Jane HenryFounder & CEO, SeeHerWork
See Jane Work
Jane Henry, a recent Rice graduate (MBA 2018), is what you’d call a serial entrepreneur. “I didn’t think that for a very long time, in fact - I used to avoid [entrepreneurship] like the plague, but then I got my Rice MBA,” says Jane. A former consultant, Jane has always had a knack for business growth and development, but when Hurricane Harvey hit home, she created something herself.
Having received her undergraduate degree in business administration and statistics, Jane is very familiar with the strategies and techniques used to make companies thrive. After honing her skills as a consultant for Accenture, Jane was offered a position at Enron six months before the crash. Despite the mass layoff, Jane’s gift for business regrowth couldn’t be ignored. She was asked to be a project manager for the divestiture that lead to the acquisition of the Enron trading group by UBS.
Her undeniable talent for creating thriving businesses led to the creation of her own company, Xcution, which specialized in organizational change management and executive coaching. Xcution worked to rebuild and restructure many oil and gas companies in the region, ‘walking in [each] company’s shoes’ to learn the safety measures, understand protocol, and even wear the personal protective equipment in order to create successful opportunities for growth. After several years of rapid expansion and great success, the dramatic drop of oil prices in 2016 eventually forced Jane to walk away.
Though her company couldn’t withstand the oil crash, Jane’s inspiration and dedication didn’t stop her from furthering her entrepreneurial passion. She enrolled in Rice University’s MBA program. Jane was enrolled in Professor Al Danto’s Enterprise Acquisition class when Hurricane Harvey damaged hers and thousands of other houses in its path.
Accustomed to wearing personal protective equipment from her time spent consulting with oil and gas companies, Jane knew how vitally important properly fitting clothing and gear can be. So when Jane’s unisex gloves weren’t doing the job while cleaning up the debris from Harvey, she took matters into her own hands. “I went to throw away my ‘girl’ gloves, and the dumpster lid slammed on my [unprotected] hand, and I knew I could make something better.” Jane sewed a pair meant to fit a woman’s hand properly and began bringing them to her local hardware store to ask female employees for feedback. As word of Jane’s gloves spread, her wish to bring this product to the market fulfilled a market need.
Jane always knew she had the drive and mindset to be a successful entrepreneur, but became unstoppable with the mentorship of Professor Al Danto and other Rice Business faculty. Jane’s company, SeeHerWork, dedicates themselves to selling women-specific workwear, safety equipment, and other job-specific products to keep women safe and performing at their highest level. SeeHerWork launched in January of 2018, and with the help of the new Rice Angel Network and Lilie, Jane hosted an event to find potential investors. The event was a success and with the new financial support, SeeHerWork has continued to grow.
“Six million women put their lives at risk each day and 150 die every year because of ill-fitting personal protective equipment,” says Jane. Her contribution to saving women’s lives and improving the working conditions for women in the STEM field is only beginning, as she reported, “Vogue, CNN, and Good Morning America called [to hear more]!”
Stay tuned as we follow the exciting changes coming to the STEM field. For more information on Jane’s work, click here.