You’ve probably heard of the organization aimed towards taking in young girls and turning them into admirable young women. Girls Scouts of America has always been an organization focused on the growth and development of girls and empowering them both as individuals and as a group. Teaching them to respect other women and look to each other for guidance and friendship, every girl who joins the Girl Scouts joins a troop of what may become life-long friends.
Now, a troop in New York is empowering their members to become educated businesswomen.
Troop 2221 spent five months doing legitimate market research, branding research, development and more on their pinny idea. On top of their daily school assignments, the girls also created a digital marketing strategy and a distribution plan for their product.
But the real success comes from the change we’ve seen in Girls Scouts as an organization. While many associate them with the legendary Girl Scout cookies, retreats, sleepovers and Barbie partnership, Girl Scouts now offer badges in real world skills that empower business goals--like badges in customer insights, financial literary and product design.
Women aren’t as prominent in business as they could be; in fact, 16.9% of corporate boards are made of women, and there are only 21 Fortune 500 CEOs who are women. Even though the shift has been made, and 6 out of 10 women are breadwinners in their households, they aren’t working in STEM jobs.
There are numerous reasons why women don’t choose to pursue higher levels of leadership in their careers. Some experts believe that women feel pressure to ask for less because of the social stigma of demanding more (women being seen as bossy or dramatic). Some believe that women don’t feel a leadership role is appropriate for them because they plan to start--or already have--a family who needs them.
Whatever the reason, Girl Scouts is looking to change that by encouraging girls to explore STEM interests and opportunities.
As much is being proven by Troop 2221, a group of 25 10-year-olds who brainstormed and logically considered product design and marketing for their pinny project. After the project was complete, the girls each filled out a job application. One girl assumed the role of HR manager, and would offer a position to the other girls based on skillsets and experience. The troop was thus divided into two CEOs, a digital media and public relations team and sales, marketing, design, and manufacturing teams.
Together, they held informative sessions to make critical decisions as a team; they made over $2,000 in revenue, which went towards education for the troop to advocate for endangered animals.
Teaching young girls how to work together without fearing leadership responsibilities is one thing: putting a young girl in the shoes of a CEO is an entirely different matter. Putting young girls in charge shows them how to be an effective and constructive leader rather than just teaching the theory of leadership; and it’s something we can expect from Girl Scouts in the years to come.
Image source: minnesotaconnected