Multiple academic studies, along with heaps of personal experiences, have shown that in business settings men not only talk more than women, but also tend to more frequently interrupt their female peers. The reasons that the studies have settled on vary from men using conversation as a tool of dominance to men simply being raised to perceive interruptions differently, but the evidence of men feeling more entitled to voice their opinions is quite clear.

This, of course, is very annoying on a day-to-day basis, but there are larger problems stemming out from it that have a truly negative effect on working women; including the fact that the more someone talks, the more likely their voice will be amplified.

That’s where Women in Business hopes to be a positive force. We hope to amplify the voices that might otherwise be interrupted. That’s why we are proud to continue our tradition of celebrating women-led businesses and organizations with our second annual Fifty Women- Owned Businesses to Follow list.

Inside this issue you will be introduced to 50 women-owned and women-led companies that serve as shining examples of what women can accomplish in business no matter what the industry. Companies and organizations included range from construction firms to advertising to information technology. By including such a large variety, we aim to blur the conceptual line between men and women’s work until people forget it ever existed.

As always, the opportunity for Women in Business to feature such an array of organizations came from our readers, who sent in nominations from communities across our 23-county readership. A few names on the list may be familiar from previous lists such as Top 100, Women Making a Difference or last year’s Fifty to Follow. Many are new additions that we were happy to discover have found such success in Central Pennsylvania.

We hope that the final list represents both large well-established companies and small startups full of potential, while also covering every region of our readership. Readers will see that growing your business is possible in all corners of the commonwealth, whether you are in Altoona, Clairton or Troy.

It is not only our mission to provide a podium for current success stories, but also to support women who have yet to break into the business world. With this in mind, we asked each company selected for some advice that they could pass on to someone else looking to succeed in their industry and hope that their answers demystify the intimidating task of starting and maintaining a business.

With this special edition finalized, Women in Business is moving on to collecting submissions for Women Making a Difference, which will shine a spotlight on the individual women who have taken a leading role in business and in their community. The edition will be published this fall and nomination forms can be found on our website under the “Women Making a Difference” tab. .

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2017-06-16 / Top 50 Women Owned Businesses

Serviam Construction, LLC

Est. 2012 | Altoona

Founded by Jayme Rhodes in 2012, Serviam Construction LLC is a service disabled veteran-owned small business/woman-owned business general construction firm with the capabilities to self-perform drywall, carpentry, ceiling and concrete work. With Rhode’s background in construction and military, she felt she would be able to make a difference in the government contracting construction community.

Currently, Serviam Construction performs work at VA Hospitals, government facilities, national parks and universities in Pennsylvania, New York and West Virginia. Recently they opened a second office in Le Roy, New York.

Serviam takes great pride in hiring women and veterans and continues to support organizations that help these two demographics in the workplace. Serviam Construction LLC is a lead sponsor and coordinator in the Sweat for Vets Powerclimb Race, the leading veteran charity event in Central Pennsylvania which has raised over $50,000 for local veterans in the past three years. They wish to continue to grow in all areas of the construction industry as well as continue to be active in the communities they serve.

Rhode’s advice to someone working in the construction industry is, “You need to be confident and thick skinned. Construction can be a tough but extremely rewarding industry.”

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