Business and government leaders hold an important role in coming together to create solutions that enhance the lives and health of marginalized citizens, but it is particularly exciting when small businesses within these communities led by members of the marginalized group feel empowered to take action.
One company working toward closing the gap is Uncharted Power, a data and power infrastructure startup creating tech to support these very communities. Jessica O. Matthews, a black female founder and CEO, chose to build her company in Harlem to encourage diverse decision-making and uplift the surrounding community. In this talk, Jessica will discuss:
The business world has transformed tremendously in recent times. Execs are forced to rethink how they operate, what they offer employees, and their greater long-term impact on society. But what does the current business landscape look like for smaller companies? Uncharted Power is a venture-backed small business in the niche power infrastructure space – if you subscribe to the theory of intersectionality, the nature of their business stacks all odds against them. But CEO and founder Jessica O. Matthews is using this time to breed new vision for her company.
If you’re exploring innovation and adaptation for your business, Jessica will share how Uncharted Power has pivoted in the new business world by doubling down on their mission of redefining power access and building smarter, safer cities. She will discuss:
Join Jessica as she shares how an energy-generating soccer ball launched a global power and data infrastructure company, the trends she believes will drive the industry in the next decade, and the role Uncharted Power's disruptive innovations will play in this new ecosystem.
If entrepreneurial innovator and Uncharted CEO Jessica O. Matthews had followed through with the plans others had for her — and that she had for herself — she may never have set out on the path that has led to her becoming one of the leaders transforming cities across the world to be smarter and more equitable for all. Growing up, there were few examples for her to follow as a diverse woman making an impact in tech. Still her aptitude and ingenuity in tech and innovation were undeniable, and it led Jessica to discover the path that was always meant for her.
In this talk, Jessica reflects on her own story — beginning as a game-changing inventor in the renewable energy space to becoming one of the leaders powering the smart city revolution — to lead an eye-opening conversation on how each person can unlock their own destiny. As she outlines valuable strategies and action steps anyone can use to align their plans to purpose in pursuit of their destiny, she empowers a mindset shift that helps people get out of their own way on the journey to achieving everything they are capable of, and more.
Successful tech companies with a $7 million Series A Round typically start in Silicon Valley, not Harlem. But why is this the overriding norm? In this talk, Jessica reveals the obstacles she faced in wanting to move her company to Harlem, and discusses why it's important to question the status quo, go against the grain, and create something that works for you—no matter your location, background, or circumstances. Jessica will share how applying her leadership skills in unconventional ways has led to changing the renewable energy game. Her motto "succeed not despite of who you are, but because of who you are unapologetically" encourages individuals and organizations to embrace differences and recognize that personal struggle and challenges can give birth to solutions, if you let them. By leading with the simple understanding of focusing on what you can control, she inspires audiences to start with daily achievable goals and to lead by example.
Jessica O. Matthews is no stranger to inequality—both gender and race—when competing in the behemoth industry sectors of renewable energy and technology. But her struggle is not unique. With technology giants such as Facebook, Google and Twitter all with less than a 20% female employee composition, the lack of diversity that is so unreflective of the global population drastically affects the quality, relevance and diversity of innovative ideas that companies can produce. Uncharted Power tackles the intersection between innovation and empowerment through their impact program, UPlift 1 million, where they use their curriculum "Think Out of Bounds" to teach STEM, design thinking, and innovation to underrepresented communities. In this talk, Jessica shares her own struggles to succeed in a traditional industry and empowers audiences to discover ways to combat the intrinsic biases against people who do not adhere to the norm, regardless of industry, as a means to cultivate innovation and creativity from within. A firm believer that innovation is shaped by struggle, Jessica uses her story to show people that look like her what's possible—inspiring audiences to seek out ways to contribute to both positive and sustainable economic development and personal growth.