtaining patents and succeeding in the industry. This, in turn, will foster greater economic growth and job creation.
The ICW believes that supporting and empowering women inventors is crucial for a more innovative and diverse society. By offering resources, information, and support, we can help women overcome the systemic barriers and biases that prevent them from succeeding in the industry.
Our mission is to help women inventors bring their ideas to life, protect their innovations, and thrive in the startup ecosystem.
In the past year, what is the greatest business achievement you’d like to celebrate with your team? Please share the details of that success.
Katie Kupstas: I am thrilled to have the opportunity to be part of the newly launched podcast broadcasted out of GroundSwell Startups, a national leader in technollogy on the Space Coast of Florida.
The Inventors Club for Women is proud to be a regular contributor and sponsor of the podcast called ‘Before You Tank-Thriving In An Industry That Sucks.’ beforeyoutank.com This podcast tells it like it is with some of the best golden nuggets the industry has to offer.
As someone that has been in the industry for a decade, I understand the challenges that come with navigating it. There is a 98% failure rate in the startup industry and this podcast tells it all. The hope is to save others from the heartache we have heard from so many other innovators that did not have a guide to navigate the system.
That’s why I believe this podcast will be an excellent resource for anyone looking to succeed in the startup industry. Whether you’re a seasoned inventor or just starting, this podcast will provide you with valuable insights and tips on prototyping, intellectual property, licensing, PR and scaling your business and so much more.
I encourage you to check out ‘Before You Tank-Thriving In An Industry That Sucks’ and subscribe to the podcast on Apple, Spotify, Google and YouTube. I am confident that you will find it as informative and valuable as I have.
What advice do you wish you received when you started your business journey and what do you intend on improving in the next quarter?
Katie Kupstas: Looking back on my career, I wish someone had told me about imposter syndrome and how it can affect even the most successful individuals. It’s important to recognize that feeling like an imposter is a common experience, and it’s okay to ask for help and support when needed.
As an entrepreneur, the road can be lonely, and as a leader, it can be isolating in different ways. I’ve learned that leading with empathy and setting boundaries is critical, and having integrity is the most important trait in a leader. It’s essential to balance the needs of the team with the goals of the organization while staying true to your values.
In the next quarter, my focus is on helping more women achieve success in their businesses. Women innovators face unique challenges, and only 13% of women in the US hold utility patents.
I want to work towards increasing this number by providing education, resources, and support to female inventors. By doing so, we can create a more inclusive and innovative startup ecosystem that benefits everyone.
Online business keeps on surging higher than ever, B2B, B2C, online shopping, virtual meetings, remote work, Zoom medical consultations, what are your expectations for the year to come and how are you capitalizing on the tidal wave?
Katie Kupstas: As the founder of the Inventors Club for Women, I believe that the surge in online business presents a significant opportunity for women inventors to increase revenue with their products.
With the ongoing pandemic, the shift towards virtual and remote work, shopping, and meetings is likely to continue for the foreseeable future. As such, we are capitalizing on this tidal wave by creating a robust online platform for our members.
We believe that our online platform will enable us to reach more women inventors across the United States and beyond. By providing them with the necessary education, resources, and community, we can help them to bring their products to market more efficiently and effectively.
Additionally, our online platform will enable us to connect women inventors with potential customers, investors, and collaborators, thereby increasing their revenue potential.
We are also exploring opportunities to partner with other organizations and businesses to provide our members with additional resources and support.
For example, we are exploring partnerships with patent law firms, accelerators, and crowdfunding platforms to provide our members with more options to protect and finance their inventions.
Overall, our expectation for the year to come is that the trend towards online business will continue, and we are excited to capitalize on this opportunity to help more women inventors succeed.
Through our online platform and partnerships, we intend to provide our members with the necessary tools and support to increase their revenue potential and make a significant impact in the industry.
Business is all about overcoming obstacles and creating opportunities for growth. What do you see as THE real challenge right now?
Katie Kupstas: As the founder of the Inventors Club for Women, I see the biggest challenge facing women entrepreneurs right now as the persistent gender gap in funding and investment.
Despite the incredible strides women have made in the business world, access to capital remains a major barrier to entry for many women-led startups.
This is a significant issue because it limits the ability of women innovators to scale their businesses and take their products to market. With less funding and investment, women entrepreneurs may be forced to operate with limited resources and take longer to achieve success.
To address this challenge, the Inventors Club for Women is focused on providing education and resources on securing funding and investment, as well as creating a supportive community that helps women entrepreneurs navigate the challenges of securing capital.
We believe that by empowering women with the knowledge and tools they need to secure funding and investment, we can help close the gender gap in entrepreneurship and pave the way for more women-led startups to succeed.
In your experience, what tends to be the most underestimated part of running a company? Can you share an example?
Katie Kupstas: As the founder of the Inventors Club for Women, I have seen firsthand how many entrepreneurs tend to underestimate the importance of effective communication. Clear and concise communication is essential for any successful business, but it is often overlooked or undervalued.
One example of this was when I worked with a woman inventor who had a great product idea, but struggled to effectively communicate her vision to potential investors and customers. She was passionate about her product, but her pitches were too long and lacked focus. As a result, she had difficulty securing funding and generating interest in her product.
Through coaching and feedback, we helped her refine her pitch and messaging, emphasizing the unique value proposition of her product and highlighting the problem it solves. By improving her communication skills, she was able to secure the funding she needed and build a successful business.
Effective communication is key to building relationships with customers, investors, and partners. It allows entrepreneurs to articulate their vision and build a strong brand identity. By prioritizing communication, entrepreneurs can better navigate the challenges of running a company and increase their chances of success.
What does “success” in the year to come mean to you? It could be on a personal or business level, please share your vision.
Katie Kupstas: As the founder of the Inventors Club for Women, success in 2023 means achieving our goal of creating a more inclusive and innovative startup ecosystem for women inventors. We want to see more women obtaining patents, securing funding, and succeeding in their businesses.
On a personal level, success means continuing to inspire and empower women to pursue their dreams and make a positive impact on the world. It means seeing our members grow and thrive, and knowing that we have played a small part in their success.
We also hope to expand our reach and impact in 2023, by increasing our membership and offering more resources and support to women inventors. Ultimately, success for the Inventors Club for Women means making a meaningful difference in the lives of women entrepreneurs and contributing to a more equitable and prosperous society.
Jed Morley, VIP Contributor to ValiantCEO and the host of this interview would like to thank Katie Kupstas for taking the time to do this interview and share her knowledge and experience with our readers.
If you would like to get in touch with Katie Kupstas or her company, you can do it through her – Linkedin Page
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