Marie and daughter

WE Help Women Entrepreneurs Keep Going When The Going Gets Tough

 

More women than ever are becoming entrepreneurs, entering the market part or full-time, often with kids in tow, little education, and no idea where to begin. Women Entrepreneurs (WE) is here to offer an emotional support system, as well as a local network of friends and colleagues you can get with to talk about business, or not.

WE started out as a simple Facebook group to support local women entrepreneurs. It has grown into a membership community that has served over 200 women locally. The public Facebook group boasts over 2,000 local women entrepreneurs. 

Why the need for WE

I have done it the hard and lonely way, got fed up with it, and decided to make a change. 

I remember hovering above the “Create Group” button, because I had called it “Women Entrepreneurs” and I… honestly didn’t feel like one… even eight months after making the biggest decision of my life.

That big decision, deciding to buy my daughter’s daycare center, is what started it all. The decision, as I was holding her, to live my dreams so I could feel confident in telling my child to live her dreams.

Having a daughter changed everything for me. Everything. 

Before her, I wanted to be one of the guys. I wanted to blend in, and forget the fact that there were things only MY body could do, and things that were only going to affect ME, as a woman.

Before having my daughter, I would have bristled at the thought of being considered a feminist. Now – I want more than anything for the world to be better for my daughter.

From owning a daycare center, to starting WE in BCS, my heart, for the past five years has been with women, and more importantly, with women entrepreneurs who have felt pushed out of the workforce… for simply being women.

Whether you have felt excluded from the workforce after having children, or have simply always wanted to work for yourself, this is the place for you. This is where you belong. 

I don’t want you to go through every mishap and hurdle I went. From paying thousands for accounting mistakes to just getting basic things done in the 5th year of business, I want you to learn from me, from WE, and be better than those before you.

Your journey into entrepreneurship doesn’t have to be as hard as mine was. It doesn’t have to be as lonely. I want you to succeed and “enjoy” the entrepreneurship journey from the start – that’s why WE exists. 

While WE aims to provide baseline mentorship to get your business started or growing, what you’ll get from joining WE is deep friendships with people that are “crazy” like you, “ambitious” like you, “idea people” just like you. So you don’t have to do it alone. You don’t have to live in your head. 

You can start building DEEP friendship within WE from day one. You can meet your future best friend at a local event. You can feel like you belong when your entire network is busy working 8-5 to meet their current employer’s needs. 

If you don’t have a network of girlfriends in entrepreneurship, WE is for you.

I’m not saying your struggles will end. I’m saying you don’t have to struggle alone anymore. And I’m pretty sure what WE has to offer will help build your business beyond what you thought was imaginable.

 

Your biggest cheerleader,

Marie-Anne Mousseau-Holland

WE's History

Marie-Anne Holland has wanted to be an entrepreneur for as long as she remembers, taking college classes on the topic and helping create Texas A&M’s Entrepreneurship Society, now called CEO. Marie graduated with a  Management of Information Systems degree from Texas A&M’s Business School, a combination of business and IT skills that helped her snag a job locally as a Software Developer straight out of college.

After a few years working for a large corporation, Marie decided that finding a local small business would be a good idea to get a better picture of how they’re truly run. It was at this time that she got pregnant and found a small daycare to put her daughter in. She found out the daycare was for sale soon after, and bought it a few months later. 

This was a major turning point in the story of Marie & WE. Marie remembers looking at her daughter and thinking “If I don’t follow MY dreams, how can I ever tell my baby girl that she can follow hers…”

And it was with that thought that Marie said “Yes”! 

Yes to owning a business. Yes to following her dreams. Yes… to feeling the loneliest she had felt in her entire life.

All of her friends worked corporate, 8-5 jobs, and therefore, getting mentorship and support was hard in those beginning years. 

She wanted to find a support group to be a part of, then realized it didn’t exist and she would need to create it. 

After almost a year of trying to do it alone, Marie-Anne Holland started the WE Facebook group in 2018 as a way to connect to other entrepreneurs and feel less isolated in her new role as business owner. She aimed to form a supportive local community that could help each other in times of trouble, celebrate victories together (big and small!), and come up with creative solutions to repetitive problems that would benefit the community.

In August 2019, with Amelia McCracken as a Co-Founder, WE was started as an official membership. The organization soon had to deal with challenges, from Marie’s mental health to COVID shutting down not only our business, but that of many members. 

In early 2022, Marie bought Amelia’s share of the company in the hopes of making her personal dreams for WE a reality. This would be a part of the story a lot of people skip over, simply because it’s not perfect, but Marie really wants people to know that WE would not have happened without Amelia. 

Amelia McCracken, a born entrepreneur, was a staple of the community before WE was created, and she continues to do so in her new role as COO of I Heart Bryan. You can also find her busy working at her base company, Ment Services in Bryan, Texas.

Marie is currently working on building local support and mentorship to WE members in the BCS area that can be recreated in other communities. Marie hopes that the vision of WE can spread encouragement for women entrepreneurs in every community that needs it.

Are you our newest member?

We hope so! We can’t wait to go on this journey with you.