5 Essential Tips for Women Entrepreneurs
All entrepreneurs face major obstacles that stand in the way of success. For women entrepreneurs, however, things can be especially challenging, due to stereotypes among investors, partners and even customers. Here is our advice on how to fight through adversity and achieve your business goals.
Follow your passion. Small businesses owners are much more likely to achieve success when they are passionate about their work. It will take countless hours and many sacrifices to make your startup successful. If you don't really enjoy your work, you aren't likely to put in the required time. Don't worry about traditional associations between business and gender. Whether it's cooking or accounting, choose something that will make it easy for you to get out of the bed every morning. It's not enough to be good at something. If you don't have a passion for your project, you will have a hard time keeping up with the people who do.
Find a mentor. It will be a lot easier to hit the ground running if you can talk to someone who has been in your shoes. By finding an experienced mentor, you can side-step common mistakes and target effective strategies. While many female entrepreneurs feel more comfortable talking to other women, you shouldn't limit your options. If you can learn from a man, take advantage of the opportunity. You should also continue collecting more and more mentors as your business grows. After all, a successful startup faces many different challenges as it evolves through the years.
Prepare for adversity. Resiliency is a key asset for any entrepreneur; however, it can be especially important for women, who tend to face unique and unexpected challenges while they are trying to start their companies. According to research, when trying to secure financial backing, female entrepreneurs tend to receive different questions than do their male counterparts. If this sort of experience makes you throw up your hands in surrender, you probably aren't cut out to start a business. Be prepared to face hurdles, and start cultivating a strong will, so you can press forward in the face of unfairness.
Do your research. While enthusiasm is an essential characteristic for female entrepreneurs, unbridled enthusiasm can be a vice. Before rushing into your venture, take the time to research your market, industry and potential competitors. False starts can be especially costly for startups, especially when they have limited capital. Make sure you have all of your ducks in a row before you even think of going forward; then, double check to make sure you haven't overlooked anything.
Don't try to do it all. Many times, female entrepreneurs take on too much responsibility in an attempt to prove doubters wrong. While a strong resolve is admirable, it's never a bad idea to delegate key duties whenever possible. By offloading tedious business responsibilities to a virtual assistant, you can leverage your time more effectively. Not only will you be able to focus your talents on growing your business, you will also enjoy more quality time with the ones you love.