Women’s Business Enterprise (WBE) Certification

I am excited to announce that Lead at Any Level® has achieved national recognition as a WBENC-certified Women’s Business Enterprise (WBE)!

The full press release is available here:  Lead at Any Level LLC Receives WBENC Certification

What Is WBE Certification?

The Women’s Business Enterprise (WBE) certification is bestowed upon businesses that are owned, controlled, and operated by women in the United States. The certifying organization, Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) works with regional partners like Great Lakes Women’s Business Council to ensure businesses meet strict qualification requirements. To be eligible for certification, a business must demonstrate that a woman (or women) have a controlling interest in the business, and that a woman (or women) have final authority for business decisions.

Why I Sought WBE Certification

There are many benefits associated with obtaining WBE certification. I was most interested in the networking opportunities that would be open to me as a member of WBENC. National membership includes access to the Great Lakes Women’s Business Council, and other regional partners. My secondary goal was to take advantage of the many learning opportunities available to WBEs. These include conferences, webinars and live symposia. However, I am quickly learning that obtaining WBE certification will mean access to larger clients for consulting and training services. Federal contractors and other large entities have goals driving the engagement of WBE-certified suppliers like Lead at Any Level®. And for some women, WBE certification means access to lenders and funding they may not have otherwise.

About the WBE Certification Process

The application process is paperwork-intensive. Business owners seeking certification must submit detailed financial statements, stock certificates, contracts, and other documentation to support their claim of being woman-owned. The submission process took a few months, because it required me to put greater rigor around the management of my business, which started as a side hustle / experiment. Going through this process, I started on the path to becoming a true entrepreneur, with accountability to myself and my business. The WBENC application website laid out the requirements clearly and allowed me to upload documents over time. For someone who already knows what they’re doing (and who has kept accurate records), the application process could take as little as a few days. WBENC requires an application fee, which includes the first year’s membership dues, as part of the final submission step.

After an applicant submits all the documentation, the review and approval process begins. The WBENC regional partner (Great Lakes Women’s Business Council, in my case) assigns a local member volunteer to review the submission. Another member volunteer conducts a site visit at the business. During the visit, she completes a structured interview with the owner(s). Afterward, these volunteers make a recommendation to the regional council, which renders a final decision. WBENC advises that business owners can expect a decision within 90 days of their submission.

What Happens Next?

To be honest, I’m not sure what to do next in this process! I know I can (and will) update my business cards, website, and other marketing materials with the coveted “Certified WBENC Women’s Business Enterprise” and/or “Women Owned” logos. There are many opportunities to meet fellow WBEs, locally and nationally, that I hope to attend soon.

If you have obtained or considered WBE certification, what drove your decision to do so? If you haven’t applied, what’s holding you back? I would love to hear stories from other women about their experience with this process!

Build Diverse Leadership Pipelines with Original Programs, Forward-thinking Insights, and Enterprising Content from Lead at Any Level®

[ls_content_block id=”3955″]
Permission to Reprint

Permission to reprint articles by Amy C. Waninger is hereby given to all print, broadcast, and electronic media, provided that the contact information at the end of each article is included in your publication.

Organizations publishing articles electronically must include a live, clickable link within the body of the article to:


For print publications, please mail a copy of the publication to:

Lead at Any Level, LLC
11650 Olio Road
Suite 1000 #391
Fishers, IN 46037

Permission to reprint articles by Amy C. Waninger is granted at no charge with the agreement that:

  • The author’s full bio (see below) is included with each article.
  • One copy of the publication in which the article is published is provided to Lead at Any Level.
  • A fee of $300 per article will be expected for articles published without the closing bio and contact information. Contact info@leadatanylevel.com for an invoice and payment instructions.

Permission is also granted for reasonable:

  • Content editing and addition of industry-specific examples
  • Length
  • Change of article title

For reprint permissions of other Lead at Any Level authors, please email


Amy C. Waninger Author Bio

Amy C. Waninger is the Founder & CEO of Lead at Any Level, where she improves employee engagement and retention for companies that promote from within. Amy offers assessments, advisory services, and training on essential skills for inclusive leaders. She is the author of eight books. Learn more at www.LeadAtAnyLevel.com

Also available for download: profile photos, extended bios by industry



583 words by

5 responses to “Women’s Business Enterprise (WBE) Certification”
  1. […] Women’s Business Enterprise (WBE) since […]

  2. […] leaders, please consider Lead at Any Level®. Lead at Any Level® is certified as a Women’s Business Enterprise (WBE), Woman Owned Small Business (WOSB), and LGBT Business Enterprise. We also hold certifications with […]

  3. […] September 2018, Lead at Any Level, LLC was recognized as a Women’s Business Enterprise by the Great Lakes Women’s Business Council (GLWBC) and the Women’s Business Enterprise […]

  4. SEO Kansas City Guide Avatar

    Wow! What an interesting group to join in!

  5. […] national and regional recognition as a WBENC-Certified Women’s Business Enterprise (WBE). [blog post contains link to press release] This week, I’m pleased to be recognized by the National LGBT […]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.