She can. She did. was born in 2017 from the frustration that our founder, Fiona Grayson, then 25, felt at the lack of truly honest accounts of what it takes to both launch AND sustain a business as a female founder in the UK today.
In order to do something about this frustration, she started interviewing female founders to shine a spotlight on their stories (warts and all), showcase the amazing businesses they were building and hopefully inspire others to follow in their footsteps (because if you can’t see it, you can’t be it).
Having spent the past three years interviewing, meeting and connecting with female founders from all over the UK – be it over coffees, podcast interviews, at The Midweek Mingles, phone calls or via DMs, Fi quickly began to notice the extent of the inequalities that exist, and gained a deeper understanding of the responsibility to be inclusive if we want to address this problem for everyone, not just the privileged few.
As we move into the newest phase of She can. She did. which includes the first and only benefits programme designed by and for self-employed womxn, striving for equality continues to be our mission. We recognise that the extent of the problem we’re facing is intersectional, containing many nuanced layers of oppression, bias and inequality. That’s why we want to make a conscious, ongoing effort to be as inclusive as we possibly can, so that any progress we achieve can be felt together, and no one who is left out by the current system gets left behind.
We are committed to being proactively inclusive and actively anti-racist to ensure that all womxn, including trans and gender non-binary folx feel welcome, and that this is a safe space. We will continue to evolve our language as the world moves forward, and we welcome any constructive feedback on how we can continue to do better.
There will never be a finished product, a final iteration of She can. She did. where we announce that we’ve ‘got it right’, it is a constant, iterative and ever-evolving process, and we appreciate you working with us as we grow.
Glossary of terms:
If you’re not familiar with some of the language we’re using and are interested in learning alongside us about how to be proactively inclusive, we’ve included some definitions below. We’ll keep adding to this as we go so feel free to come back to this page at any point!
Womxn – a woman (used, especially in intersectional feminism, as an alternative spelling to avoid the suggestion of sexism perceived in the sequences m-a-n and m-e-n, and to be inclusive of trans and nonbinary women)
Folx – A variation on the word folks, folx is a gender-neutral way to refer to members of or signal identity in the LGBTQ community.
Intersectional – Intersectionality is a theoretical framework for understanding how aspects of a person’s social and political identities. (e.g., gender, sex, race, class, sexuality, religion, ability, physical appearance, height, etc.) might combine to create unique modes of discrimination and privilege.
Female Founder – A female entrepreneur who has started her own business. We know that some identify with this term, others with self-employed because founder/entrepreneur is often used for businesses that are looking to grow and scale quickly. For us, if you’ve dared to go solo and start up on your own, you’re welcome in She can. She did.