Natalie Rodriguez worked in the hospitality field for 25 years. She also owned restaurants and now works with consulting and credit repair. After hosting some EforAll events at her restaurants, she decided it was time to get more involved and use all of her knowledge to help entrepreneurs in Greater Worcester start their entrepreneurial journey.  


What made you want to become a mentor?

I love to teach people and give them the knowledge I couldn’t get when I started.

Can you give us some examples of the kinds of startups you have mentored with us?

The entrepreneur I’m mentoring now makes decorated cookies. She makes beautiful decorations, flowers, anything you want, and everything by hand. 

What is your favorite part of being an EforAll mentor?

Seeing their growth is probably my favorite part because you get to see the fruits of your labor; it’s like seeing your baby. And you get to celebrate their successes and achievements with them. Seeing them grow and win is my favorite part.

What do you think makes EforAll special?

What makes EforAll special is that they help people go from the very beginning stages and really dig deep into entrepreneurship, even down to branding, the color of their logos, etc. They teach you marketing and different things that you can do to help grow your business. And EforAll also has a unique sense of community, where entrepreneurs and mentors work together even after the program has finished. 

What are the biggest challenges that women entrepreneurs face?

I think it’s ensuring that your presence is known and you have a seat at the table like everybody else. That can pose a challenge because, especially as women of color, you may not have the perception of what you are capable and not capable of.  

What advice would you have for entrepreneurs?

Do not let anybody steer you in the wrong direction,  stay focused, put the blinders on and just keep moving forward and keep pushing. 

Interested in becoming a mentor? Learn more here.