BY FAST CASUAL – In honor of International Women’s Day (March 8) I wanted to highlight some of the women who are already leading the way. I’m humbled to cover their accomplishments, whether it’s as CEO, the founder of a new concept or taking a leap of faith by opening a franchise. I can’t wait to see what they do next.

Tara Gilad, Founder Vitality Bowls 

“It can be difficult being female in a male-dominated world, and I’ve often found myself discounted by men when dealing with them in various aspects of the business. I hope that in the coming years, an increase in the number of women leaders will have a positive effect on the industry.”

Got her start in the biz
After struggling to feed her daughter suffering from food allergies, in  2011, Gilad created Vitality Bowls, a casual superfood café where people could eat  nutritious superfoods from a kitchen that strived to avoid cross-contamination of common food allergy ingredients.

On why women make great leaders
“I think many women are concerned with work/life balance and trying to manage having a family with the demands of leadership roles and/or owning their own business. However, I find being in a leadership role gives me more flexibility than a regular job. It’s a lot of late nights and coordination, but for the most part I’m able to schedule my work around my kids’ needs. Plus, I’m a wonderful role model to my daughter. I definitely encourage more women to create businesses of their own and a huge benefit is gaining more control over their schedules. Vitality Bowls has several women franchisees that now own their own business and are experiencing success.”

Advice to women looking to lead
Do it! Don’t be afraid. The positivity and rewards that come from it far outweigh the hard work and long hours.

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