Women, let's become BadAS.

Photo of Tanya
20 22

Written by

Date Started

November 2017

Project Stage: Select the description below that best applies to your approach.

  • Start-Up (first few activities have happened)

1. Personal Journey: What’s the story behind why you decided to start this project? NOTE: All applications must include a 1 minute video that answers: “I am stepping up to make change because..."

"I spoke like a girl, ran like a girl, read like a girl, swung like a girl, and led like a girl as if being “like a girl” was nothing to be proud of. It was for that reason that I woke up every morning feeling like I was unable to dream. It was not because I was incapable of dreaming but because I was afraid to. I was surrounded by society’s expectations of what women, more specifically Asian-American women, were capable of becoming— merely nothing more. While men were, “determined”, “confident”, “leaders”, and “dreamers.”Our actions, our knowledge, our voice, our dreams, our risks, our failures, and our imperfections matter. They matter because there are still little girls who are told they’re not good enough. We are at a time where many of us understand that woman rights are human rights, so let us make the changes needed for those words to be true. Women, let's become BadAS."

2. The Problem: What problem are you helping to solve?

The problem we are helping solve is very simple- we want to shatter the implict biases, and barriers - so that us women, are provided our basic, civil and fundamental human right of equality within society and the workforce. The world’s societal norms and systems that works against women in leadership and the workforce. Blatant and heinous sex discrimination leads to biases clouding the confidence in our strong and resilient women leaders.

3. Your Solution: How are you planning to solve this problem? Share your specific approach.

We have developed the brand and movement, BadAS - for women by women. BadAS is a platform and a step for all women considering, emerging, and/or in the workforce to congregate and break down generalizations, stereotypes, and expectations in society. What is BadAs? We want to begin a woman based nation-wide movement of sharing journeys to leadership in business. We are revolutionizing the workforce industry together through engagement, mentorship, and storytelling to fructify trail blazing and confident women cheering each other on at a global scale. All of us supporting each other to be bold, brave, and badass. The movement will be rooted from a story blog prolonging campaign, showcasing women and their genuine, personal, stories of fighting and success. The objective is develop a platform for women to share their journey, pivotal moments in their story, hardships they overcame, passions, goals, etc. on a public dynamic interactive website. We hope to utilize the connections and members from the site to gauge potential events, speakers, conferences, etc. We also hope the platform leads to a coalition building and business development page for all women looking for mentors.

4. Example: Please walk us through a specific example of what happens when a person or group gets involved with your project.

We want to begin with the recruitment of women from T-Mobile corporate itself- sharing their journey to leadership and employee story. Every women wanting to be recognized on our platform, is tasked with “nominating” three other women [ These women can be nominated from anywhere -from their respective team, a partnering team, different organization, companies, universities, etc.] that are willing to share their real and genuine story. They send us their “becoming” story, and we schedule their professional photo shortly after so it falls in conjunction with the theme of the site. BadAS strongly values in the conception that “external branding is started internally”. We rely on the nomination process so that it is allowing employees and students a platform to share their story, inspiring others, and uplifting local women. This reach can be seen by recruits, customers, teams, etc.

5. The X Factor: What is different about your project compared to other programs or solutions already out there?

There are many global agencies, government organizations, start ups, etc. wanting to “empower women”, but none seem to follow our very unique and engaging business model and values; We are human centered and want to produce genuine stories and relationships. We are reliant on our “Nomination” outreach and engagement strategy for growth and success. We want to recognize women at all/any levels in their career track.We want to develop an external brand from any corporate/industry , and learn from all. We are also a “business oriented service”. We want women to develop their social networks.

6. Impact: How has your project made a difference so far?

We have had the name of this brand and service in our minds and hearts for over a year, and had initially had gathered research to validate our vision and understand how women feel in the workforce and why at a high level. We conducted week-long surveys in 2017 and would receive ~45 responses at a time. Reasons varying and trending from clothing, conversation, harassment, implicit bias, unconfidence, etc. led us in wanting to take action so we could help bridge these women together and make sure our generation and generations of women to come would begin to speak out. We have presented to the University of Washington Board of Regents on International Women’s Day around women in business and technology, and briefly discussed the need of a “Story- Telling” resource during our whiteboarding stage with agreed consensus. A few of the women on the Board may potentially volunteer as well

7. What’s Next: What are your ideas for taking your project to the next level?

We want to go global and expand this movement beyond U.S. corporate companies, VC’s, and SMB’s all around the world. This is our time as women to speak up and share our story. We want our platform to be dynamic and informative. We are at a time where many of us understand that woman rights are human rights, so let us make the changes needed for those words to be true. I will do whatever it takes to speak like a girl, run like a girl, read like a girl, swing like a girl, and lead like a girl… harder, better, faster, and stronger. Translating this brand and movement to a businesses, service, and resource addressing and supporting Industries in the USA to partake in CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) efforts for women around the world.

8. Future Support: What are the resources needed to make your vision a reality?

We both navigated the corporate world at T-Mobile together and realized how privileged we were to start our careers with such an inclusive company. Our overarching goal is that T-Mobile corporate is the seed that begins this nationwide and potentially global-wide movement, and moving forward- we will definitely need mentorship from developers and business/marketing strategists at T-Mobile, a website, connections to begin spearheading this movement, and funds for the maturation and consistent growth of our project.

9. Finances: If applicable, have you mobilized any of the following resources so far?

  • Friend support
  • Family support
  • Mentors/advisors
  • Donations less than $100

10. Ripple Effect: Please share some ideas of how you could partner with other changemakers or involve other young people as leaders in making a difference.

Ironically, our entire business is reliant on the “Ripple Effect”. We expect our users to outreach and expand our platform base via social marketing, word of mouth, and nominations. So many stakeholders and entities are engaging in efforts to support and empower women in business, various industries, and leadership - but, no one has yet pooled the female general public together at a high level to drive change. We have seen how the women in our country have the ability to rewrite our future through powerful grass root engaged events such as the annual Women’s March, and wish to develop the podium for our country’s women that are interested/taking part in a united purpose of attaining equality in the workforce. Leah Shin and Tanya Kumar have both served/are serving the University of Washington student government and more specifically as Student Body Presidents which have provided them both with the prior experiences around effective human interaction and outreach. Leah, is currently working in T-Mobile Bellevue and Tanya has recently moved to the T-Mobile D.C office, so both have begun outreach from the 2 coasts/offices across the country for their initial launch.

How did you hear about this challenge?

  • Recommended by others
  • T-Mobile page or contact
  • Email
  • Word of mouth


Join the conversation:

Photo of Claudia Gourdet

Hello BadAS,

I love your project and feel you are addressing such an important issue in the lives of women. Keep up the great work!

View all comments